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CSULB Faculty & Staff Diversity Plan

August 2010

Overview

CSULB is a highly diverse university located in one of the most diverse regions of the U.S., in a location with a global outlook on the Pacific Rim and the world. Our diversity has multiple dimensions including race, ethnicity, language, national origin, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, ability, and socio-economic circumstances, among other cultural identities and experiences. Our appreciation of diversity includes an awareness of the many issues and challenges that confront underrepresented groups. Given this awareness, it is important that all of our students, faculty, and staff perceive that the University is committed to creating a more welcoming and inclusive environment within which they learn and work.

CSULB's approach to diversity is informed by key principles:

  • Student Success: CSULB seeks to prepare students to function effectively in a diverse, global society. This requires that the campus understand and appreciate diversity and infuse it into the curriculum, into the student, faculty and staff populations, and into the fabric of the institution.
  • Academic Freedom: CSULB always seeks to uphold the fundamental principle of intellectually rigorous, open and honest inquiry.
  • Respect: CSULB seeks to create and support a climate of respect for all individuals and all dimensions of diversity.
  • Appreciation: CSULB seeks to encourage appreciation for the richness and intrinsic intellectual value of diversity.
  • Inclusiveness: CSULB welcomes faculty, staff, students, and visitors who mirror all of the dimensions of diversity.
  • Engagement: CSULB seeks to engage individuals to work collaboratively and socialize across group boundaries. We seek to accomplish this in the classroom, in extra-curricular environments, and throughout the workplace.
  • Equity: CSULB seeks to distribute educational and employment opportunities, support and resources to serve needs of all groups equitably, with no bias or preferences.
  • Modeling: CSULB seeks to create a diverse environment and model productive relationships in order to be effective in preparing students for a global society.
  • Academic Quality: CSULB always seeks to maintain the highest quality in our academic offerings, particularly through the expertise of those we hire.

As a campus we regard all of these principles as vitally important to the success of the institution. Making decisions that achieve optimal balance among these principles is complex, especially in the very difficult budgetary climate that we now face. Key to realizing our goal is the development and implementation of a campus plan for further diversifying CSULB's faculty and staff. This strategic plan articulates four action areas for augmenting current programs and implementing new ones:

  1. Education and Training
  2. Recruitment
  3. Retention and Campus Climate
  4. Assessment

With these principles in mind, it is imperative that we evaluate our current campus progress and the steps we must take in the future to ensure that we are not only meeting the needs of our students but also adjusting to the changing dynamics of a globally diverse society.

Diversity Recruitment Trends: Current Status & Progress

As the relevant offices prepare for new diversity initiatives that will be feasible to pursue in this fiscal environment, it is important to first gauge our progress during the first decade of the twenty-first century. Data provided by the CSULB Office of Institutional Research and Assessment reveals that the campus has made considerable gains. During this period, from fall 2001 to fall 2009, there has been a net increase in tenured & tenure track faculty of color from 189 to 276 or 23% to 31%. Our demographic representation among faculty of color exceeds the national average. However, our progress has been mitigated by challenges with faculty retention. The largest increase occurred among Asian and Asian American tenured & tenure track faculty, rising from 115 to 170 or 13.9% to 19.1% over that nine year period. Hispanic/Latino(a) tenured and tenured track faculty have increased from 38 to 63 or 4.6% to 7.1%.With these increases, there has been a corresponding decrease among white tenured and tenure track faculty, from 73% to 67%. With respect to other groups of color, net gains among American Indian and African American tenured and tenure track faculty have been limited. The former group has doubled from 3 to 6; but, the latter group reflects the least growth among groups of color, rising from 33 to 37 or 4.0% to 4.2%. Interestingly, 27 African Americans have been hired since 2000; the numbers suggest that, in addition to retirement, several African American faculty have departed for other reasons that include family concerns, a better offer, failure to achieve tenure, or department climate. Multiple factors have contributed to what, in effect, is a virtual replacement trend in relation to this group. This trend signals a need to focus on retention as much as recruitment in the years ahead.

Although there is a great deal of work to be done in relation to faculty diversity, staff diversity is equally important to the campus community. Among the staff, particularly the managers (MPPs), fewer opportunities exist given the limited number of positions which become available in the various categories. Despite these challenges, significant improvements have occurred during this decade. Cumulatively, managers of color have increased from 47 in 2001 to 73 in 2009, or 23% to 33%.In fact, the highest increase is evident among Latinos(as), who increased from 10 to 28 or 4.9% to 12.7% during this period. With clear strategic goals which assist search committees in their efforts to achieve highly qualified and diverse applicant pools, this positive trend should continue among both the management and the staff generally.

CSULB is located in a region in which student diversity has increased very rapidly in the past two decades. In relation to student diversity, our progress among faculty and staff has been gradual. The availability of doctorates among women and people of color in the respective disciplines, in part, affects the rate at which we are able to achieve diversity. With respect to faculty recruitment, the number of international applicants continues to rise fairly rapidly. Comparatively, the number of American Ph.D.s of color has increased more gradually; these potential applicants must be identified by employing well conceived recruitment strategies. In the short term, our budgetary constraints and the dismal state economy have adversely affected our recruitment efforts for new faculty and staff; for example, we have six faculty recruitments that have been conducted during AY 2009/10, as compared to approximately seventy-five recruitments that were conducted in AY 2007/08. Nonetheless, the proposed retention programs designed for faculty and staff will favorably impact our campus community and immediately benefit our highly diverse student body.

Faculty/Staff Diversity and Student Success

Central to CSULB's mission is the academic success of our students. The composition of the faculty and the staff is critical to fulfilling that mission. The University's graduation rates have been improving for more than a decade and it has focused on attracting and graduating students of color, with some notable successes.

  • From 1996 to 2009, CSULB's overall six-year freshman graduation rate nearly doubled nearly 54%.The African American graduation rate more than tripled to 46%, the largest gain of any subgroup. Latino and Asian rates more than doubled to 46% and 55%, respectively. Rates for Native American and white students increased to 61% and 59%, about one and one half times earlier levels. Females graduation rates increased to 55% and males more than doubled to 50%.
  • In 2009, Diverse Issues in Higher Education ranked the University 6th nationally among all institutions conferring bachelor's degrees to students of color.
  • CSULB is about 18% above the CSU system average for African American students, 5% above for Latinos, 4.5% above for Asians, 6% above for Native Americans, and 4.5% above for white students. CSULB is about 6.5% above for females but 5% above for males.
  • CSULB's graduation rates were above the average of seventy-five similar public master's institutions in 2007 (the latest available national data). CSULB's increases since then are estimated to place the University's graduation rates among the top 10 percent of these institutions. CSULB's graduation rates are among the top 10 percent for underrepresented students, Latinos, African-Americans, and white students .For Asian and Asian-American students, increases are estimated to place the university among the top 20 percent.
  • CSULB's most recent graduation rates place the institution at or near the top of 27 reporting Hispanic serving public master's institutions in graduating Hispanic/Latino and Asian American students, while ranking third in the nation for African American students.

Our highly accomplished and committed faculty and staff have been indispensable to these achievements. As our fiscal outlook improves, our energies will be directed toward implementing our staff and faculty recruitment initiatives and accelerating our transition to an even more diverse employee community. An increasingly diverse employee community will be critical to meeting the needs of our students in this competitive global economy. The four action areas, noted below, will be central to achieving greater faculty diversity. The core principles from this strategic plan will be applied to staff recruitment and incorporated in those protocols, across the divisions, as well.

Four Action Areas

1. Education and Training

  • Expand diversity content in the current faculty recruitment and hiring workshops and training sessions provided by the Office of Faculty Affairs and the Office of Equity and Diversity.
  • Design, provide, and require an on-line faculty diversity recruitment/hiring module for search committee members, department chairs, and associate deans.
  • The Essentials for Managers Certificate Program will include diversity recruitment strategies in its current non-discrimination training session provided by the Office of Equity and Diversity.
  • The Supervisory Skills Certificate Program, designed for bargaining unit supervisors, will include diversity training.
  • Staff Human Resources, in collaboration with the Office of Equity and Diversity, will create and conduct additional training and information sessions, pertaining to issues of diversity, for the benefit of all managers and hiring authorities.

2. Recruitment

When recruiting diverse faculty and staff, the definition of diversity must be advanced in its broadest terms to include: race, ethnicity, bi or multi-lingual knowledge, national origin, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, and ability, among other cultural identities and experiences.

It will be critical to attract individual candidates who understand the value of diversity and possess experiences and subject matter interests which both enhance the University's curriculum and foster equal access to higher education.

A. Expanded Faculty Recruitment Initiative

  • Hire candidates who can articulate a commitment to, or demonstrate expertise in, effectively educating a diverse student population. Examples of commitment and expertise might include teaching, research, creative activity, or community service in low-income communities or at minority-serving institutions.
  • Encourage applicants to provide in application materials substantial evidence of commitment to, or expertise in, educating a diverse student population or, if relevant to the discipline, include evidence of research or creative activity related to diverse communities.
  • The central administration will work with academic deans and department chairs to ensure that hiring processes include strong evaluation of candidates commitment to, or expertise in, educating a diverse student population
  • Develop a strategy that better tracks the progress of recent CSULB graduates who have pursued terminal degrees at other campuses nationally. Remain actively engaged in their recruitment thereafter.
  • CSULB faculty should identify diverse graduate students in their discipline and initiate a long term exchange (communicating via e-mail or other social media) and, if feasible, develop a mentoring relationship. As a consequence, such courting should result in diverse hires over an extended period of time.
  • When hiring levels resume, deans will be invited to solicit input from chairs and then propose positions that are more likely to generate a highly diverse applicant pool. Chairs should solicit input from faculty to determine which subject areas, within the college, might garner a more diverse applicant pool while also meeting the academic mission of the various colleges. Such subject areas should fill a curricular need and have a strong probability of generating significant student enrollment in the proposed or revived courses.
  • The Office of Equity and Diversity will continue to provide the deans with data from the annual Affirmative Action Report that reveals any instances of underutilization on the basis of race or gender in their respective departments. While this data should be shared with department chairs and search committees, it may only be considered in the recruitment process, not in the selection process.

B. Tenure–Track Searches

  • Position descriptions must describe an expected commitment to, or expertise in, educating a diverse student population as essential qualifications.
  • Where appropriate, departments will be encouraged to design tenure-track position descriptions that define the area(s) of teaching and scholarly emphasis in broad terms, potentially attracting a more diverse applicant pool.
  • Departments are urged to convene diverse faculty search committees. Departments should assemble search committees that include expertise in evaluating both a commitment to and expertise in educating a diverse student population.
  • Search committees should utilize the Minority and Women Doctoral Directory (MWDD), the Chancellor's Doctoral Incentive Program Directory of Recipients, and the UC President's Postdoctoral Fellowship Program list of current fellows as resources for recruitment. (Located in the Office of Equity and Diversity)
  • Search committees should contact ethnic, gender, and LGBT caucus representatives within their professional associations and utilize professional e-mail lists among colleagues in an effort to contact the broadest range of potential candidates.

C. Meetings with Search Committees

The AVP for Faculty Affairs and the Director of the Office Equity and Diversity will meet with each dean and the corresponding search committees to discuss recruitment issues and challenges related to the discipline, further develop the Recruitment and Advertising Plan, and discuss additional ways to enrich the diversity of the applicant pool.

D. Support Visiting Faculty

Take greater advantage of the CSULB allocation from the CSU (unfunded) of up to 11 Visiting Faculty positions each year. These positions have the potential to add diversity to the campus community by providing departments with the opportunity to bring high quality teacher/scholars to campus, creating a more favorable climate for underrepresented students and faculty on the campus. Goals for these one-year, non-renewable hires should include:

  • satisfying the curricular needs of the department while providing diverse perspectives that will enhance the curriculum in order to prepare our student body for the global 21stcentury economy.

E. Faculty Thematic Hires and Cluster Hires

When more substantial hiring resumes, some academic positions may be authorized by the Provost that focus on thematic issues likely to generate highly diverse applicant pools .Positions will be authorized in departments where increased diversification is particularly desirable. These thematic recruitments will constitute a portion of each year's hires.

Additionally, important considerations will be given to those academic areas demonstrating increased student demand and where student enrollment has consistently grown. In consultation with the deans and chairs, the Provost will select broadly defined themes within each college that have a strong likelihood of garnering more diverse applicant pools.

F. Staff and Administrator Recruitment

  • Staff Human Resources will maintain a resource directory of websites and links to professional organizations designated to women and people of color.The directory will be updated and provided to hiring managers on a regular basis.
  • The Office of Equity and Diversity will continue to provide the vice presidents data from the annual Affirmative Action Report that reveals any instances of underutilization on the basis of race or gender in their respective departments. That information should guide their hiring managers during the recruitment process in their efforts to develop more diverse and highly qualified applicant pools. However, the information must not be considered in the selection process.

3. Retention and Campus Climate

  • Exit Interviews for Faculty: The Office of Faculty Affairs will implement an exit interview process for faculty who elect to leave CSULB. Departing faculty will have the option of speaking to someone other than a University administrator.
  • Expanded Exit Interview Process for Staff and Administrators: The current staff and administrator exit interview program, facilitated by Staff Human Resources, will include questions pertaining to campus climate and diversity on campus. Data will be analyzed and shared with University leaders in an effort to identify patterns and address particular concerns.
  • Mentoring: The Office of Faculty Affairs, in collaboration with the Faculty Center for Professional Development, will expand and further develop a faculty mentoring program for new faculty to facilitate networking and social engagement with the campus community. The mentoring program will provide a plan to include support and guidance for the reappointment, tenure, and promotion process (RTP), one-on-one mentoring, and increased opportunities for social engagement. Faculty representatives of the cultural affinity groups will be identified on the Faculty Center for Professional Development's website. In addition, the Center will provide opportunities for faculty to meet members of the affinity groups in an informal setting.

4. Assessment

The Office of Institutional Research will gather, annually, campus data specific to the strategic plan for further diversifying the faculty, including comparing campus data to national data from sources that provide information specific to faculty hiring and demography (e.g., National Opinion Research Center that records annual Ph.D.s granted per discipline, by race and gender and Collaborative on Academic Careers in Higher Education that surveys PhD candidates and tenure-track faculty in the U.S.) . This data will be posted on the Office of Institutional Research website and can be used by various campus constituencies to assess and interpret our campus progress.

Campus Commitment

Despite the challenges confronting California public universities during this national fiscal crisis, the state economy still depends on these institutions to produce the skilled labor integral to our recovery. The demography of California continues to change rapidly and our workforce will naturally follow the trends that our student population reflects. However, this increase in employee diversity must occur intentionally, accompanied by the strategic and thoughtful framework of University practices and policies that are essential for timely progress. Our recruitment and retention successes will be measured not only by numbers but also by the cultural competency that our institution engenders. To that end, the campus leadership will make every effort to ensure that continued and perceptible improvement occurs.

As the University implements the provisions of this plan, it will seek to reinforce existing partnerships with the Long Beach Unified School District and Long Beach City College, as well as other neighboring K-12 districts and community colleges in the region. Collectively, these stakeholders must assist the University in its development of a pipeline, extended to diverse, talented young students who may enter CSULB as undergraduates and return much later as attractive candidates for our faculty positions. Our faculty recruitment efforts remain international in scope. Nonetheless, our local and regional community exists as a resource for the development of highly qualified and diverse applicant pools. Without question, the pace of our progress will depend, in large measure, upon the state's and the nation's future investment in public education. Irrespective of these constraints, CSULB remains committed to access for academically qualified low income students and to creative approaches to faculty and staff recruitment and retention.