Newsletter Article

Diversity Steering Committee Updates

Psychology's longstanding Diversity Steering Committee (DSC), which is co-chaired by faculty and graduate students, meets regularly as a unit and with department leadership to discuss and address diversity-related issues facing our department. The department has continued to support the DSC through the allocation of funds for an hourly department RA position to compensate students (about 10 per quarter) for their DEI efforts. The DSC prioritizes activities each year, and recent activities include hosting an outreach Sneak Peek event to support graduate recruitment, developing a method to audit syllabi with respect to DEI content, supporting faculty to increase the inclusivity of their syllabi with DEI office hours, and creating and disseminating a departmental climate survey.

Virtual Sneak Peek Graduate Recruitment Event

The DSC hosted its first Sneak Peek virtual recruitment event this past September, welcoming 144 attendees from all the department's core research areas to a live Zoom event. The DSC virtual recruitment committee is actively working with the Graduate Recruitment Committee to determine the event's reach and impact on graduate applicants. The DSC received overall positive feedback about the 2021 virtual event and will incorporate changes to the fall 2022 event based on participant responses. 

Syllabus Review

The syllabus task force continued to review faculty's graduate course syllabi and are developing an undergraduate syllabus review process for future use. Other UW departments recognized the quality of the syllabus review team's process and expressed a hope to implement their own syllabi reviews based on UW Psychology's model. 

Climate Survey

The climate survey team presented results of the 2020 climate survey at the fall faculty retreat. They also met with Liliana Lengua (Child Clinical Area), the DSC faculty representative to the Strategic Planning Committee (SPC), to discuss policy recommendations/changes based on 2021 survey results. The climate survey team will present these survey results at SPC in the next quarter. The team also created an abbreviated climate survey to be disseminated in years between the longer, biannual survey.

Please connect with the DSC by viewing our updates and listserv information under the Diversity tab on the Psychology Department's website. 

If you are interested in supporting the critical work of the DSC, consider a gift to the Psychology Diversity Fund. This fund provides financial assistance to graduate students in the department with a demonstrated interest and active role in advancing diversity and equity. With your generous support, we can fund DSC-specific RA positions for students to work on DEI and social justice initiatives. 

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