Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 50.92
Liaison Gretchen Vanicor
Submission Date June 22, 2021

STARS v2.2

University of Louisiana at Lafayette
PA-7: Support for Underrepresented Groups

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.92 / 3.00 Taniecea Mallery
Executive Director of Strategic Initiatives & Chief Diversity Officer
Office for Campus Diversity
"---" 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:

The nondiscrimination policy is publicly posted on the Human Resources website. It is also included in employee and student handbooks and job postings, as appropriate. The full Non-Discrimination Policy can be found here: https://policies.louisiana.edu/non-discrimination-policy.

The Policy statement summary is as follows:
Pursuant to this Policy, the University of Louisiana at Lafayette (“University”) is committed to creating and maintaining a work environment in which dignity, decency, and respect are the hallmarks of its culture. The environment of the University should embody a sense of mutual trust and be free of Intimidating, oppressive, and exploitative behavior.
The University shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age (forty (40) years old or older), religion, sex (including pregnancy, gender identity, and transgender status), sexual orientation, disability, genetic information, veteran or military status, or retirement status in admission to, access to, treatment in, or employment in its programs and activities as required by Title VI and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, the Equal Pay Act of 1963, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Executive Order 11246, Section 503 and 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Section 402 of the Vietnam Era Veterans Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974, the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008, and the 1990 Americans With Disabilities Act, and amendments thereto.
Employees and students are entitled to work and learn in a safe and stimulating atmosphere. This is essential to the mission of the University. For that reason, the University will not tolerate Discrimination, Discriminatory Harassment, or Retaliation. Through enforcement of this Policy and by education, the University community will seek to prevent, correct, and discipline behavior that violates this Policy.

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:

The University of Louisiana at Lafayette has an established Non-Discrimination Policy and procedures for reporting and responding to violations of the Non-Discrimination Policy. These procedures provide protocols for reporting, investigating, and responding to allegations of discrimination or discriminatory harassment.

When a report of discrimination or discriminatory harassment is submitted to the Office of Human Resources, an initial assessment is conducted. This will usually be a preliminary meeting between the Complainant and the Director, HR Compliance and EEO Programs or their designee to gather facts that will enable the Director to determine and provide supportive measures to the involved parties.
Additionally, this meeting will allow the director to:
• Assess the nature and circumstances of the Complaint;
• Address any immediate concerns about the physical safety and emotional well-being of the individuals involved and the university community.
• Notify the complainant of the option to notify law enforcement; If the conduct is criminal in nature,
• Provide the complainant with information regarding:
o On and off campus resources, including the availability of medical treatment to address any physical and mental health concerns, including counseling and support, and to preserve evidence, whether or not the complainant chooses to make an official report or participate in the institutional disciplinary or criminal process;
o The available range of supportive measures; and
o Procedural options, including voluntary resolution, investigation, and appeal.
• Discuss the complainant’s expressed preference for manner of resolution and any barriers to proceeding;
• Discuss the option of pursuing their complaint through the formal process or informal process or both;
• Explain the University’s policy prohibiting retaliation; and
• Assess potential pattern evidence or other similar conduct.
• Verify and ensure employee respondents have completed all required annual non-discrimination training and prescribe remedial training during or at the conclusion of a review.
The university may initiate additional supportive measures after the initial assessment, to ensure the continued safety of the complainant and its community.

Students who experience discrimination can receive additional support by reporting to the Dean of Students. The Students of Concern Team can then provide additional support to students. The SOCT is a campus resource dedicated to assisting students who may be in distress or experiencing challenging or difficult life circumstances. The primary focus of the team is to take a proactive approach in identifying students who are struggling and provide early intervention, resources, and referrals, both on campus and in the community.

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:

Students: Yes. The University of Louisiana at Lafayette leads numerous efforts to recruit historically underrepresented and first-generation students. This includes community outreach through the GEAR-UP program, a national strategic partnership supported by a grant from the U.S. Department of Education. While UL Lafayette does not currently have admissions officers with a specific diversity focus, all admissions officers employ targeted strategies to recruit underrepresented and first-generation students. UL Lafayette also cultivates informal partnerships with local minority-serving high schools to offer specialized tours and campus visits for prospective students. Our community college bridge program (the Ragin' Cajun Bridge Program), offers students at South Louisiana Community College and LSU Eunice the opportunity to gain access to UL Lafayette resources, including a student ID card, career services, residential life, tutoring support, library access, and gym access. The cross-enrollment program offers students the opportunity to jointly enroll at SLCC or LSU-E and UL Lafayette while retaining the tuition of their home institution and obtaining credits that apply to full-time enrollment. Since 1972, UL Lafayette has also provided comprehensive academic support through the TRiO programs, a group of federally funded programs that help first-generation and low-income students. This includes programs such as Upward Bound that specialize in targeted recruitment of low income and first-generation students. UL Lafayette also offers scholarships awarded by the Black Faculty and Staff Association and the Christiana Smith African American Alumni Chapter as strategies for recruitment. UL Lafayette also implements a holistic admissions process in which undergraduate applicants may be admitted by exception if they do not meet the standard acceptance criteria. An admission by exception is a holistic review process that considers extracurricular activities and community involvement as a measure of a student's potential for success. Recruiters also participate in underrepresented student conferences, including the national GEAR-UP conference, GEAR-UP regional workshops and the national TRiO conference.

The Pathways initiative is currently underdevelopment to expand the current intensive English preparatory courses to assist international students to build the skills, knowledge and qualifications necessary to enter a degree program. This program offers high quality English as a Second Language courses training non-native English speakers. In addition the University assists students in applications for the J Visa (Exchange Visitor Visa) program designed to promote the interchange of persons, knowledge, and skills.

Faculty - The University of Louisiana at Lafayette participates annually in the recruitment fair at the Institute on Teaching and Mentoring, the largest gathering of Ph.D. students from underrepresented groups in the country.

Staff - The University of Louisiana at Lafayette encourages search committees to connect candidates for non-academic staff positions with the Office for Campus Diversity and the Black Faculty and Staff Association during the interview process, in order to provide them with targeted resources and support.

The University assists faculty and researchers in preparing applications for the H-1B status. The status is for people who work in a specialty occupation that requires advanced degrees, and includes employees who may be faculty, staff, research associates, or postdoctoral fellows.

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:

Students - 1) The Louisiana Educate program, launched in Fall 2018, is a cohort-based success and retention initiative geared toward underrepresented, low-income students. Supported by external funding sources, the Louisiana Educate program is designed to provide living and learning communities, culturally relevant advising, and comprehensive academic support for a cohort of minority students from low-income backgrounds. A unique aspect of the program is the partnership with the students' high school counselors in an effort to share relevant data to guide the continued academic success of the students through their college experience. In future years, there are plans to incorporate a summer bridge program to support students’ transition into college life. 2) Student Support Services provides a host of services to support underrepresented students, including tutoring, mentoring, financial aid assistance, career counseling, etc.

International Students have the ability to engage the International Student Ambassador program. Ambassadors assist in welcoming new international students to campus. In addition the Office of International Affairs supports students through advising, enrollment verification, passports, maintaining and changing status, and training in working on or off-campus.

Faculty and Staff - Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) such as the Black Faculty and Staff Association (BFSA) provide mentoring, counseling and peer support for academic staff from underrepresented groups on campus. This is an officially recognized university organization established to serve the need of underrepresented faculty, staff, and students. THE BFSA promotes diversity, equity, and fair representation through programming and collaborating with other groups and organizations on campus.Additionally, the James Jackson Community of Scholars provides a network of support for graduate students, faculty and staff from underrepresented groups. The James Jackson Community of Scholars provides programming to build community and support the success of underrepresented scholars on 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?:

A brief description of the institution’s programs to support and prepare students from underrepresented groups for careers as faculty members:

The Louis Stokes-Louisiana Alliance for Minority Participation (LS-LAMP) is an undergraduate support organization designed to increase the number of students from underrepresented groups pursuing higher education in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) fields. The LS-LAMP program provides financial and research support to students throughout their undergraduate years, leading them to graduate school and on to doctoral degrees in STEM fields. 2) The McNair Scholars Program provides support for undergraduate students, encouraging them to pursue graduate studies. In particular, the McNair Scholars Program supports students in defining goals, engaging in research, and developing the skills and relationships critical for success at the doctoral level. The McNair Scholars Program also prepares students for applying to graduate programs and helps them to secure funding to finance their graduate education.

The Graduate School awards Board of Regents/SREB Graduate Fellowships funded jointly by UL Lafayette and the Louisiana Board of Regents as an initiative to promote student and faculty diversity. These competitive fellowships are open to underrepresented minority doctoral students pursuing a Ph.D. degree and planning for a career in academia.

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:

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.