Dear Illinois Tech Students,
Approximately two years ago, the Illinois Tech administration partnered with The Nova Collective to help further the Illinois Tech community’s growth with diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives. Through a series of surveys to faculty, staff, and students, we learned that the need to improve the sense of belonging and strengthen the culture of inclusion at Illinois Tech is a priority and must be adopted by all of us.
Our first priority within our DEI efforts is to ensure that all faculty, staff, and students have access to DEI training resources. I am excited to share that there are 10 e-learning modules that I encourage you all to complete. Each module will take between 10–12 minutes to complete. You can access these modules via Blackboard under the “Organizations” tab.
Our second priority is to require this training for our entire community. Currently, faculty and staff are required to complete all 10 e-learning modules by the end of this semester. University leadership at all levels will be required to complete all 10 modules, as well as three additional live, deep-dive sessions.
As students, you are also expected to complete the training modules. However, the required due date for student completion will not be enforced until next semester. We encourage you to review the modules now, and we expect you to have them all completed by the middle of the fall 2023 semester.
Here is a listing of the module topics:
What is Diversity? What is Inclusion?
A foundational topic that “myth-busts” misconceptions and uncovers what diversity and inclusion can mean for individuals within your organization.
The Impact of Diversity and Inclusion
To build champions of DEI, everyone needs to understand its impact. This topic provides a framework for how to discover and define how anyone can have an impact on inclusion and belonging within your organization and to engage with the goals that you’re collectively working toward.
Race and Ethnicity
The ability to navigate multicultural relationships at work is a vital skill. This topic builds competency around how race and ethnicity show up in the workplace. This will also help build skills in recognizing and mitigating bias and microaggressions.
The generational landscape of the office is quickly transforming. This module dives into the strengths of different generations, and leads to discoveries on how to harness the power of the total workforce.
This topic will help your workforce develop awareness around gender dynamics and will expand beyond the gender binary to topics such as partner leave, remote work flexibility, evaluating office dress code norms, evaluating facilities accommodations for parents, providing equal airtime to people of all gender identities in meetings, and awareness of assumptions around task delegation.
Understanding the spectrum of cognitive, physical, sensory, developmental, and mental health abilities is a crucial step toward inclusivity. Educate your employees on how different abilities might show up in the workplace, and how to understand and challenge ableist norms.
This topic sets up a discussion for employees to unpack the concepts underneath bias. This topic also helps learners process the idea of unconscious bias so that they can move past acknowledging bias and into real behavioral change.
This module provides a baseline for understanding the LGBTQIA+ experience and provides tools to challenge assumptions around hetero-normative standards and behaviors at work.
Provide your employees with an awareness of what microaggressions are, including why and how they impact both sides and individuals. This module will help introduce your workforce to different types of microaggressions and guide them through the behaviors and consequences of how they show up at work.
Global Cultural Awareness
Global cultural awareness is an understanding of practices and values of other cultures that enables employees to work more effectively on global teams and helps provide tools for your teams so that they can practice global cultural competence in all areas of your business.
We look forward to furthering our learning commitment toward diversity, equity, and inclusion with you. Thank you for your participation!
Please direct any questions about the modules and/or training requirements to the Dean of Students Office of the Vice Provost of Student Affairs at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Vice Provost for Student Affairs and Dean of Students
President, Student Government Association (SGA)