Hamilton has joined the Liberal Arts Colleges Racial Equity Leadership Alliance this week as one of 51 inaugural member institutions. The alliance was launched by the University of Southern California Race and Equity Center on Nov. 9 and will afford faculty and staff of all member institutions with opportunities for learning and growth on issues of racial equity. Other local member institutions include Colgate University, Hobart and William Smith Colleges, and Utica College. Other NESCAC members include Amherst, Bowdoin, Colby, Connecticut, and Williams Colleges.
Beginning in January 2021, the Center will host a dozen eConvenings, each on a particular aspect of racial equity. These learning sessions, each on a different topic, will be delivered by highly-respected leaders of national higher education associations, tenured professors who study race relations, chief diversity officers and other experienced administrators, and specialists from the Center.
The Center is developing an online repository of resources and tools. The portal will launch in late-spring 2021.
The Center is also developing climate surveys for Alliance member colleges: one for staff at all levels and another for faculty (including full-time, adjunct, and part-time instructors). These surveys will focus on topics like employees’ perceptions of equitable opportunities for promotion and advancement; mattering and sense of belonging; how different groups of employees differently experience the workplace environment; employees’ encounters with racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, and other –isms at work; employee satisfaction with the College’s responses to reports of abuse, unfair treatment, and climate problems; and appraisals of the institution’s commitment to equity. A third survey is being developed for students.
Presidents of Alliance member colleges will meet quarterly to share strategies, seek advice, and identify ways to leverage the Alliance for collective impact on racial equity in higher education.