The UMD School of Public Policy is committed to fostering an inclusive environment where our diverse community members are respected and our unique experiences and perspectives are welcome and celebrated. We have developed a set of community expectations as a set of guidelines that we believe should inform how our community members at SPP will engage one another.
Nine Antiracist Actions
We identified the following nine actions specifically to signify the almost nine minutes that resulted in the horrific murder of George Floyd. These same nine minutes catapulted our nation into a long overdue racial reckoning and momentum building, in our streets and institutions across the nation.
|Action Item 1
Hold faculty accountable who compromise the safety and learning of students
|One of the primary goals is to develop a faculty code of conduct for the School. Those responsible for this action item have been working to research other schools'/universities' staff codes of conduct for best practices and reviewing suggestions made at the SPP assembly. This information is being used in drafting of the code of conduct to be circulated for review.|
|Action Item 2
Increase recruitment, promotion and retention efforts directed toward faculty of color, particularly Black faculty.
|The team is working with School leadership and the DEIB Task Force on the dissemination of the results of the SPP staff survey on diversity, inclusion and belonging. Next steps include beginning work on an SPP policy that will guide the creation of a development pipeline for hiring Black faculty and faculty of color — including PTK, TTK and adjunct faculty.|
|Action Item 3
Recruit more students of color; and increase support and resources for current students of color, student affinity groups especially Black students.
|The School continues to increase resources for current students of color and affinity groups. Immediate access to extra funds ($5,000) has been made available through PSGA. A collaboration with area HBCUs will include a January event that demonstrates the benefits of earning an MPP. Additionally, a partnership with Northwestern High School has been forged to create a policy-related student organization. The joint project will begin in the spring.|
|Action Item 4
Provide ongoing antiracism and inclusion training for faculty, staff and senior leadership.
|Required workshops, student listening sessions and antiracism events will be offered in the fall and spring of this academic year. Those leading this action are currently meeting with potential facilitators to identify workshop leaders and have distributed a survey to current students to help inform the listening sessions.|
|Action Item 5
Require and develop more course offerings focused on racism/antiracism and social policy.
|A proposal has been presented to PCC for consideration, to make Policy 699D (Social Identity, Pluralism, and Public Policy) a required graduate course starting in Fall 2021. Additional antiracism and policy-focused courses will be offered beginning Spring 2021.
|Action Item 6
Create more inclusive classrooms and course content, especially prioritizing more antiracism content across courses.
|The team continues to receive feedback on the draft syllabi statement. Additionally, we have collected syllabi from undergraduate and graduate classes to understand course needs with regard to diverse content. We will use this information to develop a resource database to help faculty expand and diversify their classroom content. We welcome resources from our community as well, so please feel free to reach out if you have any to share!|
|Action Item 7
Develop and strengthen relationships with grassroots racial justice organizations.
|DEIB and the broader SPP community continue to host virtual conversations on antiracism, COVID-19, elections and other policy intersections. Events this October included those hosted by CivIC, the Do Good Institute, the Brody Forum and NASPAA panels.|
|Action Item 8
Develop more antiracist public policy research and resources.
|DEIB has established a seed grant program. The program receives applications and aims to secure funding for faculty doing antiracist research.|
|Action Item 9
Use SPP's platform to denounce anti-Black racism and commit to being a more antiracist school.
|Redesigned the DEIB webpage with resources and progress toward our 9 antiracist actions, and will use social media highlight particular stories, events, etc. cross-posted on the webpage. Starting in November, we will be sharing a monthly e-newsletter to update the community on our progress.|