"Within our sphere of influence as educators, we can collaborate with colleagues from marginalized communities, learn to listen and to lead effectively, and acknowledge our own shortcomings as we support students from all backgrounds.""
- Erica Ledesma – Diversity Abroad
Baker College strives to ensure that all of our programs, institutional goals and events, and commitments are open to all constituencies of students, staff, faculty, community members, employees and participants. As an institution of higher learning committed to new knowledge and innovation, we understand that true excellence and attainment comes from diversity of individuals who are fully a part of all of our institutional endeavors.
To achieve inclusive campus professional and learning environments, we interact with a variety of organizations and institutions in various disciplines and contexts. We seek to be exemplars in practice of diversity, equity, and inclusion by working in communion with multiples levels of professional representation throughout our college system. We are committed to our initiatives to fully understand how and why we can advance our levels of diversity, equity and inclusion.
In order to achieve our goals, we expect all of our faculty, staff, and students to participate in these efforts and both teach and learn about the dynamics of diversity, equity, and inclusion. We will accomplish our goals by:
Actively acknowledging our privileges and openly discussing them.
- Listening more and speaking less.
- Acting out of a sincere interest in challenging larger oppressive power structures and violent, segregating social climates.
- Supporting and making use of our privilege for the people we seek to work with, in unity.
What do we mean by "Diversity," "Equity," and "Inclusion?"
Diversity is the range of human differences, including but not limited to race, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, social class, physical ability or attributes, religious or ethical values system, national origin, and political beliefs.
Equity is the fair treatment, access, opportunity, and advancement for all people, while at the same time striving to identify and eliminate barriers that have prevented the full participation of some groups.
Inclusion is involvement and empowerment, where the inherent worth and dignity of all people are recognized. An inclusive university promotes and sustains a sense of belonging; it values and practices respect for the talents, beliefs, backgrounds, and ways of living of its members.
Who is an Ally? Who is an Advocate?
An ally will mostly engage in activism by standing with an individual or group in a marginalized community.
An Ally is someone who supports and stands up for the rights and dignity of individuals and identity groups other than their own. "Ally" is actually a verb because it is an active process of unlearning and learning.
Allyship is not an identity—it is a lifelong process of building relationships based on trust, consistency, and accountability with marginalized individuals and/or groups of people. Allyship is not self-defined.
An Advocate (or accomplice) will focus more on dismantling the structures that oppress that individual or group—and such work will be directed by the stakeholders in the marginalized group.