Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 53.50
Liaison Brad Haydel
Submission Date July 17, 2019
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

California State University, Los Angeles
PA-6: Support for Underrepresented Groups

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.58 / 3.00 Octavio Villalpando
Vice Provost
Office of the Vice Provost for Diversity and Inclusion
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have a publicly posted non-discrimination statement? :
Yes

The non-discrimination statement, including the website URL where the policy is publicly accessible:
Does the institution have a discrimination response protocol or committee (sometimes called a bias response team) to respond to and support those who have experienced or witnessed a bias incident, act of discrimination or hate crime?:
Yes

A brief description of the institution’s discrimination response protocol or team (including examples of actions taken during the previous three years):

The Office for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (OEDI) addresses claims of sexual misconduct, sexual harassment, dating and domestic violence, stalking, discrimination and harassment based on protected statuses. The OEDI also addresses retaliation complaints. Students, employees and third parties file the complaints. The OEDI reviews and investigates claims under the policies and procedures outlined in Executive Order 1096 (claims made by employees and third parties) and Executive Order 1097 (claims made by students).

At the initial intake meeting with the Complainant, the OEDI offers the Complainant services that may include:
1. Speaking with an advisor who supports the Complainant throughout the review and investigation process. Currently Cal State LA’s Sexual Assault Victim’s advocate for students is located at the Student Health Center.
2. Scheduling an appointment with a counselor at Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS), which is Cal State LA’s student counseling service. The counselors work confidentially with the Complainants and the Respondents. CAPS keeps time slots open throughout the week to meet with the OEDI referrals. As a result, the OEDI often calls to make appointments on the Complainant or the Respondent’s behalf.
3. Contacting the CARE Team, which is a resource for students, staff and faculty on campus who have concerns about alarming student behavior.
4. Providing information for the East Los Angeles Women’s Center—an off campus resource—which offers health services and support to women and men available 24/7 by calling 800.585.6231.
5. Providing information for the Rape Treatment Center at Santa Monica—UCLA Medical Center, which provides free services to sexual assault victims 24/7 including forensic services, emergency medical care and longer term therapy. The contact number for the Rape Treatment Center is 424.259.7208.
6. Providing information for LifeMatters (Employee Assistance Program), which assists employees with work, life, family and their well-being.

After the initial intake meeting, the OEDI speaks with witnesses. The OEDI also informs the Respondent of the Complainant’s claims(s) against the Respondent and meets with the Respondent to provide the Respondent with the opportunity to respond to the complaint. The OEDI accepts evidence to review during the meeting. Ultimately, the OEDI determines whether the Complainant’s allegation(s) meets the threshold to open an investigation or whether an early resolution is most appropriate.

Examples of Interim Remedies are below:
1. NO CONTACT AGREEMENT: Provides both the Complainant and the Respondent with an agreement and terms that both parties sign and agree to. The agreement requires the Respondent to avoid any contact with the Complainant and requires the Complainant to avoid any contact with the Respondent. “Avoid any contact” includes, but is not limited to, unnecessarily staying in the same area or classroom as the other party, communicating with one another in any fashion including writing, by telephone, through messages from friends, text messages or by any other means. The purpose of the no contact agreement is to allow the Complainant to feel comfortable on campus without fearing that the Respondent will continue the alleged behavior towards the Complainant and—in some cases—provide the OEDI with the opportunity to conduct an investigation without additional incidents occurring.
2. CHANGE IN WORK ENVIRONMENT, SCHOOL ASSIGNMENTS, HOUSING, SUPERVISORY REPORTING RELATIONSHIPS AND WORK ASSIGNMENTS: The OEDI often emails professors on students’ behalf to request extra time to turn in an assignment or for an alternative time to take an exam. The purpose is to allow the student to attend meetings such as mandatory court appearances and to relieve the student of certain academic obligations while they process and recover from traumatic events.
3. TRAINING: There are instances where training will suffice to address the Respondent’s alleged behavior.

If the OEDI determines that an investigation is necessary to resolve the Complainant’s claims, the OEDI notifies the Complainant—by email—that the OEDI accepted the Complainant’s complaint for an investigation. Within the email, the OEDI includes a summary document which describes the investigation process and procedures. The OEDI also notifies the Respondent—by email—that the Complainant filed a complaint against the Respondent, that the OEDI is investigating the allegation, details of the complaint including date(s) that the alleged incident(s) took place, a request that the Respondent meet with the OEDI, the contact information for the students’ Respondent Advisor (if the Respondent is a student) and relevant documents for the Respondent to review including the applicable Executive Order, a summary document of the Respondent’s rights and the investigation process and procedures.

During the initial meeting with the Respondent, the OEDI offers the same resources that the OEDI offers to the Complainant, which may include:

1. Speaking with an advisor who supports the Respondent throughout the review and investigation process. Employees may also bring their union representative to serve as their advisor.
2. Scheduling an appointment with a counselor at Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS), which is Cal State LA’s student counseling service. The counselors work confidentially with the Complainants and the Respondents. CAPS keeps time slots open throughout the week to meet with the OEDI referrals. As a result, the OEDI often calls to make an appointment on the Complainant or the Respondent’s behalf.
3. Contacting the CARE Team, which is a resource for students, staff and faculty on campus who have concerns about alarming student behavior.
4. Providing information for LifeMatters, which is a company that assists employees with concerns regarding work, life, family and their well-being.

Throughout the investigation, the OEDI continues to work with the Complainant, the Respondent and witnesses to provide them with support by meeting with them to address their concerns, providing them with updates regarding the investigation status and contacting professors to ask for academic support.

After the OEDI submits the Final Investigation Report, the OEDI provides the Respondent and the Complainant with information to appeal the decision to the Chancellor’s Office, should the Respondent or the Complainant decide to do so.

If the case involves an allegation of sexual misconduct, the case goes to an administrative hearing and the hearing officer determines the findings of policy violations. Throughout the investigation—until the hearing officer determines the finding—the OEDI may engage in the early resolution process with the Complainant and the Respondent.

In cases of student Respondents, the Office of the Dean of Students determines the appropriate sanctions for a Respondent who violates the Executive Order.

Cal State LA distributes the following information to the campus.

California State University, Los Angeles, does not permit discrimination on the basis of disability in admission to, access to, or operation of its instruction, programs, services, or activities, or in its hiring and employment practices. Also, the University does not permit unlawful harassment based on a protected disability. In addition, the University does not permit discrimination or unlawful harassment based on an applicant’s, employee’s, or student’s relationship with or association with anyone with a known protected disability.

Upon request, the University will consider a request for reasonable accommodation(s) when needed to facilitate the participation of qualified individuals with protected disabilities. Reasonable accommodations will be considered to permit qualified individuals with protected disabilities to: (a) complete the admission/employment process; (b) perform essential job functions; (c) participate in instruction, programs, services or activities; and, (d) enjoy other benefits and privileges of similarly situated individuals without disabilities.

Questions, concerns, complaints and requests for reasonable accommodation or additional information may be forwarded to Human Resources Management, Office for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, the campus office assigned responsibility for compliance with the ADA. The Office for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion is located in Administration 606 and is open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., (323) 343-3040, or TDD: (323) 343-3670.

In the past three (3) years, Cal State LA has addressed discrimination through trainings, personal apologies, mediation and investigations.

The OEDI has also investigated claims of discrimination and recommended sanctions for those found in violation of the Executive Order.

Systemwide Policy Prohibiting Discrimination, Harassment, Retaliation, Sexual Misconduct, Dating and Domestic Violence, and Stalking against Employees and Third Parties and Systemwide Procedure for Addressing Such Complaints by Employees and Third Parties Executive Order 1096:
https://calstate.policystat.com/policy/6743499/latest/

Systemwide Policy Prohibiting Discrimination, Harassment and Retaliation, Sexual Misconduct, Dating and Domestic Violence, and Stalking against Students and Systemwide Procedure for Addressing Such Complaints by Students Executive Order 1097:
http://www.calstate.edu/EO/EO-1097-rev-6-23-15.pdf

Systemwide Sex Discrimination, Sexual Harassment, Sexual Misconduct, Dating and Domestic Violence, and Stalking Policy Executive Order 1095:
https://calstate.policystat.com/policy/6741651/latest/

Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation Complaint Forms

Employees and Third Parties - Executive Order 1096 Form (PDF)
http://www.calstatela.edu/sites/default/files/groups/Human%20Resources%20Management/forms/oedi_cal_state_la_eo_1096_form.pdf

Students - Executive Order 1097 Form (PDF)
http://www.calstatela.edu/sites/default/files/groups/Human%20Resources%20Management/forms/oedi_cal_state_la_eo_1097_form.pdf


Does the institution have programs specifically designed to recruit students from underrepresented groups?:
No

Does the institution have programs specifically designed to recruit staff from underrepresented groups?:
No

Does the institution have programs specifically designed to recruit faculty from underrepresented groups?:
Yes

A brief description of the institution’s programs to recruit students, staff and/or faculty from underrepresented groups:

The Office of the Vice President of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion provides training to all search committees to establish a process that limits bias and assumptions that creep into the hiring process. This training assists the committee to expand the pool of applicants by helping them understand the connection of the students they serve and the faculty these students need. The training also assists the committee on how best to narrow the pool by exploring assumptions that can influence the evaluation process and techniques to minimize the influence if bias and assumptions. This approach was successful this last hiring year. Of the 43 new hires for 2019-2020, 23 were female; 21 of the hires identifies as Latino, 6 as African American, and 6 Asian or Asian American.


Does the institution have mentoring, counseling, peer support, academic support, or other programs to support students from underrepresented groups on campus?:
Yes

Does the institution have mentoring, counseling, peer support or other programs to support staff from underrepresented groups on campus?:
No

Does the institution have mentoring, counseling, peer support or other programs to support faculty from underrepresented groups on campus?:
Yes

A brief description of the institution’s programs to support students, staff and/or faculty from underrepresented groups:

For students:

Cal State LA is a Hispanic Serving Institution with a majority Latinx population (63% overall; 76% freshmen). The majority of our students (56%) report being first gen and 69% and are pell eligible. Because of this, our advising and student support efforts emphasize scaling practices that have been proven to be effective for our population. For example, to counter the fact that first-gen students of color often “find it difficult to navigate the world of college by themselves,” the institution should be offering “validation . . .an enabling, confirming and supportive process initiated by in and out-of-class agents” at the institution. One (Munoz and Rendon, 17).

Unlike traditional students, students in our population are less likely to seek advisement and tutoring and are more likely to feel uncomfortable asking questions (Munoz and Rendon, 17). Cal State LA has implemented a new advising system as well as e-advising tools that allow us to take a proactive approach. This is critical to our students: “Proactive measures to actually get students to take advantage of these services must also be in place. This means that college faculty and staff must be ready to actively reach out to students (as opposed to having student reach out to them first), be accessible, and be open to establishing close working relationships with students” (Munoz and Rendon, 26).

Rather than waiting for students to come to advisors, advisors reach out to students to encourage them, to keep them apprised of their progress, and to call them in for meetings if they show signs of being off track. Using EAB navigate, a platform that puts data, our advisors work as part of a coordinated care network to run “campaigns,” that have been proven to improve retention and graduation rates and to systematically eliminating the road blocks students traditionally encounter in higher education. These campaigns include assisting with early major declaration, taking 15 units per term to finish in four years, and facilitating the enrollment and passing of critical courses for their major. According to Complete College America, utilizing strategies to generate Momentum Pathways, such as clearly articulated academic road maps, and using proactive advising to monitor progress and provide strategic interventions will lead to more of our students completing their degree in four years.

In the area of learning assistance, we are also taking a more proactive approach that focuses on “meeting students where they are at,” in and out of the classroom. This past year, we launched a redesigned math curriculum to replace an outdated approach that required students to take remedial courses. Remedial courses have historically disadvantaged first-gen low-income students from historically underrepresented groups who were disproportionately placed into remedial courses. Our new approach places all students into college-level credit-bearing math courses and provides students who may need additional help with co-requisite courses that give them “just-in-time” support with material they may need extra help to master. We also implemented a new student support program, Smart Start, that targets all students in first-year Math. Using an Early Alert system, faculty let Smart Start know which students may be struggling in class. Smart Start has academic coaches that then reach out to those students and work with them on issues such as time management, test taking, preparing for class. Our coaches take an asset-based approach when they work with students, building on their strengths and personal experiences to help them build self-efficacy. In addition, Smart Start embeds peer study leaders in many of the classes and invites students to peer-led study sessions during the term as well as to special study sessions before each midterm and final. Our redesigned Math program has promising results after just one year. In 2016, 46% of the entering freshman class completed their general education math requirement by the end of their first year; in 2018, 76% of our first-year students completed their Math requirement.

We are also in the first phase of redesigning our Center for Academic Success (CAS) around asset-based proactive services. Changes we have made this year include the following: becoming more student-facing by creating an on-line appointment system; embedding tutors in courses with low completion rates, and increasing the visibility of our on-line tutoring to better support non-traditional students and commuters who are unable to be on campus during the day. Additionally, CAS has embarked on a new plan that includes developing on-line materials in Spanish as well as English.

Laura I. Rendon Linares and Susana M. Munoz, “Revisiting Validation Theory: Theoretical Foundations, Applications, and Extensions,” Enrollment Management Journal, Summer 2011 (pp 12-33)

Other programs to support students.
1. CAPS provides professional and non-judgmental help with your personal growth and psychological wellness. CAPS specializes in mental health services which can help you express thoughts and feelings, gain perspective, alleviate emotional symptoms, improving coping skills, and make healthy changes in your life.Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) are offered at the Student Health Center at no cost to currently enrolled students.
http://www.calstatela.edu/univ/hlth_ctr/counseling.php
2. TRIO is a set of federally-funded college opportunity programs that motivate and support students from disadvantaged backgrounds in their pursuit of a college degree. Over 850,000 low-income, first-generation students and students with disabilities - from sixth grade through college graduation - are served by more than 2,800 programs nationally. TRIO programs provide academic tutoring, personal counseling, mentoring, financial guidance, and other supports necessary for educational access and retention. TRIO programs provide direct support services for students, and relevant training for directors and staff.As mandated by Congress, two-thirds of the students served must come from families with incomes at 150% or less of the federal poverty level and in which neither parent graduated from college. More than 2,954 TRIO projects currently serve more than 840,000 low-income Americans. Many programs serve students in grades six through 12. Thirty-seven percent of TRIO students are White, 35% are African-American, 19% are Hispanic, 4% are Native American, 4% are Asian-American, and 1% are listed as "Other," including multiracial students. More than 7,000 students with disabilities and approximately 6,000 U.S. veterans are currently enrolled in the TRIO Programs as well. More than 1,000 colleges, universities, community colleges, and agencies now offer TRIO Programs in America, the Caribbean, and the Pacific Islands. TRIO funds are distributed to institutions through competitive grants.
http://www.calstatela.edu/univ/stuaffrs/ubp/upbound_trio.php
3. The Cross Cultural Centers at California State University, Los Angeles encourages student learning as well as fosters an inclusive campus environment that challenges racism, sexism, heterosexism, and other forms of oppression. With a commitment to increasing cross-cultural awareness, we offer a wide variety of programs and services that explore both the shared and unique experiences, histories, and heritages of our diverse community. The Cross Cultural Centers Include: Asian Pacific Islander Student Resource Center, Chicana/o Latina/o Student Resource Center, Pan African Student Resource Center, Gender & Sexuality Resource Center.
4. The Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) at Cal State LA provides services, advising, and programs to first generation, foster youth and lower income students at Cal State LA.Since our inception in 1969, EOP has been committed to helping disadvantaged students to attend the University. The Cal State L.A. EOP has eleven counselors and over 30 staff members dedicated to provide EOP students the services and the support they need to successfully complete their college education.The collective experiences of our staff and other members of the EOP family are ready to help students meet the challenges of attending a university.
5. The Dreamers Resource Center provides support and resources to undocumented students at Cal State LA. Our mission is to serve all undocumented students at Cal State L.A. and the community with information and resources to promote college admissions, persistence, graduation, graduate school, and professional careers. We provide student support services that create a welcoming and supportive environment, enhance the university experience, build leadership skills, and promote civic and community engagement.
6. The Veteran's Resource Center provides programs and resources to student Veteran's and dependents. ULA is committed to ensuring that all qualified veterans and their dependents have equal access to an affordable, quality university education and experience. To support this mission, CSULA offers the dedicated services and support of the Veterans Resource Center.
We are here to help veteran and active duty students navigate the certification and application processes, make a seamless transition to university life, support their success on campus, and prepare them to reach their career and life goals.
7. The Office for Students with Disabilities provides services and programs intended to support the academic and co-curricular success of Cal State LA students with Disabilities. Consistent with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, it is the policy of California State University, Los Angeles, that no otherwise qualified person with a disability shall be subjected to discrimination because of that disability under any program or activity conducted or sponsored by the University. As a result the Office for students with disabilities provides testing accommodations, counseling, co-curricular support, media lab support, tutoring, and alternative media resources.

For faculty:

The Office of the Vice President of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion has structured an Office of Equity Coordinators who assist in the “onboarding” of faculty from underrepresentative groups. There will be an Equity Coordinator in each College and reporting to the Vice President’s Office. They assist the new faculty hired to understand the process for tenure in their College and also to develop a sense of identity and belonging by linking them to affinity groups on the campus.


Does the institution have training and development programs, teaching fellowships and/or other programs that specifically aim to support and prepare students from underrepresented groups for careers as faculty members?:
No

A brief description of the institution’s programs to support and prepare students from underrepresented groups for careers as faculty members:
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Does the institution produce a publicly accessible inventory of gender-neutral bathrooms on campus?:
Yes

Does the institution offer housing options to accommodate the special needs of transgender and transitioning students?:
Yes

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
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The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.