Diversity Communications & Updates

Champlain College is committed to fostering a diverse and inclusive community for all of our students, faculty, staff and local community. While we are aware the serious exploration of issues surrounding diversity and inclusion may generate conflict or tension, we see this as an opportunity for growth. We embrace this discomfort and believe it will help our organization to become stronger and our students to become effective professionals, skilled practitioners and engaged global citizens.

This page is devoted to sharing official communications about diversity and inclusion and updates on the many related programs taking place on our campus. We hope you will review these materials, actively participate in discussions and share your viewpoints.


These documents are emails and other official communications sent to the Champlain College community.

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TO: All faculty, staff and Burlington-based students
FROM: Dr. Angela Batista
SUBJECT: Important Message - Bias Incidents Follow-up and Pre Spring Break Reminders

March 8, 2018

Dear Members of the Champlain Community:

Over the last couple of weeks, we have continued to investigate and follow up on the recent bias incidents reported at our Burlington campus.

At this time, we have no additional information to report regarding the white nationalist posters found on our Burlington campus and no new reports of posters have been received. We continue to monitor the situation, support local law enforcement in their investigation and will provide updates to the campus community upon receipt of new information.

As I mentioned in my February 26 communication to Burlington-based students, faculty and staff, our investigation into a social media posting of a picture in digital black face is active and ongoing.

When there are matters related to alleged incidents of bias or sexual violence, the College follows policies and process outlined in detail in the College Catalog. These processes are designed to ensure safety for all involved, as well as to carry out an equitable and accountable investigation and adjudication process.   

Generally, the College does not comment on the outcomes of individual judicial cases.  This practice is not intended to disrupt transparent communications with the Champlain community, but rather to protect the privacy of all those involved in the investigation and to follow federal compliance regulations.

I want to reassure the community that if/when reports are received, we follow our process as outlined and take appropriate actions, which can range from information gathering and investigation to adjudication. When individuals are found responsible for violating college policy, as a result of an investigation and  established disciplinary processes, they may face a range of sanctions.

All members of our community are encouraged to continue to report similar incidents by using the online Bias Incident Report Form or by calling Campus Public Safety at (802)-865-6465.

Additionally, we have become aware of ongoing and challenging conversations among our students on social media focusing on race, identity and privilege. We support our students' efforts to interact and engage with each other on these issues wherever it is productive to do so. I strongly encourage all participants to uphold the principles and values outlined in both the Colleges' Diversity and  Freedom of Expression statements as they continue to engage with each other. Words and all forms of language matter and these conversations are by nature uncomfortable and complex. It is important to be mindful that whether intended or not, that the language we use can negatively impact others and our community in general.

I deeply believe that in order to build a stronger and more inclusive community, we must learn to sit in discomfort together and continue to engage and practice. To that end, I invite members of our Burlington campus to continue the conversation we started at recent student and faculty and staff gatherings. An email invitation will be sent following spring break, but please hold Monday, March 26, from 5-6:30 p.m. on your calendar, so you can participate in this ongoing and critical community discussion. In addition to our campus-based conversations, we are also committed to continuing to explore new ways to engage with students,  faculty and staff who are part of our our online programs and international campuses.

A couple of reminders about ongoing communication:

  • You can access regular updates and all diversity related communication on the diversity-specific communication page.
  • Follow the Office of Diversity and Inclusion on social media to receive regular updates.  You can follow the office on the Facebook page and via Twitter @ChamplainODI.
  • Please feel free to keep sending your questions and ideas to diversity@champlain.edu and to reach out for resources as needed.

As students prepare to head out for spring break, I hope each of you will take some time to reflect on your own values and how you can positively engage and contribute to this ongoing conversation, as well as taking time to rest and recharge. I look forward to seeing everyone after the break as we continue to work together  to build a stronger and more inclusive Champlain community.


Angela Batista
Vice President of Student Affairs and Institutional Diversity and Inclusion

Link to this FAQ

TO: All full time and part time faculty, staff and students
FROM: Don Laackman
SUBJECT: Message from the President - Response to our Students

March 5, 2018

Dear Champlain Community members,

As many of you know, last Wednesday, students of color organized and held a two-hour Black History Month Walkout on the Rozendaal courtyard.

While I was not able to be there in person, since my return many of you have shared how inspiring and meaningful this event was for our students and campus community. Our students exhibited leadership and bravery in sharing their perspectives and requests. Members of our community, in turn, showed up, listened and offered comments of support.

At the event, students shared a list of demands for Champlain, including requesting action to enhance the diversity and inclusivity of our community and the safety of our students. For those not in attendance, list of student demands is listed below under "Student Diversity & Inclusion Demands."

Here are a few developments that have taken place since the walkout:

  • On Thursday, Laurie Quinn (Provost and Senior Vice President for Academics), Angela Batista (Vice President of Student Affairs and Institutional Diversity and Inclusion) and I met with student organizers of the walkout. Students reviewed their list of demands and some additional points they have collected and reflected on since the walkout. We had a productive and respectful dialogue. I agreed to circle back with student organizers after spring break to discuss next steps. We will update the college community as our discussions continue.
  • The walkout prompted conversations among faculty, staff and students.
  • Core faculty members have shared their own response in an open letter to students, which can be read here.
  • We have created a new diversity specific communication page on the Champlain website that is to serve as a central location for updates and communications regarding campus-wide progress on diversity and inclusion. We want to ensure everyone in our campus community can access this information and contribute to our progress and I encourage you to check this page regularly.
  • Students have asked that we share information through social media in addition to email. We will use the Office of Diversity and Inclusion social media accounts to do so. You can follow the office on the Facebook page and via Twitter @ChamplainODI.

Wednesday's walkout marks an important moment for the Champlain community. This student-led walkout highlighted the work that we need to do. The walkout also showcased the best of Champlain — our students' courage and leadership, the supportive relationships we have in our community, and our willingness to continue to learn and change in response to student voices.

I ask that we continue to listen to our students' voices as they share their experiences and perspectives. We know that there are more stories that were not shared on Wednesday, and we should foster an environment where more of our students are comfortable giving voice to their issues. I look forward to partnering with you on creating and sustaining a more inclusive, caring and safe campus environment. We have a solid foundation to build on. Together, we will make a stronger Champlain.


Donald J. Laackman
President, Champlain College

Link to this FAQ


An Open Letter to the Organizers and Participants of the February 28th Walkout Event

The Walkout on February 28th was inspiring. The messages offered by the students were heartfelt and intensely important, and responding to them is vital for our community.

As such, we would like the organizers, participants, and attendees at the walk out to know this: you've been heard.

We understand that you've been hurt; made to feel invisible; forced into representational roles you didn't want; had your very family history and heritage disparaged. We heard the pain, and in the face of that, feel compelled to act.

The Core was mentioned multiple times as a place where conversations about race and identity had been handled poorly. Those difficult conversations about race, class, and gender occur in the Core as much or more than any other division on campus. We recognize that we have a responsibility — a moral obligation — to work towards honoring students of color and your experiences in the classroom.

Our message to you is twofold:

First, thank you for having the courage to stand up and fight for your education, for insisting that students of color and individuals within the LGBTQIA+ community are recognized and treated with dignity, both in the classroom and on campus.

Secondly, we know that there is clearly work to be done. We intend to meet your demand; "continue the conversation." We will be addressing your comments and concerns at an upcoming Division Meeting.

Again, there is much work to be done — we intend to start immediately.


Erik Shonstrom, Mike Kelly, Kristin Novotny, Alice Neiley, Dave Mills, Patricia DeRocher, Faith Yacubian, David Rous, Rowshan Nemazee, Mike Lange, Marlee Ford, Katheryn Wright, Jonathan Auyer, Kristin Wolf, Cyndi Brandenburg, Sanford Zale, Lionel Beasley, Elizabeth Allen-Pennebaker, Kelly Thomas, Erik Kaarla, Miriam Horne, Signe Daly, Craig Pepin, Chuck Bashaw, Erik Esckilson, Christine Brooks, Kerry Noonan, Veruska Cantelli, Flavio Rizzo, Ciaran Buckley, Joanne Farrell
*there are others in the Core faculty that support this message; some were not able to check email due to work/life/travel responsibilities prior to the publication of this letter.


Link to this FAQ


We DEMAND Extensive Professional Development training on diversity that is mandatory for ALL faculty. Admin should hold them to a higher standard.

We DEMAND the college should hold students accountable on social media  for anything that can damage the Champlain community and take action when students feel threatened, targeted, or uncomfortable. Bias incident reports about social media sites should be taken seriously.

We DEMAND admin being open to review/revise IDEA surveys and allow a category about diversity and how the professor handles topics about race, ethnicity, nationality, etc.

We DEMAND there should be a diversity training similar to safe zone training offered for all student leaders and students who would like to learn how to handle diverse situations or learn more about intersectionality without being ignorant.

We DEMAND that admin make private conversations in regards to anything that brings public harm to the campus, PUBLIC. Admin should be informing the community about all injustices on campus. With respects to confidentiality. [sic]

Link to this FAQ

FROM: Don Laackman
SUBJECT: Message from the President - Leadership Update
SEND DATE/TIME:  Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Dear Members of the Champlain Community,

I am pleased to announce the creation of a new position at Champlain — Assistant Vice President (AVP) of Diversity, Community and Inclusion. This new role reinforces our continued institutional focus on advancing diversity, inclusion and equity efforts at Champlain, in support of our institutional priorities and the goals outlined in the College's 2020 Strategic Plan.

The new AVP will report to Dr. Angela Batista, whose title is now Vice President of Student Affairs and Institutional Diversity and Inclusion. The AVP will serve as a key member of the Institutional Diversity and Inclusion Leadership Team and be a strategic partner in achieving the College's diversity and inclusion goals. Responsibilities for this role include the following:

  • Overseeing diversity and inclusion initiatives within Student Affairs and Institutional Diversity and Inclusion, including Accessibility Services, the Office of Diversity and Inclusion, and the Women's and Gender Center.
  • Developing and evaluating the institution's short and long-range diversity and inclusion goals and objectives.
  • Assisting with the implementation and delivery of initiatives to advance institutional diversity and inclusion, including faculty, staff and student learning, and student transition and success initiatives.
  • Serving on the College's Title IX Team, coordinating the College's bias response and student grievance processes, and serving as a member of our forthcoming Student Success Team.
  • Collaborating broadly with internal and external partners to advance a thriving, engaged and inclusive community.  

This role marks a continuation of the work Angela has been spearheading on campus in developing Champlain's institutional diversity, inclusion and equity strategy. Since Angela came on board last summer, she has worked in consultation and collaboration with our community to advise Champlain on the structures, processes and resources necessary to more fully realize the diversity and inclusion goals and aspirations outlined in our 2020 Strategic Plan. We thank the many students, faculty and staff who have contributed their ideas and perspectives as part of this process.

With the addition of an AVP, we will be able to continue this momentum, and put into action projects and initiatives designed to create and sustain an engaging, inclusive, and caring campus environment for all students, faculty and staff.

The search process for the AVP has begun. We have contracted with Spelman Johnson, a firm that specializes in serving higher education institutions, to support us in this effort. We will update you on the search process as our plans develop.

I want to again affirm my commitment to the continuation and expansion of our diversity and inclusion efforts at Champlain. Over the next few months, we will continue to evaluate our campus needs and evolve our current structure, systems and services. This includes designing a faculty and staff training framework and evaluating and enhancing diversity and inclusion components of student orientation. We will continue to keep you apprised. I welcome your questions, comments, and insights as we move forward.

Donald J. Laackman
President, Champlain College

Link to this FAQ

FROM: Dr. Angela Batista
SUBJECT: Important Message — Update About Recent Bias Incidents on Burlington Campus
SEND DATE/TIME: Monday, February 26, 2018

Dear Members of the Champlain Community:

Last week I wrote to inform you that white nationalist posters had been found on campus. We shared our belief that Champlain, and other colleges in the Burlington area, were targets of a racist messaging campaign designed specifically to disrupt colleges across the country.

On February 23, 2018, the Burlington Police Department (BPD) issued a public statement outlining the results of the investigation undertaken to identify the individuals responsible. The BPD statement reports that there is "no evidence to suggest UVM or Champlain students were a part of the group, or facilitated its work."  It is further noted that "several of the people identified in the group that placed the posters reside out of state, with no affiliation to Burlington."

Our Campus Public Safety and Student Life staff are continuing to monitor the situation and remain in close contact with local authorities regarding this ongoing investigation.

Last week, we also received various reports about a digital blackface picture posted on social media. The College's investigation into these reports is continuing and the Office of Community Standards will follow our disciplinary process to address potential violations of any college policy as appropriate. Similar incidents should be reported using the online Bias Incident Report Form or by calling Campus Public Safety at 802-865-6465.

I also want to take this opportunity to thank students, faculty and staff who participated in various gatherings throughout the week.  We are grateful to community members who came together to discuss concerns and shared ideas and hopes for how we can continue to work to advance inclusion at Champlain.

In response to the requests that we extend this conversation and focus on action, I commit to following up with the community again in a few weeks with specific opportunities to gather for further discussion, shared learning and action planning.  I hope that many will choose to participate and encourage others to attend.

Please feel free to keep sending your questions and ideas to diversity@champlain.edu and to reach out for resources as needed.


Angela Batista

Link to this FAQ

Police Department City of Burlington

Results of Investigation of White Supremacist Posters on the UVM Campus 

Last week, posters bearing white supremacist messaging were discovered in public places on the campuses of the University of Vermont and Champlain College. While the posters themselves did not appear to rise to the level of criminal activity, a multi-jurisdictional investigation sought to identify the individuals responsible in order to determine if they were part of an extremist group with a potential for violence.

Special Agents of the Federal Bureau Investigation, in collaboration with local law enforcement partners, have been actively investigating the incident using several credible leads. They have been able to conclusively determine that several of the people identified in the group that placed the posters reside out of state, with no affiliations to the Burlington community, academic or otherwise. Another is known to investigators as a Vermonter who lives elsewhere in the state.

Although some persons involved remain unidentified, there is no evidence to suggest UVM or Champlain students were a part of the group, or facilitated its work. It does appear, however, that these individuals intended to cause strife, disruption and mistrust on local college campuses by expressing hostile and troubling messages in their public places. There is also evidence that these individuals have participated in extremist group activities in other communities.

The investigation continues. No evidence recovered suggests intentions of violence. Regardless, since violence can go hand in hand with racial extremism, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and local partners will continue to monitor the group's actions.

Mayor, City Council President and Police Chief Condemn Posters

Mayor Miro Weinberger, City Council President Jane Knodell, and Burlington Police Chief Brandon del Pozo released the following statements in response to the poster investigation's findings:

"The City of Burlington condemns both the racist sentiment articulated in the posters and the effort by outside extremists to incite discord in this community," said Mayor Miro Weinberger. "Burlington is a welcoming City that celebrates and draws strength from its diversity, and we cannot allow these instigators to divide us. We will continue to monitor these individuals and take further action as warranted. At the same time, our community must acknowledge and continue the urgent work of rooting racism and implicit bias out of all of our institutions."

"The City Council joins Mayor Weinberger and Chief del Pozo in committing to the safety of all residents of Burlington from race-based and other forms of harassment in our community," said City Council President Jane Knodell. "We all believe we are a better and stronger community because of our diversity."

"Since first learning of these acts, the Burlington Police Department has been working with federal law enforcement to conduct an investigation and ensure the safety of our community members," said Burlington Police Chief Brandon del Pozo. "We will continue to diligently monitor the situation and encourage community members to keep in mind the intent of an outside party to exacerbate tensions in our City. The issues of race and justice are real ones in Vermont, but we have to be vigilant about letting outside forces use them to create crises and to turn us against each other."

Anotonio B. Pomerleau Building - One North Avenue - Burlington, VT 05401

Link to this FAQ

FROM: Dr. Angela Batista, Katie Hawley
SUBJECT: Important Message - Update About Recent Bias Incidents on Burlington Campus
SEND DATE/TIME: Monday, February 19, 2018

Dear Champlain Community:

This past weekend posters promoting racist, white nationalistic views were found in various locations on Champlain's main campus, including the IDX student center and multiple residence halls.

As an institution, Champlain unequivocally condemns racism, bigotry and discrimination in all forms. As community members, we must continue to reject the cowardice and hatred these messages represent. The views expressed in the posters are in direct conflict with Champlain's core values and goal of creating a more diverse and inclusive community.

Our colleagues in Campus Public Safety and the Division of Student Life will investigate this matter and determine any violations of campus policy. While the individual(s) responsible for hanging these posters is yet unknown, we believe these materials are part of a larger national campaign and could continue to appear on Champlain's campus, as has occurred at nearby institutions. Similar incidents should be reported using the online Bias Incident Report Form or by calling Campus Public Safety.

As we strive to create and maintain a caring and supportive community for all, we must not be naive to the fact that actions such as this can take a psychological and physical toll on individuals' well-being. Please support those affected by listening to and validating their experience. Students seeking additional assistance should be directed to the Office of Diversity and Inclusion in IDX or the Counseling Center in Skiff Hall. Employees seeking additional resources are encouraged to contact the People Center or the College's Employee Assistance Program.


Dr. Angela Batista
Vice President, Student Life
Special Advisor to the President for Diversity and Inclusion

Katie Hawley
Vice President for People, Strategic Communications & External Affairs

Link to this FAQ

Institutional Diversity & Inclusion Update

[January 15, 2018]

The following activities and accomplishments were reported from across the College during the Fall 2017 semester.

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  • Outline and implement a comprehensive Diversity & Inclusion communication plan (In process)
  • Implement new institutional Bias Incident Reporting and Follow-Up Protocol and integrate CPS processes. (In process)
  • Launch, set goals for and engage the new Diversity Council (Completed)
  • Launch Diversity & Inclusion Collaborative. (In process)
  • Continue to engage students, faculty and staff to gather input around institutional needs through a Diversity Listening Tour with individuals, groups, departments, etc. (In process)
  • Collaborate with Academic Affairs in the development of inclusive classroom resources. (In process)
  • Design and Implement a new D&I Institutional Assessment plan. (In process)
Link to this FAQ

Contact: Dr. Angela Batista, Vice President of Student Life and Special Advisor to the President for Diversity and Inclusion

  • Continued to coordinate institutional efforts and serve as resource for departments, programs and groups across the College.
  • Worked to implement a D&I learning plan for the Board of Trustees and the Cabinet.
  • Began  to carry-out conversations to consider the College's institutional diversity framework (diversity, inclusion, equity, etc.).
  • Established a partnership with Academic Affairs, the People Center and Student Life to implement a framework and on-going plan for D&I Employee Learning (faculty/staff).
  • Led a collaborative effort with the Let Us Teach Committee and other partners to plan the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. 2018 Celebration, sponsored by the President's Office and supported by over 25 partners across campus.
  • Guided the development and implementation of the Student Diversity Programming (SDP) Team within the Division of Student Life.
  • Continued to work with the Women's' Empowerment Initiative (WEI) leadership group to integrate the initiative into the institutional diversity strategy.
  • Continued to work to outline and implement a comprehensive Diversity & Inclusion communication plan.
Link to this FAQ

Contact: Dr. Eric Ronis, Special Assistant to the Provost for D&I in Academics

In the Fall 2017 semester, I was able to offer numerous learning opportunities around diversity and inclusion for faculty and staff, including a session in which faculty shared their own good practices with one another and two sessions in conjunction with the Center for Learning and Technology (see below for details).

  • Creating Positive Community in the Classroom (with Rebecca Mills and Kelly Thomas); attendance: 36
  • Fostering Supportive Communication Climates; attendance: 9
  • Practicing the Difficult Conversation; attendance: 4
  • Best practices for using small groups (with Rebecca Mills); attendance: 30
  • Listening, the most important skill; attendance, 11
  • Great Ideas for Teaching Students (faculty exchange); attendance, 32
  • Working with our international students (presented by Jessa Karki); attendance, 12
  • Names and Pronouns (with SGA members Bekkah Airewele, Kiana Best); attendance, 23
  • Conversation with CC staff around D&I concerns; total attendance, 48

I worked with various college committee reps to create a first iteration of student learning outcomes for Champlain College students in terms of diversity, equity and inclusion. I worked with another group of faculty to create an optional  "inclusive classroom statement" for inclusion in syllabi. I worked with yet another group of faculty, staff and administrators to put forward a "Social Impact Scholar Track," a new academic initiative that will hopefully raise even greater awareness around diversity, inclusion and equity issues. Finally, I chaired the D&I Toolkit group to offer faculty best practices through a shared Canvas course shell.

Plans for Spring 2018 include:

  • A panel on "professionalism" through an E/D/I lens
  • A presentation to Champlain College staff on the results of my interviews with 48 of them around their D&I related concerns
  • Gathering feedback from the community on the learning outcomes document, the optional syllabus statement, and the Canvas D&I toolkit.
  • Hands-on workshop sessions to provide learning opportunities for faculty and staff.
  • Continued work on the Social impact Scholar Program to ready it for launch in Fall 2018.
Link to this FAQ

CPS continues to make diversity and inclusion a priority, by virtue of necessity. As our students of color have increasingly been over-represented on the conditional probation and dismissal lists, and are leaving the institution at a greater pace, it is clear we need to be thinking differently about how we are supporting these students. To that end, CPS has

  1. Required all students to undertake a mandatory orientation course to prepare them for the type of work expected in online programs;
  2. Created a rubric for "at risk" that allows us to begin to support students more directly and purposefully as they enter the institution and throughout their life cycles;
  3. Lobbied for the kinds of supportive academic training, coaching, and tutoring that would enable them to be successful academically;
  4. Begun building a course required of all new students that would teach them about who they are as learners and help them to create academic habits of success;
  5. Required all students who do not present as strong writers to take ENGL 111, an introduction to college-level writing, so that they will be prepared in our writing intensive courses;
  6. Undertaken several training modules for advisors and faculty to support students of color both inside and outside the classroom;
  7. Required all new staff and faculty to go through Intercultural University as a way of establishing a culture that situates our students - of all backgrounds - at the center of the experience of teaching and working here. (I'm not sure how we will move forward with this initiative without IU.)

The intention is to begin to see some movement in the data that suggest our students of color are not performing at the same rate as those in the majority groups.

Supporting diversity and inclusion is an ongoing endeavor and one that will remain at the top of the list of priorities as we continue to grow our student population, hire to support those students, and work to get them to graduation.

Link to this FAQ

The Core Division sponsored a workshop featuring Angela Batista titled, Understanding Intent vs Impact and Developing Skills to Engage Others Inclusively that was very well attended by faculty and staff from across campus.

Dean Betsy Beaulieu offered a customized section of COR 220:Aesthetic Expressions that focused on African American creative expression. The class spent a long weekend in Washington, DC where they saw a performance by Carrie Mae Weems at the Kennedy Center and visited the National Museum of African American History & Culture.

Brian Murphy was instrumental in helping Lydia Clemmons, of the Clemmons Family Farm, apply for and receive a massive grant.  This work was done in partnership with Roz Whitaker-Heck from the CCM Division.

Link to this FAQ

Contact: Dr. Angela Batista, Vice President of Student Life and Special Advisor to the President for Diversity and Inclusion

Launched an expanded Diversity Council and set a working plan for the year.  More information about work of the Council will be shared in the near future. Visit our website for a list of current council members.

Link to this FAQ

Organized by Roz Whitaker-Heck (CCM)

  • Shades of Me: The Women of Color Affinity Group participated in the Vermont Reads 2017 Project which involved reading the novel Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson. One of the first activities was a reading retreat with six members at the Clemmons Family Farm. The next evening, we went to Burlington High School to meet the author for a book signing and talk.  The final event was an Art Showcase put on by Shades of Me. The art ranged from poems about their own experiences as women of color to photography they had taken to explain their lives. There were about twenty people who attended this event at the Women's and Gender Center.
  • The Clemmons Family Farm's Sense of Place project is a collaboration with the Division of Communication and Creative Media and the Core Division made possible by a Perry Chair Innovations 2016-2017 grant and a recent $350,000 grant through Artplace America. The 2.5 year project involves the transformation of the African American-owned farm into a multicultural heritage center.

Van Dora Williams (CCM)  and Kristin Novotny (Core) partnered up in Fall 2017 to bring together students from a Core Bodies class and a Broadcast class to discuss the impacts and effect of visual stereotyping and the ethical implications of content creation.

Fall 2017-Spring 2018

As part of its 2017-2020 Strategic Plan, the CCM Division established a CCM D&I Taskforce to help cultivate a faculty environment in CCM that fosters knowledge, self-awareness, inclusivity, and equity. The D&I Taskforce is also leading an initiative to help faculty integrate into specific courses content and materials that reflect diverse perspectives and create assignments that require students to identify and interact with diverse populations.

Link to this FAQ

The Division of Education & Human Studies is in a year of strategic planning, our Imagine EHS project.  Diversity & Inclusion will be one of the elements of focus for Imagine EHS during the Spring 2018 semester.

Link to this FAQ

Contact: Dr. Lisa Bunders, Vice President of Enrollment Management

  • Partnered with Enrollment Management to identify how to leverage personnel and other resources to enhance the recruitment and admission processes.
  • Created a partnership with the City of Burlington; hosted Pathways to College and Career Fair - Chittenden's first access college fair with Vermont colleges. Focused on helping underrepresented, underserved, and under-resourced VT students learn about the scholarships available to them at various institutions throughout the State.
  • Saw an increase in applicants from our pathways schools; Over 30 students plan to attend this year's College Pathways Visit Program at the end of January. Currently in the process of adding a new pathways school from the Bronx, NY.
  • Developed a closer relationship with ODI to help inform each other of the work that needs to be done around Access and Success to support our current and future CARE cohorts.
  • Developed specific workshops for high school freshmen and sophomore, who are first-generation, low-income and New Americans, to help them begin to imagine that a college degree is possible for them and how to develop a strong application.
  • Increased awareness within Chittenden schools around the institutional scholarships available to Vermont students; New American Scholarship & Vermont First
  • Created and shared training and resources to help Admissions Counselors and Student Ambassadors navigate conversations with families, students, and counselors relating to the campus' visibility projects, gender non-conforming students, and support for diverse students on campus.
  • Worked with various departments to collect data and information on the current CARE cohorts in regards to the way each was integrated and oriented to Champlain. The goal is to discover the strengths of each program and learn how the program set the students up for academic successes. The outcome will be to develop an effective strategy to transition future CARE cohorts to Champlain College.
  • Summer Projects:
    • Plans to expand the College Pathways program to include more schools and organizations, especially within the KIPP network.
    • As an anti-melt initiative: Continue to strengthen the communication plan, in which was developed last Summer, to guide incoming CARE students in completing new student responsibilities/tasks during a period when they are without school counselors; Summer months and a period many students of color, low-income, and underrepresented students tend to melt away.
    • As an anti-melt initiative: Expand upon last year's "virtual" gaming event for admitted students to engage with current students and Champlain staff. The virtual admitted event allows students to engage and participate in a way that takes into consideration their needs and what is comfortable for some students.
  • In October the Enrollment Service Center (ESC) changed its name to Compass Student Services. Compass Student Services reflects our students-first philosophy. Further, without a focus on admissions, "Enrollment Service Center" was misleading and not inclusive of all the work that we do and all the students that we serve, such as CPS, on-campus, traditional undergrad, and graduate students.
Link to this FAQ

Contact: Dr. Brian Murphy, Assistant Professor Core Division

We offered a well-attended program called "The Safety Paradox," open to the entire campus and linked to curriculum through two sections of COR 320: Human Rights and Responsibilities. The event included a faculty panel and group discussion, and showcased the scholarship of Dr. Katheryn Wright of the Core Division, whose essay "The Safety Paradox" provided the point of departure for the discussion of free speech, safe spaces, brave spaces, and inclusion on campus and in the classroom. Members of the committee also contributed to other faculty development opportunities and programming aimed at making Champlain more diverse and inclusive, including the film screening and cross-disciplinary discussion on The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks.

Spring 2018: Members of the committee will continue to contribute to efforts across campus aimed at making Champlain more diverse, inclusive, and equitable, through open inquiry and innovative thinking. For example, we will participate in the panel on the concept of "professional" through an e/d/i lens, and other upcoming events. Further, we are working to collaborate with faculty in every division to create a framework for professional development in terms of e/d/i, through which any faculty member from any background or level of experience can incorporate inclusive strategies in their teaching.

Link to this FAQ

Contact: Shelley Navari, Vice President

  • Working to continue to ensure we have a diversified pool of candidates of the recruitment process for our open positions
  • Supporting and encouraging participation in learning opportunities to enhance our awareness and lens in this space.
  • Increasing outreach to known population of students who need additional student financial support.
Link to this FAQ

Lead: Robert Caldwell, Vice President of Institutional  Advancement

Launched Champlainconnect.org. This is a constituency-wide (alumni, parents, faculty, staff, students, friends) professional networking platform for individuals to connect through career, industry and profession. Individuals can connect, seek or offer job, mentoring and internship opportunities, and access a number of other related benefits across all geographies and demographics across the globe. Use of this platform is provided through Advancement at no cost to the user.

Stewarded 64 endowed scholarship fund donor families through fund reports and introduction profile of the student scholarship recipients.

Raised the following funds (YTD-as of December 31, 2017):

Support-A-Student Scholarship $450,553
Single Parents Program $227,023
Single Parents Emergency Fund $18,960
New American Scholarship Fund $10,225
Yellow Ribbon Program $7,210
Student Angel Emergency Fund $3,520
Vermont First Scholarships $21,345
Pratt Scholarship for Diversity $200,000
Link to this FAQ

Contact: Bianca Bellot, Associate Director of ODI and Student Engagement

  • Helped organize and run a pre-orientation program (AHEAD) for incoming first year students that identify as: first generation, students in need of financial support, students of color, and participants in the CARE scholarship program.
    • AHEAD leadership team submitted an application to have the program nationally recognized through NASPA.
  • Held a re-opening party to showcase the new and improved ODI office space and recognize new staff on campus.
  • Continued support to transition to college for our new cohort of first year CARE (Pathways) students.  Includes:
    • Weekly program called "Education Empowerment" where Monday-Thursday different Faculty/Staff from across the college spend an office hour in the ODI providing academic support to students.
    • Weekly CARE meetings to check in, provide academic and social support, etc.
  • Began working collaboratively with the Student Diversity Programmers team to continue efforts to promote collaboration across our various offices in Student Life in terms of diversity focused and themed programs for the campus community.
  • Worked with Residential Life to expand and enhance Native History Month programming, including hosting a keynote speaker, Dallas Goldtooth.   
  • Implemented more focused efforts to address the needs of food insecure students on campus by:
    • Creating a working group to address these needs
    • Starting a Food Pantry on campus located in the Swap Shop in the basement of Skiff Hall.
      • Includes a tracking system to help the College continue to assess need.
    • Holding a food donation drive the first week of Spring 2018.
    • Continuing conversations about long term solutions regarding food waste, food pantry stocking/monitoring, and potential partnerships with Sodexo.
  • Supported the implementation of a new student Latinx group (Alianza Latinx) on campus supporting the needs and desires of students on campus that identify as Latino/Latina/Latinx.
    • Included a large scale Dia de Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) celebration as their first signature event.
  • Supported visibility projects, which included painting and engaging students in dialogue around a Pride and Black Lives Matter crosswalk on-campus.
  • ODI, in collaboration with Center for Service and Sustainability, and Women's and Gender Center, started a Basketball Mentorship Program with Edmunds Middle School.
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Contact: Michelle Miller, Sr. Associate Provost

  • OIE staff members have been participating in campus-wide diversity & inclusion initiatives:
    • Jessa Karki will join the Diversity Council.
    • Noah Goldblatt has been working with Eric Ronis and other faculty and staff to develop Equity, Diversity and Inclusion outcomes for the College.
    • Jessa Karki developed and presented "The World Around You: International Students in Your Classroom," multiple times this past year to various audiences.
  • OIE has begun distributing a series of monthly newsletters to faculty and staff to keep them informed about our international students and our Burlington-based students studying abroad. Check them out here if you missed them earlier.
  • We are undertaking several initiatives to support student populations for whom study abroad is difficult.
    • We are implementing a new financial model that will provide students with more affordable choices for study abroad.
    • We are partnering with a single parent student to develop better support resources for single parents who would like to take advantage of our global opportunities.
    • Our "Students First, Always" focus for this year has driven us to think more "outside the box" about how we can meet individual students' needs.
  • International students took center stage at the Nations United event with speeches about comparative cultures. International Education Week provided seven other opportunities for community learning, including a workshop about name pronunciation organized by students.

The Office of International Education joined the Diversity Abroad Network this year to enhance our ability to support inclusive excellence in international education

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Contact: Katie Hawley, Vice President for People, Strategic Communications & External Relations

  • Participated in "Let Us Teach" planning committee celebrating the life of Martin Luther King.
  • Coordinated diversity, inclusion and equity session at Manager's Roundtable.
  • In conjunction with Student Life, offered "Pronouns are Everywhere" and "Safe Zone Training" Dare U workshops.
  • Dana Hutchins facilitated the Deliberative Dialogue series on global diversity, domestic diversity, privilege and systems.
  • People Center staff member participated in "Change the Story" to learn about gender bias in HR practices.
  • Signed on to Vermont's Pay Equity Compact.
  • Offered the recruitment bias training as a Dare U session, in addition to the training provided at the start of a formalized search process.
  • Hosted series of diversity listening sessions facilitated by Dr. Eric Ronis
  • Offered Practicing the Difficult Conversation, Listening by Eric Ronis
  • Jennifer Archambault participated in NASPA's Diversity and MulticuLtural conference, as part of the institutional diversity learning collaborative.
  • Katie Hawley is participating in an 18-month professional development program focusing on organizational development and diversity.
  • The People Center team holds a special meeting each meeting to facilitate continued professional growth regarding diversity, inclusion and equity.

Plan for Spring 2018:

  • The People Center will continue to hold a special meeting each meeting to facilitate continued professional growth regarding diversity, inclusion and equity.
  • Offering Diversity Book Series for faculty and staff beginning January 24. Selected books  for the Spring semester include Yaa Gyasi's Homegoing and Jesmyn Ward's Salvage the Bone
  • Offering the recruitment bias training as a Dare U session, in addition to the training provided at the start of each formalized search process
  • Jennifer Archambault continues to serve on the Diversity Council
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Contact: Katie Hawley, Vice President for People, Strategic Communications & External Relations

  • Coordinated creation of the new Black Lives Matter crosswalk and relocation of the Rainbow Crosswalk (relocated due to State regulations regarding crosswalks)
  • Created visuals and graphics to demonstrate institutional support for diversity crosswalks, re-opening of Office of Diversity and Inclusion and Outright Vermont's Fire Truck Pull
  • Supported development of leadership materials in response to Charlottesville and DACA. Strategic Communications and People Center worked together to sign on Champlain to the Vermont Equal Pay Compact.
  • Worked with Champlain Admissions and CEDO to promote "Pathways to College and Career" Fair on November 3
  • Provided media support for article on pronouns
  • Staff attended Diversity Listening Session hosted by Eric Ronis

Spring 2018

  • Crafted press release and extended media invitation for MLK events
  • Social media support for Lavender graduation, women's empowerment initiative and MLK event.
  • Some staff planning to participate in Diversity and Inclusion Book Club
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Contact: Jennifer Jang, Associate Director of Student Diversity Programs and Student Engagement

The Student Diversity Programming Team includes representatives from all the departments within the Division of Student Life responsible for designing and executing student diversity programs. These include the: Student Engagement, Office of Diversity and Inclusion, Residential Life and Student Engagement/Student Diversity Programming, Student Support Resources (Single Parents Program, first generation, commuters and other student groups) and the Women's and Gender Center. This fall the group worked together to agree on a philosophical framework for their work, including developing a mission and mission statement, learning outcomes and goals, core practices, a list of overall diversity and inclusion initiatives, and signature programs.

Programmatic Highlights:

  • Hosted our bi-annual Student Diversity Retreat, AWARE*, where students engage in simulations, reflect on their own identities, learn about other's identities, dialogue about difference, and leave feeling connected to new friends and our Champlain community. (AWARE* = Acknowledging Worldliness while Accepting Respecting and Engaging with others).
  • Held Lunch & Learn presentations on topics such as service dog 101, Intro to Mandarin Chinese, and accessibility issues for those with disabilities.
  • Collaborated with other diversity programmers on campus to share and unite diversity programming efforts.
  • The Diversity Ambassadors, student peer educators and programmers,, held weekly programs covering a variety of diversity topics including race, gender, mental health, indigenous people, and cultural celebrations.
  • Plans to set foundation in the spring to host a Tunnel of Oppression in Fall 2018 - an interactive simulation that helps participants understand and empathize with diversity issues such as race, class, mental health, and intimate partner violence.
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Contact: Maggie Melvin, Associate Director of Women's and Gender Center

The Women's Empowerment Initiative is in an exciting transition year with the dawn of new institutional senior leadership. The Initiative will take the form of a series of events for the 2017-2018 year that relate to the goals of WEI. You can learn more about the mission and events for 2017-2018 at www.champlain.edu/wei.  

We are currently seeking members of our community to join a Women's Empowerment Initiative Programming Team to help plan events for the spring semester and next academic year. If you are interested in learning more and/or joining this team, please contact Maggie Melvin at mmelvin@champlain.edu.

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Contact: Maggie Melvin, Associate Director of Women's and Gender Center

The Women's and Gender Center has had a robust fall semester, in large part due to the many enriching programs with students (48 programs with 607 student attendees), the emergence of a WGC Stakeholder Group comprised of 30+ passionate staff and faculty, and the intentional collaboration among other institutional partners engaging in diversity programming.  The Center is planning its first Women's Leadership Retreat for early in the spring semester that will be a chalk full weekend for approx. 20 women students from all years and majors to come together to learn more about their personal leadership styles, explore new ways to develop their leadership skills, hear from local women and student leaders, and leave feeling empowered, inspired, and connected to other women on campus and in the community.

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