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Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Statement for the Trudy Busch Valentine School of Nursing

The Trudy Busch Valentine School of Nursing (TBVSON) is committed to fostering a community where all faculty, staff, and students are respected, accepted, and valued. We strive to constantly advance diversity, equity, and inclusion and support efforts to embrace the unique attributes of every person. We are determined to provide excellence through recruiting and retaining a diverse workforce and student body by creating a climate that is respectful and supportive of everyone’s success.

Our School of Nursing is committed to opportunities that promote equity in our community, and in our educational and research practices. We strive to reduce health disparities and deliver culturally humble and high-quality health care. We acknowledge the imbalances of power, access, opportunity, and resources in our society that result in health disparities (e.g., quantitative differences in health status or quality of care) and health inequities (e.g., power imbalances between groups of people).

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

We are committed to respecting and educating the whole person (e.g., mind, body, heart, and spirit).  Diversity is a broad range of individual, population, and social characteristics, including but not limited to age; sex; race; ethnicity; sexual orientation; gender identity; family structures; geographic locations; national origin; immigrants and refugees; language; physical, functional, and learning abilities; religious beliefs; and socioeconomic status (AACN, 2017).

Equity is about fairness including the fair and just treatment of all individuals. Equity includes access to resources and opportunities for all people while building better outcomes for the historically and currently disadvantaged populations. Equity requires targeted strategies. To differentiate between equity and equality, equality is the equal treatment of all or sameness. Equality provides the same resources and opportunities for everyone, without consideration of their needs, not everyone is situated the same (Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, 2019).

Inclusion is the active engagement of all voices within an organization’s membership, leadership, policy-setting, and decision-making units, and overall profile. Inclusion is also the intentional incorporation of strategies and practices that foster a sense of belonging by promoting meaningful interactions among persons and groups representing different traits, perceptions, and experiences (AACN,2020; Metzger et al., 2020). Inclusivity acknowledges and values differences and embraces relationships with others whose lived experiences may be dramatically different than their own (Martinez-Acosta, 2018).

Anti-Racist Commitment

As a School of Nursing, we champion the many aspects of diversity represented by our faculty, staff, and students. We individually and collectively are committed to anti-racist treatment and will continually examine our procedures and processes that might advantage one group over another. This commitment to anti-racist treatment will heighten our awareness and our ability to take action to dismantle all forms of oppression, be it interpersonal, systemic, or institutional and structural.

Cultural Humility

The TBVSON embraces the central tenets of the cultural humility framework and uses this framework as a compass to ensure sustainable diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts. The cultural humility framework includes three features:

  1. A lifelong commitment to self-evaluation and self-critique.
  2. Preventing and rectifying abuses of power imbalances in the teacher-student, clinician-patient/family, colleague-colleague, and academic-community dynamic.
  3. Developing and expanding mutually beneficial and non-paternalistic clinical and community partnerships.

Embracing this framework, we value and respect the life experiences, uniqueness, and the perspectives of everyone which allows us to provide innovative and high-quality care to patients, families, our community, and beyond.

Our Pledge

In keeping with our Jesuit mission, we are constantly striving to foster a diverse, equitable and inclusive environment that welcomes all expressions of diversity and identity, including race, ethnicity, national origin, age, ability, gender, sexual orientation, faith, and ideology.

The faculty, staff and students at the School of Nursing are committed to fostering an environment that is free of bias, discrimination, and harassment, in the classroom and in the broader university community. We are a community that strives to model reflection, advocacy, and care for community in an effort to work toward an equitable, democratic and sustainable society.

For additional information, please view this infographic: Strategic Framework for Inclusive Excellence (PDF).