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Core Values

Learn more about the core values embraced by Saint Louis University's Division of Diversity and Innovative Community Engagement.

Accessibility

If our diversity work does not include neurodivergence and physical, mental, emotional, and physical disabilities, then our diversity work is incomplete. We will invest in making our division and our campus one of Inclusive Excellence by hiring a specialist to ensure our materials, policies, procedures, and unit employees are welcoming and universally accessible.

Accountability and Vulnerability

We believe that we should have built-in feedback loops to foster a culture of accountability and vulnerability. We must be accountable and vulnerable to community and do everything in our power to listen, learn, and adapt to community needs.

Activate

We believe that education requires activation. We are committed to activating internal and external stakeholders to action.

Active Listeners

We pledge to be active listeners, which requires us to be present emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. Active listening requires that we listen to understand and apply information without concern for rebuttals or persuasion. We pledge to listen to and value the expertise of our internal and external stakeholders’ ideas and experiences.

Agitate

We believe that in order to bring about change, and become the most inclusive and equitable AJCU campus, we must be transparent about past and present harms, speak up about them, and confront them head on. This may seem divisive, but we acknowledge that the only way to transform cultures and structures is to acknowledge them wholly and with transparency. We pledge to speak up about harms, acknowledge the full weight of their existence, and do everything in our power to repair past harms and prevent future harms.

Alignment

We believe that we must establish criteria for yes that is in alignment with our priorities and the mission of the university. By eliminating charges that are not in alignment, we ensure our work matters, we have capacity to carry out our work, and the people and communities we serve have a clear understanding of who we are, what we do, and how we do it.

Assessibility

We believe an efficient and successful team must be able to measure their success via qualitative and quantitative assessment methods to account for both cultural change and equity indicators.

Catalyst

St. Louis City’s transformation into the most equitable and engaged cities on the globe requires buy-in from every facet of the city. We believe that SLU can be one of many catalysts to lead the transformation. 

Communication

We believe communication must be open, honest, fluid and flowing through multiple channels to maximize audience participation.

Community Commitments

We must broaden our definition of community to be inclusive and reflect St. Louis city. To achieve an inclusive reflection, we must proactively engage our internal and external community members, fully recognizing that some people are both. We must become good neighbors in the most holistic and liberating ways.

Definitive Action

We must develop shared definitions of diversity, equity, accessibility, and Inclusive Excellence, and take collective action with a shared vision.

Educate

We recognize that we are a division in an institution of higher learning and have a commitment to educating our internal and external stakeholders to bring about cultural and structural transformation. 

Failing Fast and Taking Action

We believe that an efficient team is a team that collaborates on complex problems and shares the risk of failing fast together. When we experience a scarcity mindset, it is difficult to imagine and implement solutions without fear of repercussions. In an abundance mindset, we take risks and fail quickly in order to get to the solution. It is better to try and fail than to never try at all. We aim to be more mindful of the reasons we call meetings and the strategies we employ while meeting to maximize our time to act.

Flexible Essentialists

We operate from a foundation of flexible essentialism, or the practice of eliminating the clutter and busy tasks from our lives to focus on those tasks that fulfill our purpose, are in alignment with our goals of bringing about change, and fulfill our Jesuit mission.

From Charity to Change

We must relinquish the savior complex and see our work as social change versus  charitable. This requires valuing community members as experts of their own experiences and collaborating with community to bring about sustainable and equitable change rooted in liberation. As our mission reminds us, it is not our responsibility to work for others, but to leverage our resources and take action with others. 

Health and Wellness

We must cultivate a culture of campus-wide well-being.  This begins with healing from our own institutional histories. We must heal from historical and contemporary traumas and cultural practices that result in a scarcity mindset and leave little room for imagining. We must heal as individuals and as community so we are better prepared to act and cultivate mission-driven change.

Political, Not Partisan

We pledge to support student’s developing a passion for social issues and becoming engaged in their civic communities. This requires staying informed, exercising our right to vote, and participating in change efforts. We pledge to help students, faculty, staff, and administrators find their political voice and use it to fulfill the Jesuit mission.

Radical Rest

We believe that we must choose to rest and take care of ourselves and each other. Communal care and self-care prevent burnout and promote thriving. We acknowledge that our collective work at Saint Louis University is difficult work because we strive to live and walk in our Jesuit mission. The labor of structural and cultural transformation to benefit our neighbors, our communities, and ourselves requires radical rest.

Team Work

In order to establish Saint Louis University as an institution of Inclusive Excellence, we must work together to cultivate structural and cultural transformation across the entire University. This work requires 100% participation from every pocket of the University.

Transformation

We must re-imagine institutional policies, procedures and practices with an equity mindset. We must re-imagine, transform, and/or eliminate structures and cultures that create barriers for participation.

Transparency

We must be transparent about our efforts, the steps we are taking, and the fast fails and sweet successes because that instills trust in our division, keeps people abreast about our process, and assuages any residual fears due to historical, institutional distrust and lack of perceived movement and momentum.

Visibility

We pledge to communicate our story and share our successes with the globe and our on campus communities to generate visibility, raise our profile, and bring national and international attention to Saint Louis University.