Leadership Notes > 2023-24 > Black Equity Initiative Committee holds first meeting

Black Equity Initiative Committee holds first meeting

DePaul is committed to standing in solidarity with the concerns of Black students, faculty and staff. Designing DePaul’s Black Equity Initiative (BEI) formalizes this commitment.

The BEI Committee convened on Oct. 26, and we would like to share a brief update about how we will drive this initiative forward and what we hope to accomplish.

The Black Equity Initiative Goal​
The goal of the BEI is to transform the experiences of Black students, faculty and staff on campus through positive and successful outcomes that highlight, support, retain and foster success. Our committee members are excited to work with the Black community at DePaul to provide support, resources and institutional will to achieve equity. We will gather data and track progress toward this goal to measure success and promote accountability.

The Five Pillars of the Black Equity Initiative
As we explore opportunities and define actions to drive the BEI forward, five pillars will focus and guide us:
  1. Student recruitment, retention and graduation
  2. Faculty and staff recruitment, retention, promotion and success
  3. Coordination, collaboration, communication and accountability across the university
  4. Innovation and investment in student support and academic programs that foster success
  5. Building institutional capacity to incorporate DEI into curriculum, promoting inclusive teaching, and building DEI competencies for all stakeholders

BEI Committee Members
Ensuring a chorus of voices and varying perspectives is important, so the committee includes leaders from across the university – individuals from the Office of Institutional Diversity and Equity, Athletics, Mission and Ministry, The Black Cultural Center, the Student Government Association, the Black Student Union and Sankofa, among others. You can find a list of current committee members here.

Building on Progress​
As President Rob stated in his January 2023 message, DePaul has adopted many requests from the Black Equity Initiative and the Task Force to Address Vincentians’ Relationship with Slavery. This is critically important work — if we want to change the course of racism around the world, we must begin right here on our campus.

Part of our charge is to find ways to increase support for Black students to meet their needs. In the first meeting, we discussed how budget decisions and various barriers have left the Black community and other marginalized communities at DePaul with limited funding, communal spaces and programming. These limited resources do not adequately support the needs of our Black students, faculty and staff. Part of our charge is to find ways to address these needs.

Designing DePaul is a collaborative effort that includes all university partners and communities working together to plan DePaul’s futu​re. We are excited to lead the BEI committee, and we commit to keeping you updated on our progress as we move toward unveiling a BEI strategic plan by February 2024. You can also stay updated by visiting the Designing DePaul Black Equity Initiative (BEI) page.