Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 51.15
Liaison Joanne Wong
Submission Date May 31, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Mills College
PA-6: Support for Underrepresented Groups

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.33 / 3.00 Nicole Gaetjens
Sustainability Coordinator
Campus Facilities
"---" 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:

mills.edu/administration/administrative_offices/policies/nondiscrimination.php

Mills College does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, marital status, age, religious creed, national origin, ancestry, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, or disability (in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, 1973 Rehabilitation Act Section 504, and implementing regulations) in its admission policies, scholarship and loan programs, or in the educational programs or activities which it operates. Nor does Mills discriminate on the basis of sex in its graduate programs. Mills enforces against unlawful discrimination through its Campus Policy and Procedure on Discrimination, which is available by request from the Division of Student Life (DSL) at 510.430.2130.

Mills is an equal opportunity employer and seeks to comply with all applicable state and federal laws and local ordinances prohibiting employment discrimination. All aspects of employment are based on merit, qualifications, and job competence. Mills does not discriminate against anyone regarding employment practices, compensation, or promotional or educational opportunities on the basis of race, color, marital status, age, religious creed, national origin, ancestry, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, disability, veteran status, pregnancy, or medical conditions. It is Mills policy to provide reasonable job accommodations to employees with disabilities who can perform essential functions of jobs for which they are otherwise qualified. Inquiries regarding compliance with various employment laws and regulations should be directed to Legal Counsel, Mills College, 5000 MacArthur Boulevard, Oakland, CA 94613.


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):

Mills College is committed to creating and maintaining a community where all
individuals are treated with equality of opportunity, free from discrimination and
harassment. Mills College desires to promote healthy and respectful discourse and inquiry, and a living, learning, and working environment that is free of unlawful harassment, discrimination, exploitation or intimidation; welcoming and valuing the full richness of our diversity, while working towards social justice. Decisions and behavior that a member of the community believes may violate this commitment may be addressed by using this Grievance Policy. Mills College will take prompt and effective corrective action when it concludes that there has been unlawful discrimination or harassment, or where its officers decide that it is important to take action to prevent a future such instance.
Grievance
A grievance under this Policy is accusation within the College, of a non-academic nature
about a decision or behavior on the part of a student, faculty member, staff or other
employee, or other individual associated with Mills College that the Grievant perceives to create a harmful, living learning working environment, including, but not limited to, claims of discriminatory treatment or discriminatory impact, or bias-related incidents, in both cases where the Grievant believes that the decision or behavior resulted from perceived or actual hostility against the Grievant or a group because of race, color, sex, gender identity, gender presentation, disability, sexual orientation, age, ancestry, ethnicity, national origin, family status and/or spiritual/religious beliefs.

Bias-Related Incidents
These are incidents that are expressions of hostility against another individual (or group)
because of race, color, sex, gender identity, gender presentation, disability, sexual
orientation, age, ancestry, ethnicity, national origin, family status and/or spiritual/religious beliefs and/, or because the perpetrator perceives that the other person (or group) has one or more of these characteristics. It also envisions instances of protected (but hateful or intolerant) speech that may generate harm, and thus may warrant College intervention. Bias-related incidents need to be addressed because they harm individuals and/or groups, undermine civility and understanding in the Mills community, as well as impede the educational process.

As part of our strategic imperative on inclusiveness, Mills College formed a Bias Response Team comprised of faculty, students and staff. This team is chaired by Vice President for Student Life and Dean of Students. The team will discuss issues of bias that arise on campus. The formation of the BRT illustrates the College's commitment to diversity and trust that we will continue to work together with mutual respect and integrity.

Hate Crimes
A hate crime, as the College considers it, is a criminal act that is committed against the
person or property of another because of the other person's actual or perceived race, color, sex, gender identity, gender presentation, disability, sexual orientation, age, ancestry, ethnicity, national origin, family status and/or spiritual/religious beliefs.
Hate crimes also include any such crimes committed against the property of a public agency or private institution - including educational facilities and advocacy groups - because the property of the agency or institution is identified or associated with a person or group of an identifiable race, color, sex, gender identity, gender presentation, disability, sexual orientation, age, ancestry, ethnicity, national origin, family status and/or spiritual/religious beliefs.

Retaliation
This Policy also prohibits retaliation against a person who makes a grievance under this
Policy or who participates in any manner in this procedure or any government inquiry into a matter that would be proper to be a grievance under this Policy. Retaliation includes, but is not limited to, threats, intimidation, reprisals, and/or adverse actions related to employment or education.


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

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?:
No

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

Mills removed the admissions requirement for SAT/ACT test scores in order to increase access to underrepresented groups. A 2014 study, “Defining Promise: Optional Standardized Testing Policies in American College and University Admissions,” found students enrolling at test-optional colleges who chose not to submit SAT and ACT scores were more likely to be students of color, students with economic need, or the first in their families to attend college.

Mills College is engaged in two Federal TRIO programs: Upward Bound and Mills Educational Talent Search (METS). Upward Bound provides high school students from low-income families in which neither parent holds a bachelor’s degree with academic tutoring and opportunities that continue through college. METS connects low-income, first-generation students with academic advisors who offer personalized college planning and access to numerous resources for students.

Ninety percent of Mills students receive some portion of their aid directly from the College. Mills offers merit and need-based scholarships and provides additional support for first-generation students.

Mills College is part of the Oakland Promise College Pathway Partnership. Oakland Promise is a collaboration between Libby Schaaf, mayor of Oakland; Antwan Wilson, superintendent of the Oakland Unified School District; the East Bay College Fund; and local university leaders. Its goal is to ensure that every Oakland child graduates high school with the expectations, resources, and support to complete college and be successful in the career of their choice. Oakland Promise asks Mills to offer financial aid and mentoring support to help increase the percentage of Oakland high school students who graduate from college. Signatories to the agreement also pledge to collaborate on recruitment, college advising, and college visits, and to address issues related to placement testing.

Mills is also part of the Peralta-Mills Promise. The partnership establishes dual admissions for students who desire to pursue both an associate’s degree and baccalaureate degree with the Peralta Community Colleges and at Mills College. Students at Peralta receive targeted educational and mentoring services needed to transfer to Mills College and obtain a four-year bachelor’s degree. Peralta-Mills Promise students can begin earning credits toward a Mills College bachelor’s degree at the same time they are working on their community college associate degrees. Students transferring to Mills from one of the four Peralta colleges are eligible to participate in enhanced educational offerings such as transfer admission seminars, academic and career counseling, financial aid and scholarship application workshops, scholarship opportunities through the East Bay College Fund, debt management counseling, tutoring, and summer academic bridge programs that orient students to Mills. Additionally, Mills College academic and admissions staff will be on hand at Peralta colleges to provide information to prospective Mills transfer students. Peralta students interested in transferring to Mills through the Peralta-Mills Promise program will receive one-on-one sessions with an academic advisor who will develop a personalized graduation plan for each student.


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?:
No

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

SUMMER ACADEMIC WORKSHOP (SAW)

This four-week residential program, tailored for first-generation college students and students of color, provides selected students with a rigorous academic transition to college and a lasting support community. Over the four weeks, SAW students participate in approximately 68 hours of class time across four course modules (English, social justice, sociological inquiry, and mathematics), and three workshops (sociology, study skills, and writing). This is complemented by 48 hours of structured study time, interspersed with leadership development and team-building activities, introductions to key areas and resources on campus, weekly educational and social outings, athletic programs, and introductions to library and computing services available at Mills.
Workshops and Individual support is also provided during all 4 years for SAW students and other students who choose to utilize the program's services.

Being the First
The Being the First Program provides support and community-building opportunities for first-generation students throughout their college experience at Mills. The program focuses on connecting students with the resources they need to meet their academic, personal, and career goals. Being the First offers specialized study sessions with access to peer tutoring, weekly peer advising services, and an annual speaker series.

The Women of Color Resource Center (https://www.mills.edu/academics/undergraduate/eths/wcrc.php)
The Women of Color Resource Center (WCRC) was founded by Mills students, faculty, and alumnae of color. The center is located on the 3rd floor of Mills Hall and is coordinated by the Ethnic Studies Department. The WCRC provides a comfortable, supportive environment for women of color at Mills and is dedicated to creating coalitions and community among women of diverse ethnic origins. It is used as a meeting space for affinity organizations and the Womanist journal. The WCRC also houses two computers, and is used as an individual study space and a location for study groups.


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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