AWARENESS. ACCEPTANCE. RESPECT.
It's more than a campaign. It's a way of life at UWF.
Diversity at the University of West Florida
At the University of West Florida we define diversity as accepting, valuing and celebrating the unique characteristics of each member of our community as well as the commonalities we share. As an educational institution we recognize the considerable benefits emanating from the diverse human mosaic that is our university. It is our vision to be an intellectual and cultural center that engages our students, faculty, staff and community partners in an ongoing and dynamic process that prepares each of us to be culturally competent in an ever-changing multicultural world.
At the University of West Florida, our diversity efforts are built upon a strong foundation of three guiding principles:
Acceptance. Awareness. Respect.
We encourage members of our campus community to become active participants in this process in four action-oriented ways:
- Get Empowered - A commitment to diversity and inclusion starts with enabling community members with policies and information and rewarding them for work that they do relative to diversity and inclusion.
- Get Educated - As an institution of higher education, UWF offers many credit-bearing courses and trainings that educate students about the culture, language and histories of a variety of ethnic groups. The University also mandates training every two years for all faculty and staff related to discrimination and harassment.
- Get Involved - One way to learn more about others who are different from you is to participate in a myriad of events, student organizations and committees offered by UWF on an annual basis.
- Get Help -A college environment is a place for peaceful discourse around topics that can be controversial and political charged. UWF embraces the discourse as a hallmark of a robust academic learning environment.
President's Council on Diversity and Inclusion
In 2012 President Judith Bense created The President’s Council on Diversity and Inclusion. The role of the council is to serve as advisors to the President and the administration of The University of West Florida on matters related to diversity and inclusion. The Council convened for their first meeting September 19, 2012. Dr. Kevin Bailey, Vice President for Student Affairs led the charge.
In September 2013 Dr. Kim M. LeDuff was hired as Chief Diversity Officer/Associate Vice Provost for Equity, Diversity and International Affairs. The Chief Diversity Officer met with the President’s Council for Diversity and Inclusion for the first time October 16, 2013. In that meeting the Council was divided into four subcommittees: Students, Faculty, Staff and Community. Each subcommittee closely examined diversity needs in each area and reported their findings back to the Council-at-large. Subcommittees were also encouraged to invite others who might have a vested interest in their area to participate in the meetings and discussions leading up to the report.
The role of the council is to serve as advisors to the President and the administration of The University of West Florida on matters related to diversity and inclusion.