Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 56.79
Liaison Ryan Chabot
Submission Date April 23, 2024

STARS v2.2

University of Central Florida
PA-7: Support for Underrepresented Groups

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.92 / 3.00 Ryan Chabot
Sustainability Coordinator
Arboretum and Sustainability Initiatives
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

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

The non-discrimination statement, including the website URL where the policy is publicly accessible:
An up to date version of the university’s Non-discrimination Policy is located at https://policies.ucf.edu/

The University of Central Florida is committed to maintaining a safe and non- discriminatory learning, living and working environment for all students, employees, registered student organizations, DSOs, and third-parties. Academic and professional excellence can exist only when each member of our community is assured an atmosphere of safety and mutual respect. All members of the university community are responsible for the maintenance of an environment in which people are free to learn and work without fear of discrimination, discriminatory harassment, or interpersonal violence. Discrimination diminishes individual dignity and impedes equal employment and educational opportunities.
The university does not unlawfully discriminate in any of its education or employment programs and activities on the basis of an individual’s race, color, ethnicity, national origin, religion, or non-religion, age, genetic information, sex (including pregnancy and parental status), gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, marital status, physical or mental disability (including learning disabilities, intellectual disabilities, and past or present history of mental illness), political affiliations, veteran’s status (as protected under the Vietnam Era Veterans’ Readjustment Assistant Act), or membership in any other protected classes as set forth in state or federal law. To that end, this Policy Against Discrimination, Harassment and Related Interpersonal Violence (the “Policy”) prohibits specific forms of behavior that violate state and federal laws, including but not limited to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (“Title VII”), Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (“Title IX”), the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 (“VAWA”), Florida’s Civil Rights Act (Sections 760.10 and 110.1221) and related state and federal anti-discrimination laws. Such behavior may also require the university to fulfill certain reporting obligations under the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act (the “Clery Act”), as amended by VAWA, and Florida state law regarding reporting suspected child abuse and neglect.
The university prohibits discrimination, as well as discriminatory harassment, sexual assault, sexual exploitation, relationship violence, stalking, sexual or gender-based harassment, complicity in the commission of any act prohibited by this Policy, retaliation against a person for reporting, in good faith, any of these forms of conduct or participating in or being a party to any investigation or proceeding under this Policy (collectively, “Prohibited Conduct”). Religious discrimination includes failing to reasonably accommodate an employee’s or student’s religious practices where the accommodation does not impose an undue hardship. Disability discrimination includes not making reasonable accommodations to the known physical or mental limitations of an otherwise qualified individual with a disability where the accommodations do not impose an undue hardship. These forms of Prohibited Conduct are unlawful and undermine the mission and values of our academic community. In addition, inappropriate amorous relationships with employees in positions of authority can undermine the university’s mission when those in positions of authority abuse or appear to abuse their authority.
The university adopts this Policy with a commitment to: (1) eliminating, preventing, and addressing the effects of Prohibited Conduct; (2) fostering a safe and respectful university community; (3) cultivating a climate where all individuals are well-informed and supported in reporting Prohibited Conduct; (4) providing a fair and impartial process for all parties in the investigation and resolution of such reports; and (5) identifying the standards by which violations of this Policy will be evaluated and disciplinary action may be imposed. In addition, the university conducts ongoing prevention, awareness, and training programs for employees and students to facilitate the goals of this Policy.
A student, employee, or registered student organization determined by the university to have committed an act of Prohibited Conduct is subject to disciplinary action, up to and including permanent separation from the university. Third-parties or DSOs who commit acts of Prohibited Conduct may have their relationships with the university terminated and/or their privileges of being on university premises withdrawn.
It is the responsibility of every member of the university community to foster an environment free of Prohibited Conduct. All members of the university community are encouraged to take reasonable and prudent actions to prevent or stop an act of Prohibited Conduct. The university will support and assist community members who take such actions. Also, many university employees must report Prohibited Conduct to the university (see Section IX below).
2-004.1 Prohibition of Discrimination, Harassment and Related Interpersonal Violence 8
Retaliation against any individual who, in good faith, reports or participates in the reporting, investigation, or adjudication of and/or is a party to an investigation related to Prohibited Conduct is impermissible, unlawful and will not be tolerated by the university.
This Policy applies to all reports of Prohibited Conduct occurring on or after the effective date of this Policy. Where the date of the Prohibited Conduct precedes the effective date of this Policy, the definitions of misconduct in effect at the time of the alleged incident(s) will be applied. The procedures under this Policy, however, will be used to investigate and resolve all reports made on or after the effective date of this Policy, regardless of when the incident(s) occurred.

Does the institution have a discrimination response protocol or committee (sometimes called a bias response team)?:

A brief description of the institution’s discrimination response protocol or team:
UCF’s Office of Institutional Equity (OIE) mission is to ensure equal opportunity and protect the civil rights of all University community members through proactive outreach, education, and effective response and resolution. The OIE supports a living, learning, and work environment that is free from unlawful discrimination, harassment, and retaliation where all members of the UCF community feel welcomed and valued.

Incidents of discrimination or harassment should be reported to OIE. There are forms available such as the OIE Intake and Complaint Form and the Reporting Form Regarding Incidents of Sex Discrimination, Sexual Harassment, Sexual Misconduct or Interpersonal Violence. OIE is responsible for reviewing, and where applicable, objectively investigating complaints of unlawful discrimination and harassment based on a protected classification to determine if employee conduct violates the University's non-discrimination policies.

UCF’s IntegrityLine is another way to report suspected misconduct. IntegrityLine is a secure reporting system administered by an independent third party that provides complete confidentiality and anonymity in reporting, available 24/7.

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

Does the institution have programs specifically designed to recruit academic staff from underrepresented groups?:

Does the institution have programs designed specifically to recruit non-academic staff from underrepresented groups?:

A brief description of the institution’s programs to recruit students, academic staff, and/or non-academic staff from underrepresented groups:
UCF has many programs aimed at recruiting underrepresented groups, with 49.1% of UCF’s students identifying as a member of a traditionally underrepresented group. UCF aspires to be a destination of choice for the most talented people, a best place to learn and work, and a partner of choice in our community.

For the seventh time, UCF was named among the 2021 Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award recipients by Insight Into Diversity magazine, which recognizes U.S. colleges and universities that demonstrate an outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion. UCF is ranked as one of the top public universities for social mobility, graduate indebtedness, and graduation and retention by U.S. News & World Report. UCF has also earned the Seal of Excelencia, and has been recognized by the U.S. Department of Education as a Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) since 2019 for having more than one quarter of the student body identifying as Hispanic/Latinx.

The Office for HSI Initiatives provides a centralized vision and guidance for maximizing UCF’s HSI federal designation in a way that meaningfully serves students, faculty, staff, alumni, and community members from diverse backgrounds. The office works to strengthen institutional capacity through grant-funded and philanthropic activities, and helps faculty and staff identify HSI/MSI federal funding opportunities and develop competitive proposals.

UCF is also a member institution of the University Innovation Alliance, “the leading national coalition of public research universities committed to increasing the number and diversity of college graduates in the United States.”

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

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

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

A brief description of the institution’s programs designed specifically to support students, academic staff, and/or non-academic staff from underrepresented groups:
The LEGACY Leadership and Mentoring Program:
The LEGACY Leadership and Mentoring Program supports the retention and success of first-year Black/African American students at the University of Central Florida. LEGACY Scholars are assigned a faculty/staff member as their committed Mentor for their first academic year. Mentors are members of UCF’s Black Faculty and Staff Association (BFSA) and assist LEGACY Scholars with acquiring the knowledge and skills to be effective students.

CREAR (College Readiness, Achievement and Retention) Futuros:
CREAR Futuros, which means “To Create Futures” in Spanish, is a peer-mentor based initiative designed to improve student success at UCF. CREAR students are paired with knowledgeable and highly trained upper-class UCF peer-mentors that introduce them to campus resources, provide tips on stress and time management, and offer insight on how to make the most out of their time at UCF.

LGBTQ+ Services:
The mission of the UCF Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Questioning/Queer (LGBTQ+) Services is to connect our diverse student population to opportunities, resources, and each other to achieve the vision of a stronger, healthier, and more equitable world for LGBTQ+ people and their allies. LGBTQ+ strives to support the community by: Fostering greater opportunities for students to succeed at UCF; Organizing programs and experiences geared toward educating the UCF community; Creating a forum where LGBTQ+ history and culture is acknowledged and celebrated; Creating a space where resources can be created and explored in the future.
Lavender Council is a student advisory board that serves as a liaison between students, faculty, and staff and LGBTQ+ Services.

Black Faculty and Staff Association (BFSA):
The BFSA’s mission is to promote an environment which fosters cultural sensitivity and enrichment by providing quality programming, networking opportunities and guidance to UCF’s Black students, faculty and staff, and the greater UCF community.

Latino Faculty and Staff Association (LaFaSA):
The University of Central Florida’s Latino Faculty and Staff Association is an organization dedicated to raising awareness and advocating for the needs and goals of Latino faculty and staff at UCF. LaFaSA seeks to promote a family environment that embraces and respects the various identities within the Latino/a culture.

PRIDE Faculty and Staff Association (PFSA):
PFSA’s mission is to promote an environment which fosters cultural sensibility and enrichment by providing quality programming, networking opportunities, and guidance to UCF’s LGBTQ+ students, faculty, and staff on all UCF campuses.
The vision for PFSA lies in three areas: education, advocacy, and outreach.

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?:

A brief description of the institution’s programs to support and prepare students from underrepresented groups for careers as faculty members:
TRiO Center https://trio.sdes.ucf.edu/

The TRiO Center at UCF supports students who are first-generation in college, low-income, and/or have a documented disability during their educational journey. Its programs provide academic support services, opportunities, and resources to both high school and college students. From strengthening professional and personal skills to inspiring academic excellence, the center empowers students to achieve anything they set out to do. Development workshops, academic coaching, academic tutoring, peer mentoring and other services give students the tools needed to succeed in school and in life. The services offered cover a wide range of topics including standardized tests, graduate and professional preparation, academic success, career readiness, and personal development. Plus, there is no cost to participate since TRiO programs are funded by the U.S. Department of Education.

McNair Scholars Program https://mcnair.ucf.edu/program-details/

Part of the federal TRiO program, the McNair Scholars Program offers research opportunities and other activities to prepare low-income and first-generation undergraduate students for an advanced degree. Students will explore a range of information about planning for a master’s or doctoral degree, such as the application process, funding graduate school, summer research programs, and fellowships. Other resources include meeting with graduate school faculty and staff, as well as getting one-on-one help from advisors as students begin to transition from their undergraduate studies to a graduate program. This ensures strong graduate school candidates and future leaders who will contribute to the UCF community and the world around them.

Does the institution produce a publicly accessible inventory of gender-neutral bathrooms on campus?:

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

Website URL where information about the institution’s support for underrepresented groups is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
Data source(s) and notes about the submission:

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 or simply email your inquiry to stars@aashe.org.