Published: May 24, 2023

Editor’s note: This is part of a series of updates on campuswide diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives that will continue throughout the year.

Campus leaders encourage students, staff and faculty to reflect on the history and significance of Juneteenth, traditionally celebrated on June 19. Also, a search is underway for an assistant vice chancellor for Native American affairs. Read about these updates and more.

In this issue

Employees reminded to use floating Juneteenth holiday before June 30

Campus managers are encouraging CU Boulder employees to use the floating Juneteenth holiday for 2023 before it expires on June 30.

Juneteenth, traditionally celebrated on June 19, marks the date in 1865 when the Union Army arrived in Texas—the last state in the Confederacy with institutional slavery—to proclaim freedom for enslaved Black and African Americans more than two years after President Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation.

Juneteenth became an official state holiday in Colorado last year.

On June 19 this year, CU Boulder will remain open in alignment with the 2023 academic calendar and will be open for classes and other university business. However, campus leaders encourage students, staff and faculty to reflect on the history and significance of the holiday and avoid scheduling other major campus events on Juneteenth.

Next week, the campus community will receive more information about opportunities to observe Juneteenth at events across the Boulder region.

Starting next year, CU Boulder will observe Juneteenth as a fixed holiday rather than a floating holiday and along with other public colleges, schools and offices will close in accordance with state guidelines.

Search underway for assistant vice chancellor for Native American affairs

A newly created university leadership position will work collaboratively with Colorado tribal communities to support the success of Native American and Indigenous students at CU Boulder.

Earlier this month, Chancellor Phil DiStefano announced the campus would launch a national search for an associate vice chancellor for Native American affairs. The search to fill this leadership position is part of the university’s efforts to enroll, sustain and graduate more Native American and Indigenous students.

The new associate vice chancellor will be part of the university’s Office of Government and Community Engagement, whose employees report to the chancellor. The new campus leader will liaise with tribal governments and communities around Colorado and the wider region, interfacing with state and federal entities that have roles in tribal affairs and higher education, the chancellor said.

Striving to improve student, staff and faculty success and well-being

Thirty-six campus academic and administrative planning units will continue their work to develop action plans to improve student, staff and faculty outcomes in their respective areas. The broad intent of the plans is to set specific goals for eliminating barriers that disproportionately affect people with minoritized identities, impacting their achievement, safety and sense of community at CU Boulder.

Unit leaders from colleges, schools, programs and administrative offices are working closely with staff consultants from the Office of the Senior Vice Chancellor for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion to implement the plans during the 2023–24 academic year.

To date, more than two dozen units have submitted plans focused on specific actions guided by five overarching goals to achieve desired outcomes with the goal of addressing challenges that are hindering the campus’s ability to sustain a more inclusive community.

Campus units began the action planning process in spring 2022, tapping into the results of the 2021 Campus Culture Survey and other resources to develop unique plans. The campus community and the public are encouraged to track the progress CU Boulder is making with these efforts by visiting the Action Planning Status webpage.

After the units have implemented their plans, assessment information will also be posted on this webpage, giving the campus insight into unit success stories, outcomes and where plans need to be improved.

UndocuAlly sessions scheduled for summer 

The Center for Inclusion and Social Change has announced its summer schedule of UndocuAlly sessions for faculty and staff. The two-hour sessions are also open to students with administrative, professional or teaching roles on campus.

Intended to help the campus better support undocumented students and to create a more welcoming campus environment, the sessions will increase participants’ understanding of relevant terminology and the makeup of the undocumented community.

Participants will also learn more about the history of immigration to the United States; about the federal Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Colorado’s Advancing Students for a Stronger Economy Tomorrow (ASSET) programs and how they impact CU Boulder students; and about the challenges, opportunities and campus resources for undocumented students.

The schedule for summer sessions is:

In case you missed it

Sustaining our practice of inclusion

  • Campus efforts and investments to address pressing and painful inequities at CU Boulder are only a beginning.
  • Creating a culture of belonging will take each member of our community practicing sustained personal work to truly embrace and support diverse perspectives and intersectional identities in our community.
  • Chancellor Philip DiStefano and other campus leaders urge every member of our community to join in learning more about equity, inclusion, belonging and anti-racism and to work continuously together to address these challenges more actively and in ways that can help authentically transform our campus culture.

Campus resources