Valerie's Library

The work surrounding diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) in higher education is not exclusive to Stockton University. 

Recognizing that, Valerie Hayes, chief officer for Diversity & Inclusion, is always looking to see what other universities and colleges are doing to advance DEI at their institutions. Below are some of the essays, newsletters and resources that she and others have compiled for our campus community. 

By the University of Southern California Race and Equity Center 

Below is a message from Valerie Hayes, introducing a report on the recent attacks on diversity, equity and inclusion efforts. 

Twenty-four (24) states have passed or are in the process of passing anti-DEI legislation on the belief that diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) is discrimination and indoctrination and therefore must be eliminated. 

The anti-DEI movement in higher education is part of a larger focus on higher education, such as academic freedom and faculty governance.

The assault on DEI, in part, started with a misunderstanding of critical race theory.

In September 2020 during the COVID pandemic, we began to experience the first legislative efforts when there was misinformation about critical race being taught in K-12. A 2021 INSIGHT Into Diversity article described critical race theory as “a legal theory developed by Kimberle Crenshaw, a constitutional law professor at Columbia University School of Law and a leading scholar on critical race theory. Critical race theory was developed in the 1970s to help explain how systemic racism has shaped the U.S. legal system.”

Critical race theory is not taught in K-12, and never has been. Age-appropriate American history that includes Black history is taught in K-12. 

Dr. Damon Williams who is well-known among the chief diversity officer community defined the anti-DEI movement in this way: “A highly coordinated legislative effort to limit diversity, equity, and inclusion freedoms, definitions, programs, funding, strategies, and approaches that benefit women, LGBTQ, racial, ethnic, disability, and other diverse communities, and DEI champions by changing laws, policy, and language in public and by extension, private institutions.” 

He identified four (4) main policy areas: “Anti-strategic DEI leadership, anti-DEI curriculum & training, anti-LGBTQ community, and anti-reproductive rights.” 

He also identified the diverse groups and categories impacted by the anti-DEI legislative movement: "DEI Generally, race & ethnicity, internation, transgender & gender identity, women reproductive, higher education, K-12, health care, government, and private companies.”  

Dr. Shaun Harper, founding executive director of the University of Southern California Race and Equity Center, released a new report, Truths About DEI on College Campuses: Evidence-Based Expert Responses to Politicized Misinformation, in which he and his colleagues delve into the background of the current anti-DEI movement and combat misinformation.

About the University of Southern California 

  • Motto: Palmam qui meruit ferat, Let whoever earns the palm bear it
  • Founded: 1880
  • Location: Los Angeles, California
  • Enrollment: 47,000 undergraduate and graduate
  • Curriculum: 23+ schools of study
  • First-year retention: 96% (2023)

By Winston-Salem State University 

Just last year, WSSU's Nursing Honor Society partnered with Stockton University and offered forums that centered on being multicultural healthcare pfoessionals. Below is the feature that WSSU wrote for their news website. 

Winston-Salem State University’s Rho Lambda Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing was awarded the International Chapter Key Award for its excellence in service, community outreach and leadership development at the 47th Biennial Convention in San Antonio, Texas, on Nov. 15.

Chapter President, Dr. Kimya Nance, and Secretary Hartensia Davis-Bailey, accepted the award. The chapter is now a three-time awardee of the International Key Award.

The chapter has conducted several outreach projects throughout the region. In April 2023, the chapter partnered with Red Bank ministries to donate more than 200 blankets for patients in local hemodialysis centers. To address food insecurity, the chapter launched a Meals for Tots outreach project sponsored by Texas Roadhouse. The outreach project provided free meals for preschool-age children in the Winston-Salem community.

This semester, the nursing honor society partnered with the Piedmont Health Services and Sickle Cell Agency to support families of need with a Thanksgiving dinner, and it also collected coats to support the Piedmont Black Nurses Association efforts for WSOC TV Channel 9’s Steve Coats for Kids drive in Charlotte, NC. 

The chapter offers its members funding for professional development and research, a mentoring program, leadership development apprenticeships, and student sponsorships for the NCLEX-RN, Family Nurse Practitioner and Nurse Educator Certification exams. Through its elevation series, the chapter has hosted research forums, webinars on racial inequity in healthcare, and seminars to support new registered nurses during their first year of practice. 

Currently, the chapter has partnered with Stockton University’s Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging Committee to offer a forum for pre-nursing and pre-health sciences majors titled, “A Day in the Life of a Multicultural Healthcare Professional.”

Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing was established in 1922 at Indiana University School of Nursing. The six founders chose the name from the Greek words, storgé, thárros and timé, meaning love, courage and honor. The society has more than 100,000 members who reside in more than 100 countries. The honor society was the first organization to fund nursing research and continues throughout its 100-year history to recognize the value of scholarship and excellence in nursing practice. Sigma’s vision is connected, empowered nurses transforming global healthcare. The mission of the organization is to develop nurse leaders anywhere to improve healthcare everywhere. 

About Winston-Salem State University 

  • Motto: Enter To Learn. Depart To Serve.
  • Founded: 1892
  • Location: Winston-Salem, North Carolina
  • Enrollment: 5,004 undergraduate and graduate
  • Curriculum: 50+ programs of study
  • First-year retention: 75% (2022)
  • Four-year completion rate: 32% (undergraduate, 2019)

By the Gerontological Society of America 

Below is "Research Age as a Diversity Factor in Institutions of Higher Education," a featured article from the Gerontological Society of America's Winter 2024 newsletter, "Age Inclusivity in Higher Education," shared with us by our friends in the Stockton Center of Successful Aging (SCOSA), which works to provide programming that centers older adults and their journey of lifelong learning. 

The Harvey A. Friedman Center for Aging at Washington University in St. Louis has been interested in how universities incorporate age into their diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) initiatives. The Center set out to explore this topic as part of its Age-Friendly University (AFU) initiative—WashU for Life—and its work around age inclusivity on college campuses.The Center aimed to describe how the DEI staff of other universities/colleges think about age as a diversity factor and to document strategies being used to address ageism and increase age inclusivity. 

DEI efforts have been growing at institutions across the country over the last several years. At the same time, there has been an expansion of the AFU Global Network and an increase in fostering age-inclusive campuses. We at the Center for Aging were curious about how these two initiatives were (or were not) intersecting at other institutions of higher education. To gather more information about this intersection of age-inclusivity and DEI initiatives, we conducted focus groups and individual interviews with staff of campus-wide DEI offices. 

Forty-two participants from 36 institutions of higher education were represented. We asked questions about how participants thought age fit in the scope of diversity in higher education, the value of DEI efforts in addressing age, and the best strategies for becoming more age inclusive or inspiring and motivating institutions to do something about age as a diversity issue.

The research team used thematic analysis to identify nine key themes that were heard from focus group participants:

  1. Age is a diversity factor, but not a priority for DEI.
  2. Multiple reasons contribute to why age is not a recognized identity factor in DEI efforts such as age is seen as a compliance issue and there is a shortage of resources to attend to all demands.
  3. A generational lens is used to describe the issues, especially conflict.
  4. Intersectionality is an important concept.
  5. Issues related to age vary by the type of institution and the various programs within the institution.
  6. Faculty, staff, and students have different issues related to age such as employees face age discrimination in the workplace.
  7. Ageism is pervasive.
  8. Responsibility for discussions on age and ageism may lie outside DEI.
  9. DEI offices are doing things (current and potential interventions) to address ageism and increase age-inclusivity. Interventions include programming for nontraditionally aged students, Human Resources initiatives, and facilitating intergenerational interactions. 

Overall, we learned from other institutions that, while age is identified as a diversity factor, it is usually not a part of the educational and advocacy efforts of DEI offices. This was not dissimilar to the experiences we were having at our own university. Participants in the study pointed out that ageism remains unnoticed and unchallenged. More research in this area is certainly needed to explore interventions to incorporate age as a diversity factor and to identify which approaches are most acceptable and effective in reducing age stereotypes and bias. The full study, “Age as a Factor in Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Initiatives in Higher Education,” will be published in the Journal of Gerontological Social Work. 

About the Gerontological Society of America 

The society — founded in 1945 — is an organization that is dedicated to learning, promoting the study of and disseminate information about the field of aging. Through their work both domestically and internationally, the society works to foster collaboration among various industries that involve aging, including "behavioral and social scientists, physicians, nurses, biologists, psychologists, social workers, educators, economists, policy experts, practice leaders, those who study the humanities and the arts, and many other scholars and researchers in aging."  

By The Villanova Initiative to Support Inclusiveness and Build Leaders  

Incoming provost, Dr. Michael Palladino, shared the opportunity below to Valerie for the Digest. 

The Villanova Initiative to Support Inclusiveness and Build Leaders (VISIBLE) is proud to present the inaugural Symposium on Leadership and Equity to Advance All Faculty (LEAF) from Tuesday, May 21, to Thursday, May 23, 2024, at The Inn at Villanova.

The LEAF Symposium will feature: 

  • Keynote addresses from nationally-recognized speakers. 
  • Praxis and research-based sessions on improving equity for faculty. 
  • Interactive performances and workshops from DEI-focused theatre troupes. 
  • Opportunities to build formal and informal networks with other attendees. 

Call for Programs

Submissions can include a panel discussion, workshop, demonstration, roundtable discussion, or poster presentation with Lightning Session (5-minute presentation). Content can be scholarly or praxis. Suggested presentation themes include staff and student collaboration; putting initiatives into practice; including "equity" in one's mission or academic narrative; and imagining a new generation of faculty in higher education. Abstracts, rationales, technology requirements and more can be specified in the interest form. 

About The Villanova Initiative to Support Inclusiveness and Build Leaders 

VISIBLE seeks to empower academic leaders across all disciplines to enable a culture of belonging and equity for all faculty through professional development for rising and mid-level academic leaders, sharing inclusive leadership practice, supporting faculty career progression and advocating for systems change for equity. 

By the Gerontological Society of America 

Did you know that Stockton University is a member of the Age-Friendly University Global Network? Our membership status and work by faculty members for the Stockton Center of Successful Aging (SCOSA) was recently recognized in the Advancing Age Inclusivity in Higher Education newsletter, shared below. 

"Professors Karen Rose and David Burdick at AFU partner Stockton University Center on Successful Aging (SCOSA) participated in an event sponsored by the Center for Teaching and Learning Design to let Stockton’s many adjunct instructors know about various programs and services at the university.

"SCOSA shared information about the AFU initiative; how age is an important diversity, equity, and inclusion component; and the various teaching, scholarship, and service resources that SCOSA provides to adjunct faculty wishing to focus aspects of their work on aging. 

"As part of their leadership activities in SCOSA, they are also investigating the potential benefits of having the university designated as an Age Friendly Employer." 

Check out the articles that Karen Rose and David Burdick wrote for previous Digest issues below.

The Ten Priniciples of an Age-Friendly University

Provided by the Age-Friendly University Global Network 

In order to become a member of the network, colleges and universities must embody the following principles. 

  1. To encourage the participation of older adults in all the core activities of the University, including educational and research programs.
  2. To promote personal and career development in the second half of life and to support those who wish to pursue second careers.
  3. To recognize the range of educational needs of older adults (from those who were early school-leavers through to those who wish to pursue Master’s or Ph.D. qualifications).
  4. To promote intergenerational learning in order to facilitate the reciprocal sharing of expertise between learners of all ages.
  5. To widen access to online educational opportunities for older adults to ensure a diversity of routes to participation.
  6. To ensure that the university’s research agenda is informed by the needs of an aging society and to promote public discourse on how higher education can better respond to the varied interests and needs of older adults.
  7. To increase the understanding of students of the longevity dividend and the increasing complexity and richness that aging brings to our society.
  8. To enhance access for older adults to the university’s range of health and wellness programs and its arts and cultural activities.
  9. To engage actively with the university’s own retired community.
  10. To ensure regular dialogue with organizations representing the interests of the aging population. 

About the Gerontological Society of America 

The society — founded in 1945 — is an organization that is dedicated to learning, promoting the study of and disseminate information about the field of aging. Through their work both domestically and internationally, the society works to foster collaboration among various industries that involve aging, including "behavioral and social scientists, physicians, nurses, biologists, psychologists, social workers, educators, economists, policy experts, practice leaders, those who study the humanities and the arts, and many other scholars and researchers in aging." 

By the ADA 504 Act Steering Committee

Below is a video on reasonable accomodation in employment by the Stockton ADA-Rehabilitation Act Steering Committee, which you can find on their resource page. 

About the ADA 504 Steering Committee

The Steering Committee is charged with providing ongoing assistance in coordinating Stockton’s effort to ensure that its (1) living, learning, and working environments are accessible to persons with disabilities and (2) procedures, practices and plans for addressing disability issues are responsive to the current understanding of the ADA and Rehabilitation Act requirements.

By the Office of Equity & Inclusion (OEI) - Loyola University Maryland 

Following an email exchange with Sarah Albertson (William T. Daly School of General Studies) and Heizel Prince (Human Resources), Valerie received a resource page for Loyola University Maryland that discusses best practices for program and event scheduling.

How Loyola schedules events affects climate and relates to our mission. Loyola recommends groups adopt an inclusive approach to scheduling their campus events. That means being mindful of faith traditions and coordinating efforts with other groups so as not to unnecessarily compete or overlap. 

Major Religious Holidays and Celebrations 

A handy interfaith calendar of major holy days and observances. Please be sure to check the calendar before scheduling events to avoid unnecessary conflicts. Also, be sure to check the events calendar to see what other groups have reserved space on or near your desired day. 

Date (2023-24)



Nov. 1

**All Saints Day


Nov. 2

All Souls Day


Dec. 8

**Feast of the Immaculate Conception


Dec. 7


(begins at sundown)


Dec. 15


(ends at sundown)


Dec. 25



Dec. 26


(begins at sundown)

Interfaith African-American

Jan. 1


(ends at sundown)

Interfaith African-American

Holidays indicated in bold with an asterisk (*) require abstinence from all secular activity, i.e., homework, exams, field trips, class meetings, etc. While the other religious holidays may not necessarily require abstinence from all secular activity, some of them may involve fasting, a dietary change, or special celebrations that may occur during the day or the evening.

Holidays indicated with a double asterisk (**) are Holy Days of Obligation for Catholics. In addition, all Sundays are Holy Days of Obligation. When the solemn feasts of Mary, the Mother of God (Jan. 1), the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin (Aug. 15), and All Saints (Nov. 1) fall on a Saturday or Monday, the obligation to attend Mass is abolished. Although the obligation to attend Holy Mass is abolished, parishes continue to observe these holy days by scheduling one or more masses at a convenient time so that those who wish to participate are able to do so. 

About Loyola University Maryland

  • Motto: Strong Truths Well Lived
  • Founded: 1852
  • Traditions: Jesuit, Liberal Arts
  • Location: Baltimore, Maryland
  • Enrollment: 5,238 undergraduate and graduate
  • Curriculum: 40+ programs of study
  • First-year retention: 90%
  • Four-year completion rate: ~80% (undergraduate)

From the John N. Gardner Institute for Excellence in Undergraduate Education  

A call for fellowship nominations have come from the Gardner Institute, a non-profit organization that partners with colleges, universities and other educational entities to strengthen student experience through the development of higher education professionals. 

The Edgerton Fellowship provides educators with a mentor, cohort collaboration, annual participation in a community of practice at the Gardner Institute symposium, a one-time honorarium of $2,500 and opportunities to network and engage with alumni and community networks. 

Nominations will be accepted by institutional presidents, chief academic officers, college deans or their official designee. 

Fellowship Eligibility:

  • An accomplished innovator
  • Passionate about student success
  • Commited to work collaboratively
  • Open to diverse perspectives
  • Deeply knowledgeable in their field
  • Established early-to-mid-career


About the Gardner Institute 

The Institute has a contextualized and comprehensive approach to supporting colleges and universities through services such as guidance from strategists, practical applications with peer educators, redesigning programs to increase graduation rates and more. 

By Jennifer Bonds-Raacke and Billy Korinko - St. Norbert College

The provost and vice president of Academic Affairs (Bonds-Raacke) and director of the Cassandra Voss Center (Korinko) of St. Norbert College in Wisconsin wrote about their on-going diversity and inclusion efforts and provided their framework for creating an inclusive campus. Below is an excerpt of the article, originally published Oct. 14, 2021 and discovered by Valerie Hayes shortly after. 


The need to reevaluate our Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging (DEIB) work at St. Norbert College came into focus as systemic racism, violence and outrage led to devastated cities, communities, families and lives all around us in 2020. For some, these events were an overwhelming representation of their lived experiences while for others, headline after tragic headline revealed our collective failure to advance equitable opportunities for all people.

In response—just as many organizations and communities have done over the past year—we at St. Norbert have begun to take an honest look within and around these issues. In partnership with our newly formed Faculty and Staff Coalition of Color (FSCC), we are asking ourselves tough questions and engaging in dialogue in new ways. We’re challenging our current programs and practices and putting new cultural, strategic, operational, and educational practices in place to help redefine the future of DEIB for our students, faculty, and staff.

As we’re actively exploring these questions, it occurs to us that the answers we’re finding may be all too common in higher education. While our DEIB work at St. Norbert has progressed over the years, it hasn’t been enough: it wasn’t structured for institution-wide success, and it wasn’t creating the outcomes we had intended. We also recognize that many of our colleagues across higher education are in similar situations. It is for this reason that we chose to write this article: in sharing examples of the questions, we are considering and steps we are taking to put DEIB training into practice, we hope to be of service to other institutions that find themselves on a similar journey. 

Establishing Our Framework

Our work to redefine DEIB at St. Norbert College builds upon our founding traditions and decades of tireless work by faculty, staff and students serving as social justice advocates on our campus, many of whom are helping us carry this work forward in new and inspiring ways. We’re using a framework that includes our cultural, strategic, operational, and educational practices and considers how we need to improve each of them in the near- and long-term. The four elements of this framework must evolve and work together as a system to achieve our DEIB mission. 

Cultural Practices 

  • What are the pervasive cultural traditions and practices at your college or university? 
  • Can you assess your cultural practices and their impact on your DEIB landscape? Do your cultural practices help to create safe spaces for DEIB dialogue? 
  • How can you best prepare for and facilitate productive discussions around difficult, emotional topics? 
  • Can you identify DEIB topics that you feel particularly equipped to engage with, and can you identify topics that reflect an area of growth? 

Strategy Practices 

  • Is DEIB part of your college or university's strategic plan? Do you have roles with the right scope, expertise and authority to lead DEIB strategies and programs? 
  • Does your Board of Trustees have the level of transparency, opportunities for education and information they need to effectively do their part? 

Educational Practices

  • Are DEIB experiences formally part of your curriculum? 
  • Can you leverage faculty and staff expertise to provide educational opportunities for others? 
  • Can DEIB work lead to pedagogical innovation? 
  • How can co-curricular support curricular experiences? 

Operational Practices 

  • What insights can you glean from information readily available to you? 
  • What policies or positions will be needed to move operations forward? 
  • How can you work across campus to enhance operations? 

However, when I started reaching out to our FSCC in an authentic and empathetic way, things started coming into focus... I now know that I didn’t have to arrive at our first meeting with a perfect plan in hand to fix it all: it’s something we needed to accomplish and arrive at together."
Jennifer Bonds-Raacke and Billy Korinko, St. Norbert College

As the leader of Academic Affairs, I’m working to understand the concerns, aspirations, and goals of many people and groups at the college: staff, faculty, students, administrators, and board members. I’m focused on bringing people together, creating understanding and a shared lexicon, and aligning strategies and plans to address the four elements of our DEIB framework.

One of our initial challenges has been balancing the need for urgency with the need for thoughtful, integrated strategies for long-term, sustainable improvement. This balance comes from working together at the board, cabinet, division, and department levels toward common goals, and also by involving many of our colleagues to contribute to our immediate objectives.

I personally felt a great deal of urgency to engage with the FSCC and deepen my understanding of our DEIB landscape at the college. But looking back, I spent too much time discerning the situation and trying to figure out “the right way” to get started. I was worried I’d make a mistake or seem unprepared.

However, when I started reaching out to our FSCC in an authentic and empathetic way, things started coming into focus. I accepted that it was okay to be vulnerable, and--being relatively new to St. Norbert—that I’d need to rely on our FSCC members and others to guide me. I now know that I didn’t have to arrive at our first meeting with a perfect plan in hand to fix it all: it’s something we needed to accomplish and arrive at together. 

The remainder of this article is structured according to the four prongs of our DEIB framework: Cultural Practices, Strategy Practices, Educational Practices, and Operational Practices. For each one, I offer some questions for consideration and a description of what St. Norbert has put in place or is working on implementing to help achieve our DEIB goals from lessons we have learned along the way. 

About St. Norbert College

  • Motto: Docere verbo et exemplo, To teach by word and example
  • Founded: 1898
  • Traditions: Catholic, Norbertine, Liberal Arts
  • Location: De Pere, Wisconsin
  • Enrollment: 2,000 undergraduate and graduate
  • Curriculum: 80 programs of study
  • First-year retention: 80%
  • Four-year completion rate: 70%

About Celebrate Diversity

The Committee on Campus Diversity and Inclusive Excellence (CCDIE) welcomes new and returning readers to the latest issue of Celebrate Diversity Digest. We invite you to learn more about issues of campus diversity, equity, inclusion and social justice covered in this newsletter.

The CCDIE includes faculty, staff, students and alumni who contribute to the University’s efforts to support and further these four areas on our campus, as well as the University’s mission to develop engaged and effective citizens with the capacity to adapt to change in a multicultural, interdependent world.

About the Communications Subcommittee

This subcommittee explores best practices of marketing and raising awareness of Stockton’s diversity and inclusion programs and efforts and then implements those practices, where appropriate, in collaboration with University Relations and Marketing.

Communications Subcommittee Members 

  • Valerie Hayes, Chief Officer for Diversity & Inclusion and convener for all subcommittees
  • Stacey Clapp, Director of Strategic Communications, University Relations & Marketing 
  • Loukaia Taylor, '22, Multicultural Communications Specialist, University Relations & Marketing 
  • Kameika Murphy, Associate Professor of Atlantic History, School of Arts & Humanities
  • Esther Lawrence, Assistant Dean of Business, School of Business
  • Seth Richards, Associate Director for the Office of Student Conduct, Student Affairs
  • Jestina Drysdale, Assistant Director for the Office of Student Conduct, Student Affairs
  • Yesenia Pacheco, '22/'23, Coordinator of Student Transition, Access and Retention, Student Affairs
  • Van Nhi Ho, Coordinator of LGBTQ+ Initiatives, Women's Gender & Sexuality Center
  • Ashley Dalisay, '23, Student, Accelerated Bachelor's of Nursing
  • Amira Walker, '23, Student, Business Dual Degree