DEI Committee Charge
Diversity is a core value of Western Colorado University. All of us, including the Board of Trustees have endorsed the Statement on Diversity and Inclusion to support and advance campus diversity. Our Statement reads:
“Western Colorado University takes a firm and unyielding stance in support of diversity, inclusivity, scientific inquiry and creative expression. We believe these principles are necessary for the free and open inquiry that defines our role as a public institution in a democratic society. We believe that these principles are a moral imperative requiring constant vigilance and a firm stance against actions motivated by hate or intimidation. The University welcomes people of color, people with disabilities, people of all genders and orientations, people of all religious preferences, immigrants and refugees regardless of national origin or ethnicity and other underrepresented communities regardless of socioeconomic class. We actively seek to build a civil and respectful culture which affirms these principles in all that we do.”
Events surrounding us continue to serve as reminders that we should maintain our vigilance of our nation’s foundational commitment to human equality and unalienable rights. Like our nation’s Constitution which seeks equal protection of the laws for all, we as stewards of Western’s mission have the responsibility of bringing and creating opportunities for scholarship and teaching to all qualified faculty and staff, and all aspiring students. We must continue to push ourselves to uphold the suite of ideals that define our campus community.
Western Colorado University’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusivity (DEI) Committee is charged with developing recommendations for improving the University’s policies and practices regarding diversity, equity, and inclusion on campus, including but not limited to, all university operations from marketing, student recruitment, faculty hires, programming, curriculum, institutional culture, and services. Further, the DEI Committee will develop the same for our efforts of attracting and hosting international faculty, students, and scholars. The DEI Committee will also work alongside, and consult with, each of the strategic planning committees to ensure each integrates attainable, actionable, relevant, specific, and temporally appropriate goals into their respective sections of Western’s Strategic Plan. The DEI Committee will:
- Foster partnerships with experts and practitioners to help Western fully implement actions and develop the culture which supports our Statement on Diversity and Inclusion;
- Develop and track meaningful metrics and create benchmarks to fully embody the principles in Western’s Statement of Diversity and Inclusion;
- Identify and recommend policy changes and organizational actions which promote equity and inclusivity and increase diversity of our students, faculty and staff;
- Increase awareness of issues relating to diversity, equity and inclusion across campus to all.
The DEI Committee is composed of the following members:
- Cheyenne Terry, M.S., Director of the Center for Dis/Ability and Accommodations – Chair
- Kanae Haneishi, Ed.D., Assistant Professor of Exercise and Sport Science – Vice-Chair
- Marita Whalen, Ed.S., M.Ed., Equal Opportunity Officer – Secretary
- Gary Pierson, M.A., Dean of Students, Vice President for Student Affairs – ex-officio
- Steven D. Parker, Vice President for Inclusivity – ex-officio
- Jessica Young, Ph.D., Provost – ex-officio
- Brayden Kammers, student representative
- Casey Richardson, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Education
- CMarie Fuhrman, MFA, Lecturer in Creative Writing
- McKenzie Mathewson, M.S., Assistant Director for Health and Wellness
- Steven Cole Hughes, MFA, Director of Theatre and Assistant Professor of Theatre
- Brian Bernhardt, Ph.D., Professor of Politics and Government
- Miriam Olvera, Program Coordinator, Multicultural Affairs
- Amanda Raso, Soccer Coach
Take the Next Step
Apply to Western
We understand that applying to a university can be daunting, which is why we make our admission process as simple and straightforward as possible. Learn more about applying to your program of choice at Western.
The best way to find out what makes Western such a special place is to experience it for yourself. Our student-led tours give you an insider’s perspective on everything from academics to student life.
We keep the Mountaineer spirit going strong within our alumni community. Whether getting together with friends at an annual event, making a donation or mentoring a student, graduates continue to play an important role in the Western community.