“Over time, individuals and organizations have come to rely on their values, and I think that’s true of Virginia Tech. But I also take precautions because the hardest work to combat the spread of institutionalized racism still has to be done. Following the keynote, Erica Cooper, assistant faculty diversity officer, moderated a panel with Ronald Fricker, associate director of faculty affairs; Ellington Graves, executive vice president of inclusion and diversity; and Kristin Gehsmann, professor and director of the School of Education.
InclusiveVT Summit, formerly known as Diversity Summit, held August 10 at The Inn at Virginia Tech and Skelton Convention Center, explores the past, present and future of work diversity, inclusion, and equity at Virginia Tech and in higher education. Keynote speaker Paulette Granberry Russell, President of the National Association of Diversity Leaders in Higher Education, led the conversation about diversity, equity, and inclusion in higher education. “When we talk about the state of the race in higher education, I approach it with cautious optimism,” Russell said.
The panelists, along with the audience, reflected on the state of diversity, equity, and inclusion at Virginia Tech. They cover various aspects such as the importance of context, enrollment, research methods, student success, data-driven decision-making, and resource allocation. For the final session of the morning, Menah Pratt, Vice President for Strategic and Diversity Affairs, presented the Office’s 2022-23 Diversity and Inclusion Strategic Priorities focusing on impact and sustainability. “Ut Prosim [That I May Serve] has a responsibility to serve unconditionally to anyone, anytime and anywhere.
And we need a certain skill, courage and experience to do it well. That is the goal of our [Office of Inclusion and Diversity] at Virginia Tech. Afternoon sessions include visits to the Solitude-Fraction site and cooking demonstrations at the Indigenous Friendship Garden, as well as a series of live, virtual, and asynchronous sessions on diversity, publicity and innovation initiatives. equality and inclusion.