Several years ago, Cedar Crest College (CCC) established a Diversity & Inclusion (D&I) Task Force to address issues students faced related to D&I. Several councils and committees were formed as a result of that task force's report with faculty, staff and administration leading the efforts. The report also indicated that students needed a safe, social, prominent space to express themselves and that would act as an area for these committees to report and utilize resources.
Among the councils and committees formed as a result of the D&I Task Force were the Bias Response Team cochaired by the Dean of Student Life and the Director of D&I, Diversity Trainers co-chaired by the Director of D&I and the Director of Community Engagement, and the Student Diversity Council chaired by one of the Inclusion Advocates of the CDI. The Student Diversity Council is made up of the presidents of multi-cultural, diverse and marginalized student organizations.
The Center for Diversity and Inclusion (CDI) also moved from the basement of a campus residence hall to a historic building on campus that was fully renovated. As part of its mission, the CDI provides programming, safe social spaces and opportunities for D&I education, support and advocacy for all members of the CCC community. Members of the CCC community seek out the leadership and voice of the campus when events take place against marginalized groups.
The CDI also houses the offices of International Student Services, Office of Global Initiatives and the office of the Executive Director of Diversity and Inclusion. There is also space for eight Inclusion Advocates (IAs) who lead the programming for the CDI in collaboration with the needs of CCC's diverse and underrepresented student populations. The IAs are trained student workers.
In 2019-2020, the CDI hosted a total of 89 events in collaboration with other offices at CCC. There was a total of 1,800 attendees including students, faculty/staff/administration and community members. The CDI also provides support for the more than 15 committees and councils that are made up of over 62 faculty/ staff/ administration/ alumnae and students.