Office for Institutional Diversity

Diversity, Inclusion, and Anti-racism at Reed: A Progress Report

Reed is committed to creating a welcoming and inclusive environment for students from every background and identity and to eliminating inequities and barriers that prevent students from engaging fully in their Reed education.

On September 26, 2016, student protesters, organized by Reedies Against Racism, challenged Reed administrators and faculty to scrutinize institutional policies and practices and work together to combat racism on campus. Student protesters submitted a list of demands to President Kroger—ranging from enhanced financial aid and support services to changes to the curriculum. The Reed community is working collaboratively and diligently to reform and strengthen our programs, policies, pedagogy, and practices to address the concerns raised by Reedies Against Racism.

Measuring progress on complex issues is difficult, and communicating about progress, especially digitally, is fraught. How and what to do to fight institutional racism warrants dialogue and deep discussions. We hope that the following will provide some answers and establish common ground upon which we can stand together in order to continue to move forward. We created a Q&A grouped into categories and tied the answers to each Reedies Against Racism demand.

Want to discuss these issues further and get involved? Join Student Services and the Office for Institutional Diversity for community discussions on these topics. Approximately two weeks before each meeting, community members will receive a reminder and the opportunity to submit questions prior to the meeting.

Anti-racism

Q. Has the college administration made a commitment to anti-racism at Reed? (19)

A. The Reed community remains deeply committed to the goals expressed in Reed’s diversity statement. In January 2017, President Kroger released an anti-racism statement to the Reed community that reads, in part:

“As president of Reed College, I am committed to fostering an educational environment in which students, faculty, and staff from all backgrounds can live, work, and learn as freely as possible from the debilitating effects of prejudice, discrimination, and marginalization. Racism in all its forms is antithetical to this commitment.”

In spring 2017, in partnership with the Committee on Diversity, both the Student Senate and the faculty Community Affairs Committee (CAC) approved an anti-racism statement drafted by the Committee on Diversity. The statement challenges the community to combat racism in all its forms, not only the isolated actions of individuals, but also the policies and practices of the institution. The CAC will move the statement for adoption by the full faculty at the September 2017 faculty meeting.

Questions? Contact Mary James, Dean for Institutional Diversity.

Q. Can Reed’s mission statement be modified so that it is anti-racist? (19)

A. The mission statement falls under the purview of Reed’s faculty and trustees.

Faculty members who have suggested changes to the mission statement may make recommendations to the Committee on Academic Policy and Planning (CAPP). If CAPP supports the recommendation, they will submit it to the faculty for a vote. If approved, the recommended change must then be approved by the Board of Trustees.

Students who have suggested changes to the mission statement may make recommendations to the Student Committee for Academic Policy and Planning (SCAPP), which in turn would make the suggestion to CAPP, and the process proceeds as stated above.

Questions? Contact Nigel Nicholson, Dean of the Faculty.

Professional Development

Q. Does Reed provide professional development for faculty and staff to increase their knowledge of and proficiency in inclusive pedagogical and workplace practices? Are these professional development opportunities mandatory? (15 and 22)

A. The Dean of the Faculty’s Office, the Office for Institutional Diversity, and the Center for Teaching and Learning are committed to helping faculty and staff work effectively and sensitively with an increasingly diverse student body. The Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) hosts ongoing workshops to help faculty adopt research-based inclusive pedagogical practices in and outside of the classroom. The CTL continues to expand its offerings on inclusive pedagogical practices to respond to the specific needs of faculty teaching students at different stages and in different disciplines. The CTL also offers workshops for staff to increase their knowledge of and proficiency in workplace-based inclusive practices. Reed also offers all employees opportunities for external professional development, including diversity training. Faculty participation in inclusive pedagogical practice workshops is not mandatory.

Questions? Contact Mary James, Dean for Institutional Diversity.

Q. What training is provided to Health & Counseling Center (HCC) staff members to help them address race issues and other diversity issues? (14)

A. In the 2016–17 academic year, many of the HCC staff, including all of the returning leadership team, participated in 30 hours of training led by the Center for Equity and Inclusion (CEI). The remainder of the HCC staff will have the opportunity to engage in this training in the coming months. The HCC is discussing ways that CEI may provide further consultation and guidance around hiring practices and clinic culture. Counseling and medical staff engaged in training related to genderqueer and nonbinary concerns, and additional training will be provided to all staff this year.

In collaboration with the Dean for Institutional Diversity and Human Resources, the HCC developed a plan for attracting, hiring, and retaining staff of color. Reed’s president and vice presidents have provided significant support to the psychologist resident position, allowing the HCC to be nationally competitive as a residency site, further advancing the goal of building a more diverse staff capable of meeting the needs of all Reed students. These efforts have yielded meaningful results: for the coming year, two of our three full- time resident positions and two of five intern positions have been filled by people of color. Furthermore, the positions left vacant by the retirement of three long-time staff members have been filled by people who bring experience, expertise, and diversity to the Reed community.

The HCC is collaborating with the Office of Inclusive Community and Community Wellness to locate staff in the Multicultural Resource Center (MRC) one day per week, with the goal of providing better access to clinical consultation and support .

Questions? Contact Mike Brody, Vice President for Student Services.

Admission and Financial Aid

Q. How is Reed increasing recruitment outreach to predominantly POC schools? (6)

A. The diversity of Reed's student body has reached all-time highs over the past four years. Milyon Trulove, Reed’s Vice President and Dean of Admission & Financial Aid, continues to increase outreach to prospective students from high schools in marginalized communities and those with student bodies comprising predominantly students of color.

The Admission Office engages in several initiatives aimed at making diverse students aware of Reed College. Initiatives include sponsored travel to campus during and outside of admission events, including the “Discover Reed” program, the “Junior Scholars” program, and the “Spring Invitational” program, partnering with community-based organizations, and visiting high schools that serve diverse communities. Assembling a diverse class of scholars is a top priority and we welcome your ideas and suggestions.

Questions? Contact Milyon Trulove, Vice President and Dean of Admission & Financial Aid.

Q. How does Reed’s financial aid program support students who need financial support to attend Reed? (25)

A. The goal of Reed's financial aid program is to make a Reed education available to all qualified students who would otherwise be unable to afford it. We awarded $23 million in Reed grants in 2015–16 and $27 million in 2016–17, an increase of 17%. The college has updated its financial aid guidebook, Financing Reed, to provide more transparency, especially regarding how Reed determines financial eligibility.

We also offer several resources for understanding financial aid and addressing changing circumstances. These include

  • financial aid counseling appointments;
  • requests for reconsideration of financial aid;
  • requests for emergency funds;
  • requests for emergency loans.

A more detailed description of these and many other services can be found on the Key Support Resources page.

The financial aid team regularly hosts listening sessions. These discussions have helped inform the work of a newly formed team that will address individual students’ financial issues as they arise. This team includes staff from financial aid, student services, and the multicultural resource center.

Questions? Contact Sandy Sundstrom, Director of Financial Aid.

Q. How are meal plan costs factored into the financial aid awards? (8)

A. The price of a meal plan reflects both the direct cost of food as well as the indirect and fixed costs of providing food at Reed. These costs are factored into the financial aid awards for all students, including those with high financial need.

Questions? Contact Sandy Sundstrom, Director of Financial Aid.

Q. Does Reed prioritize need-based students in the housing lottery? (7)

A. Students who feel that living off campus would represent a hardship are invited to apply for priority housing prior to the room registration process (formerly referred to as the housing lottery). Staff from the Dean of Students Office, Residence Life, and Disability Support Services reviewed priority applications in November 2016 and again in March 2017. Thirty-six students were approved for priority on-campus housing for 2017–18. The majority of these students demonstrated financial hardships.

We referred students with disabilities seeking on-campus housing accommodations to the disability support services office; disability support services approved the vast majority of these requests to live on campus through this new process.

Also, plans are taking shape to open a new residence hall in fall 2019 that will increase availability of on-campus accessible housing for all Reed students.

Questions? Contact Bruce Smith, Dean of Students.

Q. What has Reed done to increase opportunities for students to earn Federal Work-Study? (25)

A. This year, Students for Education, Empowerment, and Direct Service (SEEDS) and the Office of Financial Aid simplified the Off-Campus Federal Work-Study (OCFWS) process for students and community partners. We increased opportunities for students to earn Federal Work-Study (FWS) while engaging in meaningful experiences in the broader Portland community. Once hired, students now complete only one online survey before becoming eligible to earn FWS wages with OCFWS community partners. In addition, we encourage students to contact SEEDS to establish OCFWS partnerships with new organizations. SEEDS continues to gather feedback from students, staff, and community partners about current opportunities and aims to expand options for students, particularly related to social justice issues, activism, and advocacy.

Questions? Contact Tara Sonali Miller, SEEDS Program Manager.

Q. Has Reed’s adjusted financial aid for off-campus living considered the increase in rent in Portland? (9)

A. In 2016–17, the financial aid allowance for living off campus was increased to $11,030. The assessment process for determining the allowance is online.

Questions? Contact Milyon Trulove, Vice President and Dean of Admission & Financial Aid.

Faculty

Q. How is Reed addressing the goal to hire more tenure-track faculty of color? (16)

A. The faculty Committee on Advancement and Tenure (CAT, which oversees faculty searches and hiring processes), the Dean of the Faculty’s office, Human Resources (which coordinates staff hiring processes), and the Office for Institutional Diversity have been engaged in a multi-year, multi-pronged effort to increase the racial and ethnic diversity of our faculty and staff. The effort includes

  • building networks and partnerships locally and across academia to actively build robust and diverse candidate pools;
  • writing job ads and position descriptions in such a way as to attract qualified candidates from myriad backgrounds; 
  • continually examining and refining our search procedures to minimize the deleterious effects of unconscious bias in candidate evaluations.

In the five years since the creation of the Office for Institutional Diversity, from 2011–16, 46% of the hires for tenure-track faculty were faculty of color. In the five years prior, from 2006–11, 11% of the hires for tenure-track faculty were faculty of color. We have made tremendous progress, from 11% to 46%, and continue to prioritize this endeavor.

Members of the Reed community can help in the effort to create more diverse candidate pools by regularly checking the open faculty and staff positions and passing opportunities on to your personal networks.

Questions? Contact Mary James, Dean for Institutional Diversity.

Q. How can students formally evaluate professors on their handling of racial topics, gender topics, queer topics, and their general openness? (20 and 21)

A. All courses are evaluated at or toward the end of each semester. Evaluation procedures currently involve three forms. One is a bubble sheet, which includes a question on the fair and respectful treatment of students. The other two are open-ended requests for evaluation; one form goes to the Committee on Advancement and Tenure (CAT) and the other goes to the instructor after semester grades are turned in. Both forms give students an opportunity to comment on the professor’s handling of race, gender, and sexuality in the class.

CAT is currently looking at evaluation procedures and has invited students to talk to the committee about their concerns.

Questions? Contact Nigel Nicholson, Dean of the Faculty.

Q. Can a student bring an honor case against a faculty member? Will the review board consist of students and faculty? (20 and 23)

A. All members of the Reed community are bound by the honor principle. Complaints against professors may be filed with the Dean of the Faculty. Possible sanctions range from additional training to suspension and termination.

Yes, students can make complaints against faculty related to honor violations through the faculty grievance process. Should a hearing board be convened, students would not serve on the board. Given college policies, labor regulations, prior agreements with Reed faculty and a long-standing culture of faculty governance, it is not possible for students to sit on faculty grievance panels that review complaints against faculty members.

The faculty grievance policy is a complex document, reflecting an effort to balance the need to provide appropriate workplace protections for employees and an effective process for students to lodge complaints. These procedures are designed to allow for a variety of approaches to match the variety of possible situations:

  • Informal mediation under the guidance of the Honor Council, where appropriate
  • Formal resolution by the dean of faculty
  • Formal hearing boards

In most cases, we encourage students to speak directly with the faculty member in question, but if you have a concern or complaint that you do not feel you can address directly with a faculty member or that you feel would be inappropriate to address directly with a faculty member, you have the option of raising it with any of the following:

  • Your academic adviser or another faculty member with whom you feel comfortable
  • The dean of students (currently, Bruce Smith)
  • The dean for institutional diversity (currently, Mary James)
  • The dean of the faculty (currently, Nigel Nicholson)

Any of the people listed above can advise you on the next steps in the process as well as on the process as a whole.

We will include a section on filing complaints against faculty members in new student orientation.

Questions? Contact Nigel Nicholson, Dean of the Faculty.

Q. Will the faculty revise academic probation policies that do not allow students on academic probation to run for student body positions?

A. In December 2016, the faculty voted to revise its policy on academic probation. Students on probation are no longer prohibited from holding elective or appointed office in community government.

Questions? Contact Mike Brody, Vice President for Student Services.

Support

Q. Will Reed increase staffing in support of black students? (5, 10, 11, and 17)

A. The Office for Inclusive Community created a new professional staff position, the Multicultural Resource Center (MRC) Program Manager, in 2017. Ruby White is Reed's inaugural MRC program manager. She will work with MRC staff and partner with student groups to expand the MRC's reach and strengthen systems of support for black students and students of color.

The Office for Inclusive Community also created a new Black Student Outreach and Support Coordinator position in the MRC during spring 2017. This student holds regular office hours in the MRC and will continue to work closely with staff in the Office for Inclusive Community, all of the MRC staff, and the Black Students at Reed group.

We are also working to expand the Peer Mentor Program (PMP). For the 2017–18 academic year, we hired 10 additional mentors to accommodate a greater number of incoming first-year and transfer students and to provide additional student leadership opportunities for students from underrepresented and marginalized backgrounds. We created a new PMP Alumni Advisory Board comprising alumni who were involved in PMP and the MRC with the goal of facilitating mentoring and networking relationships between current students of color and first generation college students and alumni with shared experiences.

Questions? Contact Bruce Smith, Dean of Students, or Dayspring Mattole, Assistant Dean for Inclusive Community.

Q. What academic support is available to help address the specific needs of students from different backgrounds? (5)

A. Reed is committed to providing students with useful and timely academic support. The college offers peer tutoring, workshops, and individualized support through the Academic Resource Center (located in the Dorothy Johansen House, or DoJo). Professional staff in the DoJo have reviewed relevant data and have begun to explore ways to increase diversity among peer tutors.

Academic Support Services sends a request three times a year, in January, May, and August, to all faculty members to nominate students to serve as tutors. As a first step toward building a more diverse peer tutoring staff, these requests now explicitly encourage faculty to nominate students from populations underrepresented in the current tutoring pool. With support from faculty, staff will also encourage students who are interested in becoming tutors to speak with faculty about recommendations, rather than waiting to be nominated. Academic Support has also collaborated with the Office for Institutional Diversity to add a substantial discussion of inclusive practices to its mandatory orientation for new tutors.

January Academy is a program that has been established for first-year students and first-year transfer students who would like to strengthen their writing, quantitative, and study skills. It is a cost-free, three-week residential workshop.

Questions? Contact Mike Brody, Vice President for Student Services.

Q. How does Reed support international students looking for employment opportunities? (24)

A. International students are encouraged to work with the Center for Life Beyond Reed advisers on career direction, alumni connections, resume building, and fellowship funding awards.

International students who wish to pursue off-campus opportunities for pay may apply for work authorization through the Optional Practical Training program. In addition, Reed offers the Summer Experience Award to international students through the Office of International Student Services. Students are also welcome to apply for competitive funds called Summer Internship Awards supporting unpaid internships through the Center for Life Beyond Reed.

We have heard from some students interested in another program that facilitates off-campus work opportunities for international students, Curricular Practical Training (CPT). These matters are governed by federal regulations, and in order to qualify as CPT, the work must be an integral part of the Reed curriculum. As far as we are aware, Reed does not currently offer any classes that require off-campus internships, so our international students do not qualify for CPT. There is ongoing work among Reed faculty interested in pursuing CPT, and we will provide updates as this work progresses.

Questions: Contact Dana Lawson, Assistant Dean of Students for International Student Services, or Alice Harra, Director of the Center for Life Beyond Reed.

Curriculum—HUM 110 and Comparative Race and Ethnic Studies

Q. Will the HUM 110 curriculum be modified to address racial concerns? (13)

A. The decennial review of HUM 110 is underway. In spring 2017, surveys were administered by the Office of Institutional Research to faculty, all enrolled students, and recent alumni. Two HUM 110 faculty committees have been working over the 2017 summer, one to draft an internal evaluation of the course and one to draft a proposal for a revised course syllabus. Both documents will be considered for adoption by the entire HUM faculty during fall 2017.

As part of the review, invitations were extended to prominent faculty in the humanities at other institutions to serve as external reviewers for the course.

Finally, various members of the HUM 110 faculty have attended and will continue to attend college-sponsored workshops on unconscious bias, race dynamics in and outside of the classroom, and mediating conflict in conference discussion.

Questions? Contact Elizabeth Drumm, Professor of Spanish and Humanities and HUM 110 chair.

Q. Will Reed add a comparative race and ethnic studies major? (18)

A. In May 2017, the faculty Committee on Academic Policy and Planning (CAPP) approved a new faculty position in Comparative Race and Ethnic Studies/Sociology to make the major, proposed by the 2013 ad hoc committee on Global, Race, and Ethnic Studies, a reality. An ad hoc committee is examining the possibility of an accelerated start for the program in fall 2018, and we are seeking funding for the new position so that we can begin the search this coming spring for a start in fall 2019.

The Comparative Race and Ethnic Studies major will be structured like other interdisciplinary programs at Reed in which several faculty members from different disciplines will teach in the program with at least one core faculty member (the new faculty position).

Questions? Contact Nigel Nicholson, Dean of the Faculty.

Alcohol and Other Drugs (AOD)—Data, Enforcement, and Restorative Practices

Q. How does Reed review and report demographic data on AOD violations? (4)

A. Community Safety Officers (CSOs) are trained to acknowledge and avoid unconscious bias. The Community Safety Office (CS) has posted demographic data on AOD violations from 2010–15 that suggest that, as a combined group, students of color are engaged by CSOs regarding AOD violations at about the same rate as white students.

The Community Safety Office conducts an internal review every August. Community Safety staff performed an additional review over the 2016–17 winter break, taking into account both recent student concerns and AOD data from the 2016–17 year. CS provided information derived from the review in the spring, along with updated demographic data on AOD violations. We will continue to collect AOD data and provide periodic updates to the community, most likely through the AOD Committee.

CS is also collaborating with the Office for Inclusive Community and the Dean for Institutional Diversity to provide additional contracted training to all community safety staff focusing on issues of unconscious bias in enforcement practices.

Questions? Contact Mike Brody, Vice President for Student Services.

Q. How does Reed incorporate restorative justice practices when students are in violation of an AOD policy? (3)

A. Sanctions for alleged AOD violations are determined by the AOD Review Panel and, in relatively few cases, the Judicial Board. When recommending sanctions, the panel places particular emphasis on addressing potentially harmful AOD use and abuse, and most interventions are focused on treatment and educational outcomes, as opposed to taking a punitive approach.

Questions? Contact Mike Brody, Vice President for Student Services.

Graduation and Retention

Q. Is Reed transparent about graduation and retention rates? Is the graduation rate lower for students of color? (12)

A. The Office of Institutional Research website includes graduation statistics by the following demographics:

  • Overall graduation rates (four, five, and six year)
  • Graduation rates by ethnicity (six year)
  • Graduation rates by gender (six year)
  • Graduation rates by financial aid categories (six year)

The average six-year graduation rate among black students who graduated between 2011 and 2016 is 65%, compared to an overall rate of 79%. President Kroger has declared that the graduation rate for all Reedies is too low, and that the achievement gap reflected in these statistics is a call to action.

President Kroger has convened an ad-hoc committee of students, staff, and faculty to evaluate the college’s efforts to support all Reed students, in particular those who have been historically underrepresented or marginalized, as well as those whom for any reason may require additional support in order to thrive at Reed. The committee’s work is ongoing and will include substantial engagement with the Reed community during the 2017–18 academic year.

We are committed more than ever before to enabling/empowering all Reed students to achieve success, both in terms of the metrics Reed measures, as well as on the terms each student sets for themselves.

Questions? Contact committee co-chairs Mike Brody, Vice President for Student Services, and Mary James, Dean for Institutional Diversity.

Reed’s Business Relationships and Investments

Q. Does Reed have investments in prison labor or other anti-black practices (specifically NSA and GEO stocks)? (2)

A. To date we have found no such investments. Specifically, going back at least as far as 1993, Reed has held no direct investment in Oregon Prison Industries, Oregon Correction Enterprises, or Oregon State Corrections Industries. Students raised a particular business relationship with Sustainable Furniture Inc. as a potential concern, and we can confirm that the company does not use prison labor. The NSA is a government agency and does not issue stock. Reed’s investment policy is determined by the Board of Trustees.

Questions? Contact Lorraine Arvin, Vice President and Treasurer.

Other

Q. Will Reed declare the college a sanctuary for undocumented immigrants?

A. President Kroger declared Reed to be a Sanctuary College on Nov. 18, 2016.

Q. Did Reed pay faculty and staff during the boycott on Monday, September 26, 2016? (1)

A. All staff and faculty who participated in the boycott events on campus were paid. Faculty who stayed home to honor the boycott were paid, as all faculty set their own schedules in accordance with their professional obligations.

Q. What other advancements, not mentioned above, have we made?

A. Food insecurity: Over the past year, a group of students, staff, and faculty convened a working group with the goal of better understanding issues of food insecurity on campus and strategies for reducing barriers to reliable, healthy food sources for Reed community members. The Food Security Initiative is a series of projects aimed at providing short-term support to community members experiencing food insecurity, as well as preventative and longer-term solutions to reduce food insecurity in the Reed community.

With support from Student Senate, Bon Appetit, and many generous individuals and departments, SEEDS established a summer food and supply pantry, which will become a year-round resource beginning this fall. The Reed Community Pantry is on the lower level of Gray Campus Center (GCC 042) and provides items at no cost to students, staff, and faculty. It includes a refrigerator, clothing rack, and shelving for food, hygiene products, textbooks, and school supplies. The current open hours are Sundays from 1:30 to 5:30 p.m. and Wednesdays from 3:30 to 7:30 p.m.

The Food Security Initiative works closely with student groups, faculty, and staff to

  • facilitate referrals to local and campus resources;
  • support and host events, such as cooking and financial literacy workshops;
  • coordinate food and supply drives with campus partners;
  • develop food recovery systems with campus partners; and
  • collaborate with the Reed community on other initiatives to address food insecurity.

Questions? Contact SEEDS Program Manager, Tara Sonali Miller, or Assistant Dean for Inclusive Community, Dayspring Mattole.

Social Justice Research and Education Fund: In 2017, Reed established the Social Justice Research and Education Fund. The fund is sponsored by Reed’s Office for Institutional Diversity and the Center for Life Beyond Reed and was made possible by generous donations from Kathy and Alex Martinez ’73 and the Dudley T. Dougherty Foundation. The fund supports summer and school-year internship opportunities on or off campus. Students can work on campus on projects guided by faculty or staff or work off campus in the public, private, nonprofit, business, and entrepreneurial sectors in unpaid summer internships.

Q. What other new opportunities has Reed provided for students from historically marginalized groups to connect to peers and mentors on and off campus?

  • The Office for Institutional Diversity (OID) sponsored the inaugural (now annual) Community of Color Dinner and Celebration (dinner for faculty, staff, and students of color).
  • OID sponsored nine students to attend the National C3 Conference (Creating Changes Consortium) focused on building pipelines for students of color into graduate programs and graduate students of color into faculty positions. In the last two years, OID has sponsored nine students to attend NCORE (National Conference on Race and Ethnicity in American Higher Education).
  • OID and the Office for Inclusive Community will sponsor students to attend the upcoming “Change Now!” Students of Color Conference at Whitman College and the Black Students Summit at PSU.