Appendix C - Best Practices
Campus Diversity Plan: A Blueprint for Action
The following programs represent some of CU-Boulder's "Best Practices" for enhancing diversity within the campus community. For students, these programs offer academic support, financial support, a cohort experience, faculty/staff mentoring, peer support, a place to work and study together, and a genuine sense of community on campus. Faculty and staff programs offer broadened opportunities for hiring, promoting, tenuring, and professional development.
Academic Access Institute
The Academic Access Institute provides academic support for all students on campus, with a particular focus on students of color. In coordination with the College of Arts and Sciences, AAI offers classes that provide an in-depth small-group experience. Currently, AAI serves students only during their freshman year.
Coordinating Council and Network
The campus-wide Coordinating Council and Network, recently formed under the Cultural Unity Student Center, seeks to coordinate an active network of resources readily available to meet the needs of students of color. The staff meet regularly to develop strategies for helping students persist academically, make the necessary cultural and social adjustments on a predominantly white campus, and develop effective skills for personal and professional development.
The program is developing a database that will allow for more individualized contact with students of color. These efforts are carried out in cooperation with the new Academic Advising Structure in Arts and Sciences. Outreach activities in coordination with the Admissions Office are designed to contribute to a greater sense of community and support for students and communities of color.
Disability Services Center
The Disability Services Center provides support and advocacy to students with disabilities, including developing accommodation plans, assisting with academic advising, providing community and university referrals and developing compensatory strategies. The center provides auxiliary aids and services to about 400 students; each Disability Specialist handles a caseload of more than 40 students, averaging about 30 contact hours with students per week. The center also provides technical assistance to faculty, information to campus departments, assistive technology services, and screening for learning disabilities, among other activities.
Employee Development Department
The Employee Development Department in Human Resources offers training and education to all staff on a variety of diversity issues. Session topics include cultural assessment, team-building, sexual harassment awareness, conflict training and diversity skills for the workplace.
The IMPART Program (Implementation of Multicultural Perspectives and Approaches in Research and Teaching) helps develop a campus environment that supports and ecnourages gender, ethnic and cultural diversity in scholarly work and teaching. The program supports activities such as: (1) fellowships for faculty to engage in research or scholarly activities that have a multicultural focus; (2) awards to academic units to support invitations of women and multiethnic scholars to visit campus; (3) awards to support colloquia, conferences or workshops with academic and multicultural themes; (4) awards to primary units in support of recruitment activities aimed at enhancing diversity; (5) awards for research/scholarly proposals by junior faculty; and (6) fellowships for faculty to expand undergraduate curriculum in the area of ethnic and gender diversity.
The Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Program helps eligible undergraduate students prepare to enroll in graduate programs through planned sequences of academic activities. Participants must be low-income, first-generation college students, and/or from groups underrepresented in graduate education.
The program provides services to about 37 students per year. Four 1998 graduates of the program have entered or been accepted to graduate school. One McNair student graduated summa cum laude, two magna cum laude. Two undergraduate participants presented papers at national conferences. One program graduate completed her master's degree at the University of Texas at Austin.
Minority Arts and Sciences Program (MASP)
The Minority Arts and Sciences Program (MASP) offers academic and financial support, as well as a supportive community, for a selected number of matriculated students in the College of Arts and Sciences. These programs have demonstrated strong retention and graduation rates for students of color. Activities include the Summer Bridge Program, a five-week intensive academic residential program that prepares incoming students for their first year of college.
Also, MASP offers the CARE Center (Collaborating and Reaching Excellence) which provides a supportive environment to study and network together while building a culture of achievement. MASP also sponsors Academic Honors Co-Seminars that work to enhance the learning experience. Participants meet twice weekly with graduate assistants to work collaboratively on course problems. In addition, MASP offers the Undergraduate Research Assistance Program (URAP) to participants who have little or no experience in laboratory research. Scholars work on a research project with the guidance of a faculty sponsor.
Second-fall retention of MASP scholars in 1998-99 was 100%; average retention since 1993 is 92%. MASP graduated its first class in 1997 and 80% of those students graduated with degrees in the sciences.
Multicultural Development Team
The Multicultural Development Team is comprised of a professional, diverse team of individuals experienced in educating the community about issues related to culture, ethnicity, class, disability, age, gender, sexual orientation and race. The team helps constituencies of the Boulder campus discover ways to respond positively and effectively to the diversity of an educational community.
The PreCollegiate Program, which operates on the CU campuses at Boulder, Colorado Springs and Denver, provides academic and financial support and college orientation for students in 9th through 12th grades. The program offers "Saturday academies" for college orientation and preparation, a summer institute focused on college-level coursework for incoming freshmen, and a "Bridge" program in Farrand Hall for students in their freshman year.
Between 1984 and 1997, 520 students participated in the Boulder campus program. Of those 520 students, 95% applied to attend CU-Boulder and 91% were admitted. A total of 287 students (or 64%) matriculated to CU-Boulder.
During the 1997-98 academic year, the PreCollegiate Program began its expansion into the 6-8th grades and will continue to expand these efforts in coming years.
Special Opportunities Program
The Faculty Special Opportunities Program, offered through the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, supports efforts by individual schools, colleges and departments to recruit and hire a more diverse faculty. Funding is provided to help attract outstanding faculty from a wide variety of backgrounds.
Student Academic Services Center
The Student Academic Services Center (SASC) provides comprehensive consultation, content- area tutoring and academic skills training, alternative core-curriculum courses, supplemental instruction in "gateway" courses and referral services to students who need academic support. It also provides assistance for students as they progress therough their undergraduate degrees, including customized tutorial support, study sessions in difficult courses, coursework tailored for students who speak English as a second language, etc. SASC is the umbrella for various programs on campus providing a comprehensive and coordinated approach to student academic services.
Success in Engineering through Excellence and Diversity (SEED)
Formerly called the Minority Engineering Program, SEED works to identify underrepresented minority students with engineering aptitude, recruit minority students into engineering, help them succeed in earning their degrees and help ensure their success in the engineering profession. On average, 70 percent of SEED students participate in summer internships annually.
In the fall 1998, there were 219 underrepresented minority students enrolled in the college of Engineering with a total of 162 participating in SEED (MEP) activities. A total of 23 SEED students graduated during the 1997-98 academic year. Academic performance, retention and graduation rates of SEED students are comparable to the College as a whole. In 1997-98, 83% of SEED freshmen registered for their second fall semester, nearly double the national average for underrepresented minorities in engineering.
Summer Multicultural Access to Research Training (SMART)
The Summer Multicultural Access to Research Training (SMART) program is the central initiative of the Graduate School to increase diversity in graduate programs and to enhance awarenss of minority issues on a graduate level.
SMART funds undergraduate research activities during a 10-week summer session aimed at minority students. SMART serves as a resource for minority students in many summer internship programs on campus. Participants conduct individually designed research projects at CU-Boulder. CU-Boulder faculty volunteer as mentors to SMART participants. Other activities include workshops on technical writing and oral communication; weekly informal evening seminars, and seminars on applying to graduate school.
Women in Engineering Program (WIEP)
The Women in Engineering Program (WIEP) is designed to improve diversity in engineering. The program hosts several Career Days for female high school students and their parents, teachers and counselors. Students learn about the various areas of engineering and get a sampling of what it's like to be an engineering student at CU-Boulder.
WIEP provides scholarships and other services designed to help students succeed in engineering, including academic and personal counseling, career information and advising, and a resource center.
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