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Board of Trustees Names Members of New Advisory Committee on University Climate, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Accessibility
Syracuse University’s Board of Trustees today announced the formation of the Advisory Committee on University Climate, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Accessibility. The advisory committee will be co-led by Trustees Richard M. Alexander L’82 and Jeffrey M. Scruggs, both of whom previously served as co-leads on the Board’s Special Committee on University Climate, Diversity and Inclusion, which concluded its work in March 2021 with the issuance of a final report.
Recommendations from the special committee include investing $50 million to identify, hire and retain a more diverse full-time faculty; enriching and modernizing the curriculum; enhancing the residential student experience; strengthening and prioritizing diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility across all training, programming and facilities planning; and reimagining the role of the Department of Public Safety.
“The formation of the advisory committee reflects the Board’s continuing commitment to this transformative work that is critical to shaping the future of Syracuse University,” says Alexander. “We look forward to the opportunity to provide strategic oversight with respect to the initiatives that will enable the University to become a leader in higher education. Our work will support modeling the values of a diverse and inclusive society on our campus, while fostering a culture that is supportive and welcoming to all people and preparing our students to be leaders.”
The new advisory committee will be tasked with, among other things, reviewing the actions taken in fulfillment of the University’s Campus Commitments. The advisory committee will also receive regular reports from the chief diversity and inclusion officer on progress in implementing the University’s five-year strategic plan and will provide oversight with the University’s efforts to foster a more diverse and inclusive culture and a welcoming and equitable campus environment.
“The University and the Board of Trustees are committed to take actions that build a community that is welcoming to all,” says Scruggs. “Several foundational elements are complete or nearly finished, including the work of former U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch, the recommendations of the Special Committee, results of the climate pulse survey by Dr. Damon Williams, and the strategic plan being developed by the Office of Diversity and Inclusion. Most importantly, we heard from our students about how they experience Syracuse University, and where we must do better. The advisory committee is poised to support the long-term work that will bring lasting and meaningful change to our community.”
Other members of the new advisory committee include:
- Joanne F. Alper, Life Trustee
- David G. Edelstein, Voting Trustee
- Sharon Haines Jacquet, Life Trustee
- Christine E. Larsen, Voting Trustee
- Douglas A. Present, Voting Trustee
- Kent Syverud, Chancellor (ex officio)
- Michael G. Thonis, Voting Trustee
- Kathleen A. Walters, Board Chair (ex officio)
- Howard E. Woolley, Voting Trustee
About Syracuse University
Syracuse University is a private research university that advances knowledge across disciplines to drive breakthrough discoveries and breakout leadership. Our collection of 13 schools and colleges with over 200 customizable majors close the gap between education and action, so students can take on the world. In and beyond the classroom, we connect people, perspectives, and practices to solve interconnected challenges with interdisciplinary approaches. Together, we’re a powerful community that moves ideas, individuals and impact beyond what’s possible.