The Equity, Diversity and Excellence Initiative (EDEI) is the outcome of a continued collaboration between Georgia Tech’s ADVANCE Program, Institute Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, faculty, and administrators.
EDEI focuses on four areas—mentoring, transparency, a culture of equity, and accountability—to help foster a diverse pool of talent, create an inclusive and equitable work climate, and support the career growth of existing women and minority faculty at all levels.
Accordingly, EDEI emphasizes institutional support through Leadership Training and Mentoring, Transparency, Promoting a Culture of Equity, and Data Collection and Analysis to aid in assessment and policy input.
Leadership Training and Mentoring
- Providing support for junior faculty to have productive, successful careers
Each ADVANCE Program professor will continue working with deans and chairs in their colleges to find an appropriate level of support for all junior faculty.
- Organizing ADVANCE workshops and town halls
ADVANCE Program professors have hosted successful workshops and town halls on topics relevant to the Georgia Tech community. We will continue to organize these events yearly.
- Promoting more women to positions of distinction and visibility
Some recommended policies include: prioritizing diversity in senior hires and in appointments to leadership and distinguished positions; exploring targeted fundraising; and creating leadership training programs.
- Junior faculty should all have a formal or informal support structure they can articulate
- An improved proportion of vacant endowed/term professorships/chairs to go to distinguished women faculty
- Periodic reviews to institutionalize/emphasize collaborative senior faculty growth paths
- Institutionalize leadership skills training for tenured women faculty
- More women faculty leaders at Georgia Tech
- Requiring all colleges to have transparent, clear process guidelines for Reappointment, Promotion, and/or Tenure (RPT)
As recommended by Georgia Tech’s Promotion and Tenure ADVANCE Committee (PTAC), each college should have easily accessible guidelines for the RPT process. ADVANCE professors work closely with their respective deans’ offices to make information readily available for all faculty (e.g., timelines, committee formation, letter-writer selection, etc.). When appropriate, we also will work to supply samples of materials from successful cases and participate in forums to help communicate information about processes.
- Working with school chairs and deans toward increased transparency
ADVANCE professors will continue working with the deans and school chairs to provide open information about school operations, including committee assignments, buyout policies, and leave policies (e.g., medical, faculty development leave, active service / modified duties).
- All faculty are aware of the RPT procedures in their units
- Guidelines within schools or colleges regarding professional/medical leaves articulated to faculty; information about committee assignments and rules made available
Promoting a Culture of Equity
- Best Practices In Hiring ADVANCE has been an active presence on a task force appointed by Provost Steve McLaughlin to develop a toolkit of best practices to guide units through faculty and administrative hiring. The toolkit shares ideas supported by research for ensuring diversity in hiring. The toolkit should be available by the summer of 2023.
- Statement of our commitment to diversity and equity
We have designed an equity statement to be presented by chairs and deans at the first faculty meeting of each year; by RPT and Hiring Committee Chairs to their committees each season; at annual staff and student meetings; and included in the ethics training module defining Institute values.
- Annual Dean’s Report on Equity and Diversity
In order to promote accountability in the colleges, we provide an annual Dean’s Report on Equity and Diversity addressing measures taken in each of the schools and across the college to address issues of diversity and fairness. Reports on policies and data are to be obtained annually by the vice president of Institute Diversity and the provost from each dean.
- Reports from each Hiring and RPT Committee Chair
In order to highlight the Institute’s commitment to diversity and equity on these critical committees, we ask each College to fill our hiring and RPT information in a short template each cycle. These reports will be shared in the Annual Dean’s Report, and will also be submitted to Institute Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. ADVANCE Program professors will work with Institute Diversity to provide guidance, including a short checklist of questions to address in the reports and a contact person for suggested best practices. We continue to work with Institute Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion to provide centralized resources to provide guidance to committee members, chairs, and deans in this assessment process. We continue to develop a repository of shared resources to facilitate these committees.
- Diversity and equity awareness training
The ADVANCE Program is a central component of EDEI, working closely with Institute Diversity to identify, develop, and evaluate educational programming efforts. ADVANCE continues to promote the bias awareness training offered within Institute Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion to encourage full faculty participation.
- Institutionalize a norm of equity
- Obtain accountability through reporting mechanisms
- Maintain a website with training tools, a faculty liaison, and an easily accessible repository of effective practices on committees and in schools
- Institutionalized equity best practices for all Hiring and RPT Committee members, school chairs, and deans
Data Collection and Analysis
- Data collection and tracking
Provide advisement to help identify metrics and expanded data categories to track faculty hiring, retention, advancement, and satisfaction. Conduct surveys for faculty leaving Georgia Tech and potential hires who have turned down offers.
- Data driven recommendations
Based on the collected data, ADVANCE Program professors will work with and advise the provost, deans, and other members of the administration to identify issues, problems, and solutions.
- Maintain reliable statistics about faculty across units according to gender, race, rank, etc. over time
- Increased representation by women at all ranks
- Salary/space/policy adjustments, as appropriate
- Annual meetings with the ADVANCE Program, Institute Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and the Office of the Provost to discuss strategies for improving the climate and institute best practices regarding equity and diversity
For more information about these efforts, contact an ADVANCE professor or Diley Hernandez, Ph.D., associate vice president of Institute Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, to hear best practices and consult with faculty on these and other issues related to diversity and equity.