Commitment to Diversity

As a nation, we must focus on creating a more perfect union through the development of a better understanding of the diverse nature of our society. This premise lies at the heart of a joint university/community effort to recognize the human diversity that is our strength in the Mahoning Valley.

Colleges and universities nationwide face challenges just as Youngstown State University in the area of diversity . While the University of Michigan is often cited as one of the few exceptions, the record of most colleges and universities on diversity is poor. Despite efforts in recent years, YSU has yet to fully embrace the meaning of diversity both in its campus environment and in its relationship with the community. Progress has been made in terms of process and procedures, but still there is much to be accomplished. The University must play a pivotal role, too, if the community is to reach its fullest potential as a diverse society. Collaborative efforts are needed to create a sense of community where all citizens are equally valued and accepted.

As people interact with one another, they develop and exchange a diverse set of identities. These identities---including, among others, gender, race, ethnicity, culture, sexual orientation, religion, varying physical and mental abilities, class, age, education, profession, and regional identity---carry socially constructed meaning and value. Each of us brings multiple identities to the organizations and communities of which we are a part, forming a mosaic that allow us to retain our individuality while contributing to collective purposes and achievements.

The health and well being of any society depends on its members appreciating the entire mosaic of which they are a part. We need to actively oppose all discriminatory practices and to develop and support organizations that reflect and empower diverse perspectives.

YSU seeks to work in collaboration with the larger community of which it is a part to provide leadership in the attainment of these goals and to foster educational, economic, and social opportunity for all citizens of our community.