Known for its emphasis on "learning by doing," California Polytechnic State University (Cal Poly) combines technical and professional curricula with the arts and humanities to give students a wide breadth of hands-on experience. Thanks to the university's investment in robust diversity and inclusion initiatives, Cal Poly doubled the number of applications from students with marginalized identities between 2008 and 2018.
When Jamie Patton joined Cal Poly in 2017 as the new assistant vice president for Student Affairs, Diversity and Inclusion, the campus climate was "chilly and hostile" when it came to issues of identity and marginalization. While students had access to "many of the traditional [diversity and inclusion] operations," such as a multicultural center and a mandatory course, Patton and his team recognized the need to foster an "intentional conversation about diversity, equity, and inclusion" on campus.
With just shy of 22,000 students spread across a 9,000-acre campus, Patton knew the university needed to:
"I can't say enough about the work of the team. I appreciate the trust and the relationship that we had to build in a short amount of time."
In Patton's opinion, "the launch went very smoothly," thanks in part to Vector Solutions' responsiveness and consistent communication between the two teams. The university was:
Thanks to the baseline of knowledge and skills introduced by Vector Solutions' Diversity & Inclusion Courses, the Cal Poly team is ready to reach new depths in student learning about growing inclusion. Next steps include: