On October 29, Walsh University will be represented by two of the six presenters at the 2020 Ohio Diversity in Action Roundtable Summit hosted by the Ohio Diversity Council. This statewide initiative will  bring together six leaders from diverse backgrounds from all over Ohio to share their personal stories and experiences that relate to facing adversity in society.

The Ohio Diversity in Action Roundtable aims to not only create awareness about the impact a non-inclusive environment can have on individuals, but also some of the ways in which organizations and individuals can work together to promote the importance of diversity and inclusion in the workplace and community. Participating in this year’s Summit will be Walsh Director of Multicultural Affairs Carrilyn Long will share her perspective on “Being an African American Female in Leadership: Know your Purpose.” In addition, alumnus Andre Lessears ’07 will provide insight and share his expertise as the Director of Diversity & Inclusion for Cleveland Clinic Akron General.

Engagement initiatives on campus have recently included focus group discussions with faculty, staff and students, to explore issues of racism and human dignity, led by facilitators, Director of Multicultural Affairs, Carrilyn Long and Professor of Sociology, Dr. Michelle Bemiller. The most recent focus groups and prior informal campus meetings with various student groups to discuss this topic, many great ideas have been offered and several emerging themes have been identified.

The consistent themes relate to the collective desire for:

  • Increased campus wide awareness and education opportunities on these issuesIncreased messaging by the university
  • Logo/Visuals that support our efforts against racism
  • Intentional opportunities to continue the dialogue/conversation on these issues
  • Increased involvement of minority students, faculty, staff and alumni

Although we expect this to be a long term process of discovery, education, healing, and renewal, the University would like to take immediate steps as a result of the input we’ve received to date and launch the Walsh University Stands United Against Racism commitment. Verbally committing ourselves to this cause reinforced by a visual that reminds us of our stance is a critical component of our efforts. Based on student input, the below design will be placed on posters throughout campus as well as t-shirts that will be available in the coming weeks for students, faculty, and staff. Additionally, this November we will be organizing a unified showing of support for this cause by offering a day of prayer and candlelight vigil open to all of Cav Nation. Details are forth coming.