Brewer retires from Mason County schools
DCI – Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.
These three important and high profile terms are more than fashionable at Maysville Community and Technical College.
The MCTC scored 32 out of 34 points for its newly approved plan to improve these three elements of fairness. Kentucky and Eastern Kentucky University, among the eight public universities in Kentucky.
“We were delighted with our score and above all proud of the institutional work that has led to the implementation of strategies, programs and services that better meet the needs and support the success of diverse students,” said Jessica Kern, Principal MCTC Student Affairs and lead author of the plan.
The annual report is reviewed by CPE in accordance with the assessment of the Diversity Plan report, which assesses: (1) progress towards the achievement of objectives, (2) evidence that the identified strategies are being implemented with fidelity, ( 3) analysis of the effectiveness of the strategy, and (4) lessons learned from this analysis and related next steps.
Kern particularly praised the efforts of Millicent Harding-Thomas, Director of Cultural Diversity, who has day-to-day responsibility for planning activities and programs in support of FDI goals.
“This institution’s diversity goals go far beyond what we can do on our own,” said Harding-Thomas. “Our ongoing challenge is to constantly educate other members of our community to understand these values and to become personally involved through collaboration. “
MCTC Interim President / CEO Russell Ward shares his pride in the statewide recognition of the new DCI plan.
“We are getting more buy-in from faculty, staff and students and are making real progress on this important initiative,” Ward said. “Two years ago our plan was rejected, but now we are at the top in terms of potential impact. “
For those unfamiliar with the three components of DCI, a common definition of diversity includes, but is not limited to, race, color, ethnicity, nationality, religion, socioeconomic status, social status, veteran, education, marital status, language, age, sex, gender expression and / or identity, sexual orientation, mental or physical abilities, genetic information and learning styles.
Equity is the guarantee of fair treatment, access, opportunity and advancement for all while striving to identify and remove barriers that have prevented the full participation of certain groups. The principle of equity recognizes that there are historically underserved and under-represented populations.
Inclusion means bringing traditionally excluded individuals and / or groups into processes, activities and decision / policy making in a way that shares power and ensures equal access to opportunities and resources.
Diversity activist Verna Myers coined the phrase, “Diversity is invited to the party. Inclusion is invited to dance.
As an example of the collaboration, Harding-Thomas said that a suggestion from Brianna Whitten, associate professor of English, results in the development of a Holocaust memorial daffodil garden on each of MCTC’s four campuses. The Maysville Garden opened earlier this year.
Carrie Taylor, the faculty’s horticultural specialist, also worked with Harding-Thomas to help bring the project to fruition. Whitten was a Belfer Fellow at the US Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, DC
“When these beautiful yellow flowers bloom each spring, everyone will gently be reminded of the tragic story of religious persecution and why we must always respect each other’s beliefs,” said Harding-Thomas.
Kern added that collaboration between individuals and groups is essential to the success of any diversity initiative.
“It’s important to have a good plan, but we need everyone’s commitment to make it happen,” she said.
For more information on MCTC, go online at maysville.kctcs.edu.