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Peace flags on the quad

community, equity, and diversity

Diversity is all of us.

Thanks for joining us at
Voices Carry: Embody the Change,
a diversity- and inclusion-related training opportunity addressing issues at URI and beyond. If you missed the event, you can
watch the inspiring keynote talks.
The University of Rhode Island is passionate about promoting a campus culture and community where you are respected and valued for who you are. To succeed and lead in the 21st century world, with its wide diversity of cultures, lifestyles, beliefs, abilities, religions, political systems, and philosophies, we all must develop the ability to communicate, understand, and engage productively with people very different from ourselves. Here, you will feel welcomed, supported, and valued as part of the larger campus community.

three women laughing, at orientation faculty, staff, and students with rainbow neckties smiling students at First Night Peace flags World music dancers students watching music at the coffeehouse URI Multicultural Center entrance group of smiling students woman writing Asian glyphs while man looks on march for equality flags and veterans outside Swan Hall Lynn Baker Dooley greeting students at her home two students with glow sticks three women engaged in conversation stop discrimination flag with rainbow
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To succeed, we must constantly ask how we can do more and do it better; and we must engage the world and its diverse cultures, viewpoints and lifestyles." — President
David Dooley

Thinking BIG about who we are.

We have a long tradition of promoting diversity among our community, often stimulated by student, staff and faculty advocacy and administrative initiative. Perhaps the most significant period of reform at the University has occurred since the late 1960's to present, ensuring equity and fair treatment of its members, diversifying URI's demographic composition, broadening and deepening its curricular offerings, and in promoting a campus culture and community where each of its members is respected and valued for who they are.

Upon his appointment as 11th President of the University of Rhode Island, President David M. Dooley announced his Transformational Goals for the 21st Century. One of the four primary goals is to build a community at the University of Rhode Island that values and embraces equity and diversity.

The Office of Community, Equity, and Diversity also comprises:

In addition to maximizing the effectiveness of these departments, the Chief Diversity Officer -- who is a member of the President's executive team -- is charged with influencing effective policy formation and collaborating with the various Presidential Commissions and divisional, college and departmental diversity committees, ensuring the accomplishment of strategic diversity goals integral to the overall success of the University.

Presidential Diversity Councils and Commissions

  • Equity Council
    The Equity Council is a University-wide advisory and advocacy group for issues of diversity and equity for the entire University community. Its purpose is to provide a forum for University individuals, groups, committees, commissions, and offices that are active in University diversity, community and equity issues and to make recommendations to the President and the Chief Diversity Officer. The chairpersons of each of the Presidential diversity commissions and other university diversity committees are represented on the Equity Council.

    Contact: Lynne Derbyshire or Michelle Fontes-Barros
  • President's Commission on the Status of Students, Staff, and Faculty of Color
    The President's Commission on Faculty, Staff, and Students of Color will report and make recommendations to the President and Chief Diversity Officer, acting as a catalyst and advocate in diversifying and strengthening the University of Rhode Island as a university community that promotes racial equity, diversity and inclusion in all aspects of university life. The Commission will: research, monitor, and report on the status of underrepresented racial and ethnic groups on campus, and of institutional racial diversity initiatives; identify major needs and topics of concern; propose policies and programs to address these needs and concerns, and to promote, maintain and publicize strategic focus on these issues; collaborate with campus organizations with complementary goals and objectives; monitor the effectiveness of any proposed policies and initiatives upon implementation.

    Contact: Katrina Dorsey
  • President's Commission on LGBTQ
    The President's Commission for LGBTQ works collaboratively to ensure that LGBTQ issues concerning discrimination, harassment, and safety of LGBTQ students, faculty and staff are addressed. The Commission will research, monitor, and report on the status of the LGBTQ community on campus and of institutional initiatives; identify major needs and topics of concern; propose policies and programs to address these needs and concerns, collaborate with campus organizations with complementary goals and objectives; monitor the effectiveness of any proposed policies and initiatives upon implementation; and regularly communicate the progress of these efforts to the university and surrounding community. The President's Commission on LGBTQ will report and make recommendations to the President and Chief Diversity Officer.

    Contact: Annemarie Vaccaro and Annie Kosar
  • President's Commission on the Status of Women
    The President's Commission on the Status of Women promotes an environment free of gender-based discrimination by establishing an agenda around issues that concern women at the university and recommending to the President and Chief Diversity Officer strategies to enhance or change existing policies and programs at URI. To accomplish its mission, the Commission shall work with members of the university community and in collaboration with organizations and structures within the University of Rhode Island.

    Contact: Anne Seitsinger and Linda Lyons

The Chief Diversity Officer communicates and collaborates with these committees as liaison for the President to ensure that all initiatives undertaken serve the overall accomplishment of strategic university diversity goals.