DEI Strategic Action Plan

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Strategic Action Plan

(adopted Fall 2021)

The Moody College of Communication is committed to a culture of inclusion and equity in which all of our students, faculty, staff, and visitors are welcome and respected. We believe that embracing diversity, within our faculty, staff, students, and curricula, creates a beneficial atmosphere for teaching, learning, and inquiry, and is a necessary condition for preparing our students to succeed in a diverse world and to change it for the better. (Read our full Diversity Statement at https://moody.utexas.edu/diversity/about)

Background 

To ensure we are living up to our core commitment of creating a more equitable, diverse, and just environment within the Moody College of Communication, this Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Strategic Action Plan was drafted during the Fall 2020 semester, in the Spring 2021 semester, and finalized in Summer 2021. This plan outlines actionable steps for Moody College to implement in accordance with the needs of our faculty, staff, and students.  The primary intention of this plan is to create a learning and working environment that is equitable, inclusive, and just; and where individual differences are valued and serve as a source of collective empowerment.  Individual units within Moody College are encouraged to develop their own DEI Action Plans, linked to this plan, to meet the unique needs and challenges of their units.

Mindful of the important diversity-related issues concerning college campuses across the country, the Moody College DEI Committee developed the following specific recommendations to bring greater focus to our current efforts and strengthen a spirit of inclusion across all our programs.  This plan outlines recommended and/or required policies and practices that support tangible goals and measurable outcomes designed to detect and disrupt patterns of bias.  These goals and actions provide Moody College with a plan of action and accountability to meet and exceed our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.


Objective 1: Establish and maintain an equitable and inclusive culture and climate in Moody College.

Actions:

  1. Conduct a biennial DEI Climate Survey, share the findings within the college, and use the results to establish and prioritize initiatives within the college that create and sustain a more equitable culture and climate.
  2. Conduct regular audits and analyses on college data related to gender, race, ethnicity, age, socioeconomic background, recruitment, hiring, promotion, pay, workloads, and/or retention to promote equity in the learning and work environment, and share the findings within the college.
  3. Offer targeted mentoring and support to address the specific needs of our historically underrepresented faculty, staff, and students to help increase research, scholarship, and program funding.
  4. Host an annual DEI Town Hall to create a forum where the Moody community feels safe to speak on issues centered on equity, inclusion, access, and justice, and to assess overall progress toward our goals.
  5. Establish faculty, staff, and student recognitions and awards to support and incentivize the advancement of diversity, equity, and inclusion within Moody College.
  6. Require all members of Faculty Search Committees to complete Implicit Bias training offered by the university.
  7. Require applicants in all faculty searches to submit a Diversity Statement as part of their application materials.
  8. Provide training and learning opportunities on diversity, equity, and inclusion, especially for supervisors and managers, to assist with overall professional development.

Objective 2: Provide strong support for a diverse and inclusive student experience.

Actions:

  1. Offer formal diversity training and learning opportunities for all incoming and returning Moody College students to increase cultural competency.
  2. Conduct targeted efforts and develop pipeline initiatives toward the recruitment, retention, and graduation of a more diverse and representative student body at the undergraduate and graduate levels.
  3. Develop pipelines with local and state high schools and two-year colleges to support the recruitment of a more diverse undergraduate student body within Moody College.
  4. Assess demand to inform potential planning of a formal system of mentoring available for underrepresented minority (URM) students within Moody College.
  5. Provide guidance and support for students pursuing research and scholarship in underrepresented and innovative courses of study.
  6. Require that Minority Liaisons and/or Equity and Inclusion Officers in each unit serve on and/or actively advise graduate student admissions committees.
  7. Recommend that all admissions committees include an advanced graduate student as a member or advisor.
  8. Offer all new faculty hires training centered on supporting diverse students during new employee orientation.

Objective 3: Support innovative and inclusive teaching, scholarship, and service.

Actions:

  1. Train (using facilitated discussions, online modules, and group workshops) and support our faculty on diversifying their pedagogical frameworks and course content to utilize anti-racist and anti-sexist methods and ensure engagement with a diverse student body. 
  2. Expand the portfolio of guest speakers and part-time lecturers to include more diverse and inclusive experts, experiences, and voices in the classroom. 
  3. Incorporate increased diversity and multicultural education into the undergraduate Moody College curricula through course modules and/or flagged courses.
  4. Develop and implement a formal system of mentoring for tenure-track faculty at the assistant and associate professor ranks, ensuring that URM faculty participate in this program and that their specific needs are assessed and addressed.
  5. Encourage and support innovative and collaborative teaching, scholarship, and service among all faculty.
  6. Require faculty to include completed DEI training and activities on annual FAR service reviews.

Download DEI Strategic Action Plan (PDF)