William & Mary continues to take steady, sustained steps toward our goal to eliminate bias systematically in university structures and campus culture. As part of that effort, the university engaged Ivy Planning Group in 2021 to conduct an organizational assessment to identify hidden and apparent barriers to belonging. Based on that assessment, the university has identified several key actions to be taken.
The assessment is part of William & Mary’s efforts to build a strong foundation of data from which to make decisions in key competitive areas as the university looks toward long-term, strategic operations. Its results will inform W&M’s Inclusive Excellence Framework and the Vision 2026 strategic planning effort.
The assessment revealed four main themes in its findings:
- W&M has several current-state conditions that enabled DEI success.
- A lack of accountability for DEI execution, along with organization autonomy, has hindered DEI progress.
- Too few leaders understand DEI is an imperative and opportunity enabler.
- People of color have more negative experiences at W&M than their white peers.
Based on recommendations in the report, W&M has committed to:
- Creating a culture of accountability and continuous improvement to advance the university’s core values throughout the community.
- Cultivating cultural competency and civil discourse throughout the university community with associated programming and services to bolster critical skillsets.
- Completing a three-year faculty hiring pilot to recruit and retain excellent faculty with expertise in inclusive teaching.
- Utilizing community data and annual surveys to improve health and wellness and ensure equitable learning environments and workplaces.
- Ensuring affordability by growing financial aid and providing funded internship opportunities for all students.
- Achieving the Commonwealth of Virginia’s goal of 42% use of Small, Women, and Minority-Owned (SWaM) businesses in procuring goods and services.