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In 2016, President Faust’s Presidential Task Force on Inclusion and Belonging was convened to ensure “that Harvard continues to attract the most talented people from all walks of life and creates an environment where we can be our best selves.” Dean Doyle echoed that commitment when he named the SEAS Diversity Task Force in the spring of 2017. That SEAS staff task force was charged to “examine our current diversity ethos and suggest how we may improve it as well as serve as conduit to the University Task Force.” In June 2017, the task force submitted a report that highlighted current initiatives to increase the representation of females and underrepresented minorities across the SEAS community, and presented recommendations to improve diversity and inclusion in the School. As part of a continuous, long-term process of building and improving a culture of openness, caring, and community at SEAS, Dean Doyle implemented two of the recommendations for immediate action: hire an Administrative Fellow to develop long-term interventions and retain and expand the taskforce to include members of the undergraduate, graduate, faculty, postdoctoral researcher populations.
Alexis Stokes, the SEAS Diversity and Inclusion Engagement Launch Senior Manager, started in August 2017 through the Administrative Fellows Program in the Office of the Assistant to the President for Institutional Diversity and Equity. During her first months at SEAS, she conducted a listening tour to begin learning about the SEAS priorities, goals and concerns as they relate to making the school a more diverse and inclusive place for students, faculty, staff and researchers. She met with members of the community and compiled a list of strengths, challenges, and opportunities. The report can be found here.
In October 2017, Dean Doyle convened a new standing committee called the SEAS Committee on Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging. The committee held its first meeting on November 30, 2017 and established five priority areas:
Recruitment and Access
Retention and Success
Assessment and Tracking
Outreach to the Broader External Community
These areas will serve as subcommittees of the SEAS Committee on Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging.
To create a long-term (e.g., five-year) strategic plan that is based on qualitative and quantitative data and evidence-based best practices, for increasing the diversity of SEAS and cultivating a more inclusive and welcoming environment for all stakeholder groups. The strategic plan will: outline how SEAS defines diversity and inclusion; articulate a rationale; and formulate specific, measurable goals. The committee will also develop strategies, initiatives, and programs that will advance the diversity goals, and assist relevant offices, departments, and stakeholder groups with the systematic implementation of the plan. In addition, the committee is charged with creating opportunities for community-wide engagement and feedback, as well as continuous assessment and updating of the SEAS Diversity Strategic Plan.
Alexis Stokes, chair, Director of Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging
Krzysztof Gajos, co-chair, Gordon McKay Professor of Computer Science
Diane Schneeberger, co-chair, Assistant Dean for Faculty Affairs
Vinny Manoharan, Wagner Family Professor of Chemical Engineering and Professor of Physics
Robert Westervelt, Mallinckrodt Professor of Applied Physics and Physics
Katelyn Federico, Senior Institutional Research Analyst
Kathryn Hollar, Director of Community Engagement and Diversity Outreach
Christina Zaldana, Administrator of Advising Programs and Diversity Outreach
Alexis Stokes, Diversity and Inclusion Engagement Launch Senior Manager
Paul Karoff, ex officio, Assistant Dean for Communications and Strategic Priorities
Stephanie Vincent, Faculty Coordinator
Veronique Corrdin, Assistant Director of Research Administration and Finance
Sarah Iams, Assistant Director of Undergraduate Studies in Applied Mathematics; Lecturer of Applied Mathematics
Patrick Ulrich, Associate Director for Undergraduate Studies in Environmental Science & Engineering
Gladys Prins, Faculty Coordinator
Jose (Rafa) Hernandez (’19, Computer Science, SEAS Student Diversity Committee)
Christina Qiu (’19, Applied Mathematics, SEAS Student Diversity Committee)
Abby Lyons (’18, Computer Science, WICS)
Emily Jia ('20, Mathematics and Computer Science)
Tobias Egle (Material Science and Mechanical Engineering - Grad Council Co-president)
Nicole Black (Bioengineering)
Buse Aktas (Mechanical Engineering, Robotics)
Isaac Lage (Computer Science)
Saraf Nawar (Applied Physics)
Herdeline Ardoña (Parker Group)
Benjamin Freedman (Mooney Group)
You can learn more about committee membership by clicking here. If you are interested in serving on the SEAS Committee on Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.