Diversity & Inclusion

A world without stereotypes or limits

Recent national events remind us that complacency about the insidious effects of historic and pervasive inequities and structural racism on our society is no longer an option. As one of the leading schools of nursing in the nation, we must seek to understand our role in advancing diversity in nursing and in leading the transformation of the academic and clinical paradigm that provides quality and equitable healthcare for all of society.

To begin our work together, faculty and staff commit to building and sustaining a culture that is welcoming, inclusive, and equitable for all students, faculty, and staff—especially those from under-represented populations. We will do this by:

  • Creating a safe and supportive learning environment that upholds our academic excellence and compels our students, faculty, and staff to recognize and interact with one another as whole persons and not simply as one-dimensional and often stereotypical aspects of our being.
  • Examining the personal perspectives of our own biases and socializations and be open to adjusting these perspectives, beliefs, and behaviors.
  • Actively listening to one another in order to develop true empathy. We will recognize and honor the differences between beliefs, practices, and cultural norms and encourage all to accept and respect each person’s uniqueness.
  • Understanding that this may, at times, lead to difficult conversations, but dialogues we will have in the safety of a caring and supportive school and university.
  • Taking action every day—as an institution and as individuals—in advancing our diversity strategic plan that celebrates change and honors tradition until our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion becomes an integral part of our everyday lives and not merely a set of initiatives. We will live what we say as a means to fully achieve our core values of respect, responsibility, trust and dialogue.

Building a long-term diverse and inclusive culture will take time, perseverance, and resolve; but we also realize that building this culture is not an option. It is a necessity that will open a world of endless possibilities for our students, as well as our graduates, faculty, and staff. We all benefit by having an open lens, inclusive nature, and a high level of cultural humility.

Specifically, delivering on our diversity strategic plan will enable us to:

  • Attract, admit, and support a racial and culturally diverse student population;
  • Recruit and retain the best and brightest as members of a faculty and staff that is representative of our racial and culturally diverse student population;
  • Educate the next generation of nurses to provide high quality nursing care to an increasingly diverse society;
  • Conduct leading edge research utilizing the latest findings in evidence-based practice to identify and address inequities that lead to disparities and to understand how interventions affect all populations; and
  • Influence and create healthcare policies that will reduce inequity at the local, state, and national levels.

I have so many ideas to complete in the research area, so when people ask me why I became a nurse, I still say ‘to change the world.’

Elham Algashgari, PhD student

Action steps

In pursuit of these outlined objectives, IU School of Nursing will take the following action steps, reporting on our success and learning from our setbacks. This is a dynamic document that will grow and develop over time.

Short-term Diversity Strategies

Core Initiatives

  • Appoint and implement a core Diversity Advisory Council to recommend diversity strategy.
  • Create a framework for diversity efforts.
  • Partner with the National Black Nurses Association (NBNA) to highlight IU School of Nursing’s history of involvement in originating the organization.
  • Choose diversity metrics and select standard data elements for initial diversity measures.
  • Commit to the public posting of data reporting on the progress of IU School of Nursing’s efforts to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion.
  • Brainstorm naming opportunities at Indiana University for our diversity champions.

Faculty & Staff Initiatives

  • Complete strategic plan training and initiate development of our diversity strategic plan over the course of one year, utilizing the framework and template that have been selected.
  • Evaluate IU School of Nursing’s initiatives to hire diverse faculty.
  • Create diversity goals for the dean of IU School of Nursing and the executive team to be incorporated into evaluations.
  • Review search and screen practices for all faculty and staff.
  • Initiate discussion of diversity strategic planning goals with strategic plan leads.
  • Explore the opportunities with the NBNA to introduce the Davis-Sams Distinguished Visiting Professorship nationally in a virtual format.

Student Initiatives

  • Post two Dean’s Diversity Scholars supported by the school.
  • Create student subcommittee of Diversity Advisory Council.
  • Review student admissions, progression, and graduation data through a lens of equity and create action plans if disparities exist in student success.
  • Conduct engaging student activity at the campus/core level to engage students in policymaking in order to better understand their diverse cultures and how it affects their learning (for example, including student representatives on nursing committees, where appropriate).