Diversity Strategic Plan Planning Process

The Diversity Strategic Planning Steering Committee was formed in the spring of 2014 and charged with articulating recommendations to Chancellor Kumble Subbaswamy via a campus diversity strategic plan. The plan was to have a particular focus on increasing enrollment of underrepresented groups on campus and ensuring a positive experience for all members of the UMass Amherst campus community. 

Over the course of its initial meetings, the Steering Committee identified five thematic areas around which to organize its findings and recommendations:

  1. Establish UMass Amherst as a destination of choice for students of color and other underrepresented groups.
  2. Improve the campus climate of inclusion.
  3. Enhance effectiveness of curriculum and educational programs with regard to diversity and inclusion.
  4. Increase focus on recruiting, retention, and promotion of diverse faculty and staff.
  5. Increase outreach and engagement with external communities/schools with large proportions of underrepresented minorities.

For each thematic area, the Steering Committee researched the current state of affairs on the campus based on available information and made a number of recommendations for future action. For each recommendation, the Steering Committee identified, when possible, the specific office, department, or organization on campus responsible for the necessary actions.

The subcommittee drew on the extensive work already done by administrative units, governance groups, and student organizations, and is gathering additional input through a variety of meetings and forums.

Supporting documents may be accessed here.


Academic Year 2015-2016 Updates

Subsequent to the release of the plan, in Fall 2015, Chancellor Subbaswamy reconvened steering committee the committee to:

  1. Identify and recommend the best method through which the campus can field a comprehensive, campus-wide climate survey, including the creation of a timeline for release and analysis;
  2. Consider necessary revisions to the goals and action plan outlined in the 2015 Diversity Strategic Plan in light of feedback received in the Fall 2015 listening sessions and discussion forums; and
  3. Consider the creation of appropriate metrics to ensure accountability for the goals and recommendations identified in the 2015 Diversity Strategic Plan



Diversity Strategic Plan Steering Committee Membership changed slightly between the 2014-2015 and 2015-2016 academic years. Notations are included below.

  • Amer Ahmed, Director of Intercultural Teaching and Faculty Development (Spring 2016)
  • Sumera Ahsan, Graduate Student (2014-2015)
  • Sionan Barrett, Student, President, Student Government Association (2015-2016)
  • Bryan Beck, Chancellor's Office (2014-2016)
  • Jasmine Bertrand-Halidy (2014-2015)
  • Leykia Brill, Assistant Provost for Diversity
  • Durryle Brooks, Graduate Student (2014-2015)
  • Mari Castañeda, Professor, Communication (2014-Fall 2015)
  • Lauren Coakley, Student, Speaker of the Undergraduate Student Senate (Spring 2016)
  • Armanthia Duncan, Graduate Student (2014-2015)
  • Robert Feldman, Deputy Chancellor (2014-Fall 2015, Chair 2014-2015)
  • Debora Ferreira, Executive Director, Equal Opportunity & Diversity/Chief Diversity Officer (2014-2016)
  • Enku Gelaye, Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs & Campus Life (2014-2106)
  • Daniel Gerber, Associate Dean of Academic Affairs, School of Public Health and Health Sciences (Spring 2016)
  • Adina Gianelli, Student, President, Graduate Student Senate (2014-2016)
  • Bryan Harvey, Associate Chancellor and Chief Planning Officer (2014-2016)
  • John Kennedy, Vice Chancellor for University Relations
  • Chantal Lima Barbosa, Student, Vice President, Student Government Association (Spring 2016)
  • Jennifer Lundquist, Associate Dean, College of Social & Behavioral Sciences (2014-2016)
  • Mzamo Mangaliso, Associate Professor, Isenberg School of Management (2014-2016)
  • Josh Odam, Student, Legal Studies/Political Science (2014-2016)
  • Shelly Perdomo, Interim Assistant Vice Chancellor for Advocacy, Inclusion and Support Programs (2014-2016, Chair 2015-2016) 
  • Vinayak Rao, Student, President, Student Government Association (2014-2015)
  • James Roche, Associate Provost for Enrollment Management (2014-2016)
  • Amilcar Shabazz, Faculty Advisor to the Chancellor for Diversity & Excellence (2014-2016)