The Presidents Commission on the Status of Minorities (PCSM)
presented its diversity study proposal to President Bill Chace at
its Feb. 25 meeting.
The proposal, which has been a year in the making, looks to examine
the Universitys diversity climate and make recommendations
for improving and sustaining diversity in Emorys academic
and social environments.
"A diversity program will ask hard questions about what we
mean by education, how we teach, which people should be included
as students and teachers, and what ultimately we are accomplishing
in our colleges and universities," the proposal reads.
Among those questions asked are:
Is Emorys campus diverse?
Do University policies embrace diversity?
Are the Presidents Commissions effective in advising
and informing on diversity issues?
Do current administrative structures and policies enhance
or inhibit diversity?
Can the Equal Opportunity Programs (EOP) Office be better
positioned and empowered to support the goals of diversitybeyond
its current responsibilities?
How is Emorys commitment to diversity reflected in
its partnerships and collaborations in the Atlanta community?
The proposal recommends the creation of a committee of faculty,
students, staff and administrators, appointed by the president,
to oversee the diversity study. Members of the committee should
reflect the range of diversity in our community, the proposal
states. Deans, department chairs and supervisors must allow
participants to dedicate an identifiable portion of their Emory
time to this project.
Chace said he received the proposal just prior to the meeting and
had not thoroughly examined it. He said he was concerned that PCSM
members dont see their role as an effective advisory group.
If PCSM does believe this, he said, why would it charge another
group with the study?
Im committed to diversity, Chace said, but admitted
he was worried the proposed task at hand would prove mammoth. He
added that he will take a closer look at the proposal.
Chair Brenda Seiton said the group must decide how to re-approach
the study, based on Chaces comments.
Members agreed it was a large proposal and it needed to be approached
systematically, as suggested by Tariq Shakoor.
A main concern of members was they didnt want the studys
findings to be shelved. Nagueyalti Warren said Chace could help
by providing people with research expertise. It doesnt
mean were not doing [the study]; it means we need other help,
Vice President for Equal Opportunity Programs Bob Etheridge supported
Shakoors suggestions and said the commission could consider
delegating its research to doctoral students whose interests lie
in minorities and higher education.
By the end of the meeting, the group agreed to retool its proposal
In other business, Seiton said Warren will be the PCSMs new
chair. New member recruitment will begin next month, with openings
for faculty, staff and students. Ann Starks said letters had been
mailed to Emorys minority faculty regarding the PCSMs
monetary awards for professional development.
PCSMs next meeting is Tuesday, March 26, in 400 Administration
at 3 p.m.
you have a question or concern for PCSM, e-mail Brenda Seiton at