Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 66.39
Liaison Phil Valko
Submission Date March 4, 2022

STARS v2.2

Washington University in St. Louis
PA-6: Assessing Diversity and Equity

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.00 / 1.00 Trish Gomez
Associate Director, Operations
Academy for Diversity & Inclusion
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Has the institution engaged in a structured assessment process during the previous three years to improve diversity, equity and inclusion on campus?:

A brief description of the assessment process and the framework, scorecard(s) and/or tool(s) used:

An Employee Satisfaction Survey was planned for late 2021, but was delayed due to COVID constraints. The planned survey will include questions related to campus climate and assess attitudes, perceptions and behaviors of employees.

The survey will build upon ongoing efforts started in 2015 with the appointment of The Commission on Diversity and Inclusion worked from August 2015 through October 2015. The Commission (2015-2017) was composed of 27 members of the Washington University community, including faculty members, staff, and students—undergraduate, graduate, and professional students from all campuses. To tackle the action items, 12 working groups were appointed and utilized the perspectives, experiences, and expertise of more than 230 faculty members, staff, and students. Input was solicited from the university’s LGBT Advisory Committee as well. The Commission's recommendations included: an institutional scorecard, a chief diversity officer, a centralized “Academy” to house training and other inclusion initiatives, sex and gender equity, tenure standards, Urban Fellows, publicity/communications strategy, and support for the university’s Supplier Diversity Initiative.

Since then, some of the highest impact recommendations have been initiated and/or completed, including to “create an Academy for Diversity and Inclusion for staff and faculty members to become the university’s primary forum for changing climate and culture.” The Academy hired its leadership and key staff in 2018 and took about a year to do deep listening and learning to determine the right foundation for starting their work. The effort was both relationally and people-driven, but also informed by a lot of data and research (detailed here: https://wustl.app.box.com/s/zdhwbc3gbdevsmtqswdwv2fma8lkc011, p31). In Sept 2019, the Academy created their “orientation document” which shared out what they found and set the direction for their work.

The Academy also launched the Equity and Inclusion Council in Aug 2020 to carry on the work of the 2015-2017 Commission, which is made up of people from across the university but staffed by the Academy for DEI. The Council is also funded with $500,000 to be used to seed, leverage or expand activities with systemic impact.

In addition, there is an Accountability and Measurement Working Group that was charged with determining the metrics to measure and evaluate progress.

In 2021, the university embarked on its institution-wide strategic planning process, which charged 9 working groups with preparing recommendations that aligned with 5 guiding principles, one of which was Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Access. Committees included WashU staff, faculty, and students and in each committee, there was an assessment of relevant factors and a significant community input. The recommendations were submitted at the end of 2021 and a final plan will be released in the coming months. https://strategicplan.wustl.edu/vision/


Does the assessment process address campus climate by engaging stakeholders to assess the attitudes, perceptions and behaviors of employees and students, including the experiences of underrepresented groups?:

Does the assessment process address student outcomes related to diversity, equity and success?:

Does the assessment process address employee outcomes related to diversity and equity?:

A brief description of the most recent assessment findings and how the results are used in shaping policy, programs, and initiatives:

Commission report: https://diversity.wustl.edu/framework/commission-diversity-inclusion/

This report included over 200 recommendations, outlining hundreds of concrete ways for the university to demonstrate an institutional commitment to equity and inclusion. The report has led to some institutional changes. But since the Commission made its report and completed its charge, no representative, university-wide body has facilitated application and implementation of the Commission’s research and recommendations, or sustained the institution-level communication opportunity for university stakeholders working on equity and inclusion like the one Commission process provided.

Leading to the formation of the WU Equity and Inclusion Council: https://equityinclusion.wustl.edu/about-the-council/
If systemic, structural change is to happen, the Council must leverage in its membership both people whose roles enable them to influence the systems and structures of the university, and people whose roles give them enough distance and perspective to see clearly where systemic and structural change is needed. The Council’s challenge is to take the work of the Commission, qualitative and quantitative data about institution-level outcomes for the various groups in our university community, and the demands of students across the decades, to transform the university for the long term. This will mean changes in policy and practice, adopted in partnership with the chancellor, provost, deans, vice chancellors and Board of Trustees.

Additional racial equity commitments: https://diversity.wustl.edu/framework/2020-commitments-to-racial-equity/
Academy Orientation Document (summarizes findings and the baseline) https://wustl.app.box.com/s/zdhwbc3gbdevsmtqswdwv2fma8lkc011

Data: https://diversity.wustl.edu/framework/
Policies: https://diversity.wustl.edu/framework/policies/
Initiatives: https://diversity.wustl.edu/initiatives/
Training: https://diversity.wustl.edu/training/

Are the results of the most recent structured diversity and equity assessment shared with the campus community?:

A brief description of how the assessment results are shared with the campus community:

Via Diversity and Inclusion website and Day of Discovery & Dialogue (a multi-day event with guest speakers, networking, facilitated discussion and workshops).

Are the results (or a summary of the results) of the most recent structured diversity and equity assessment publicly posted?:

The diversity and equity assessment report or summary (upload):
Website URL where the diversity and equity assessment report or summary is publicly posted:
Website URL where information about the institution’s diversity and equity assessment efforts 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 or simply email your inquiry to stars@aashe.org.