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Laurier to increase faculty diversity with Inclusive Excellence initiative

Laurier is taking a significant step toward Indigenization, reconciliation and equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI) by hiring no less than six new Indigenous faculty members and six Black faculty members.

Under the “Inclusive Excellence” cohort hiring initiative, the university will recruit no less than 12 tenured and tenure-track faculty appointments for emerging and established Black and Indigenous scholars within any of the university’s faculties.

“The collaborative effort and approach that made this initiative possible is something to be celebrated,” said Barrington Walker, associate vice-president: equity, diversity and inclusion. “I’m proud of the work that we’re doing and the plans we continue to drive forward. We remain committed to ensuring an inclusive experience for Laurier students, faculty and staff alike.”

Faculty scholarship as part of the Inclusive Excellence initiative will be aligned with the six themes in Laurier’s Strategic Research Plan: environments and sustainability; psychological and social determinants of health and well-being; governance and policy; Indigeneity, decolonization, equity, diversity and inclusion; business, technology and innovation; and society, culture and community.

Barrington Walker

“We remain committed to ensuring an inclusive experience for Laurier students, faculty and staff alike.”

Barrington Walker, associate vice-president: equity, diversity and inclusion

The initiative aligns with the inclusive community and Indigeneity themes in the Laurier Strategy and is part of the university’s broader efforts to advance strategic academic and research goals and enhance academic excellence and student experience.

The Inclusive Excellence initiative is one of a series of policy changes and initiatives to address systemic racism outlined in Laurier’s Equity, Diversity and Inclusion and Indigeneity Action Plan. The hiring initiative was developed in collaboration with the Wilfrid Laurier University Faculty Association.

The initiative will further Laurier’s Indigenization strategy, which will be developed by the university’s associate vice-president: Indigenous Initiatives, Darren Thomas. In addition to hiring new Indigenous faculty, Indigenous forms of teaching, research and scholarship will also be included in Laurier’s tenure and promotion criteria, including research and preservation of knowledge consistent with Indigenous traditional practices.

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