Equity and Inclusion at Minnesota State

The Office of Equity and Inclusion's purpose is to provide quality services to and support for the institutions and offices of Minnesota State. The division focuses on policies and services designed to foster a diverse faculty, staff and student body.

group of diverse students, 3 young men and 2 young women sitting in common area conversing

Under the direction of the chancellor, the division is responsible for managing and coordinating the policies, procedures, and programs that govern affirmative action, diversity and equal opportunity. The division consults, advises, trains and provides policy development in the areas of non-discrimination investigations, diversity, multiculturalism and affirmative action.

The Office of Equity and Inclusion also engages in strategic and limited outreach to business, community and civic and educational organizations with most of the effort going to support campuses.

Diverse group of traditional and non-traditional students walking outside to classes

The Office of Equity and Inclusion works in collaboration or partnership with each of the 53 Minnesota State Colleges and Universities campuses, other units in the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system office, various communities, K-12 school districts, agencies, businesses and the Attorney General's Office, when necessary to insure that equality of opportunity be available to students in all academic programs and out-of-class activities. Students are part of a culturally diverse world, and it is important for Minnesota State Colleges and Universities to help them understand that world as they prepare to live and work in it. Minnesota State Colleges and Universities will convey values that emphasize the importance of diversity, will use its resources to encourage it and will demonstrate behavior to embody it.

The Office of Equity and Inclusion consults, advises, trains and provides policy development in the areas of non-discrimination investigations, diversity, and affirmative action for the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system. The Office of Equity and Inclusion provides assistance and guidance to Minnesota State Colleges and Universities institutions for affirmative action plan development, complaint investigation and compliance review with regards to State, Federal and Minnesota State Colleges and Universities rules and regulations.

The responsibility for meeting the goals of equal opportunity and for creating an environment that reflects an appreciation of cultural diversity rests with the Equity and Inclusion staff, the community and the college and university communities. Particular obligations center on persons in supervisory roles. Implicit in the latter group is the responsibility to lead, to monitor progress, to be alert to problems and to provide remedies when we fail to meet our goals.

The division promotes working and learning environments that are both physically and psychologically safe. The division assists Minnesota State Colleges and Universities institutions by providing employment and educational environments free of discrimination, harassment, and violence as well as assistance by recruiting and retaining a diverse staff and student body.

The Office of Equity and Inclusion also develops partnerships with business, community, civic and educational organizations to assist Minnesota State Colleges and Universities in carrying out its overall mission to provide support and assistance. And we are committed to fully supporting equal opportunity for everyone, providing affirmative action activities that strengthen the presence of under-represented groups and the development of a system-wide environment in which every individual is valued.

Chief Diversity Officer resources are located in Office 365 SharePoint. You will need a StarID and password to log into this resource site.

The login name/UPN pattern for the Minnesota State Office 365 instance is: starid@minnesotastate.edu

Please substitute your specific StarID for "starid" above. Use your regular StarID password.

Diverse group of students, traditional and non, visiting while waiting at a bus stop

Nickyia Cogshell
Interim Chief Diversity Officer
Phone: 651-201-1812
Email: nickyia.cogshell@minnstate.edu

Josefina (Josey) Landrieu
Interim Assistant Chief Diversity Officer
Phone: 651-201-1475
Email: josey.landrieu@minnstate.edu

Sonya Castillo
Executive Assistant
Phone: 651-201-1463
Email: sonya.castillo@minnstate.edu

Emily Horton
Research Assistant
Phone: 651-201-1745
Email: emily.horton@minnstate.edu

Camillia Comeaux
AmeriCorps VISTA
Phone: 651-201-1837
Email: camillia.comeaux@minnstate.edu


ARPAC Lounge image with people

The purpose of the grants is to support and encourage programs and activities that are having a measurable impact on the access, opportunity, and success of students from underrepresented groups in a systematic fashion so all Minnesotans have access to an extraordinary education. We received twenty-five grant proposals from colleges and universities throughout the Minnesota State.

The following proposals were awarded an Inclusive Excellence Grant for the 2016-2017 Academic Year

 “Developing a Community of Culturally Competent Resources and Care to Support the Mental and Emotional Health of Students of Color”, Century College: 

Students of color in need of mental health care often experience cultural differences and barriers in accessing and benefiting from services on campus and in our communities. Century college’s project will further develop cultural understanding, sensitive care-giving practices, and referral resources among college employees and key departments to improve the assistance provided to and health outcomes of students of color in need of mental health and emotional health. This project includes the following components: an inclusivity campaign and focused training for college staff, faculty, and student leaders.

Equity Training Series”, Saint Paul College:

The Equity Training Series is aimed at improving equity competencies of employees to ensure a more inclusive campuses climate. Led by the Chief Diversity Officer and the Diversity and Equity Racial Task Force, an intersectional frame will allow Saint Paul College to institutionalize equity practices. The project will provide all employees with an introduction to theoretical frameworks, vocabulary and basic skills in the following areas: Social class equity, racial and gender equity, LGBTQI equity, interfaith equity and ability & access equity.  

 “Absent Narrative Traditions ”, Minnesota State University Moorhead:

The purpose of the Absent Narratives/Traditions Pilot Workshop Project is to develop a program to infuse, transform, and strengthen the curricula of the MSU Moorhead School of Teaching and Learning by working in partnership with the Moorhead Public Schools, local communities of color and New Americans. This program will allow MSUM to infuse knowledge from diverse communities into the curricula. MSU Moorhead School of Teaching and Learning anticipates that this project will allow faculty, along with the pre-service teachers and the P-12 teachers who participate in the program, to move toward a more diverse and inclusive curriculum, allowing them to more effectively teach all students.

Indigenous Arts and Sciences Project”, Minnesota State University Moorhead:

For students learning through the pedagogical model of Culturally Based Education (CBE), relevancy between culture and academic goals reaps multiple benefits, many proven to boost overall academic achievement. The proposed project aims to tap into the underrepresented and historically marginalized gifts Native students and communities and proposes to incorporate an Indigenous Arts and Sciences project. This work convenes the expertise and resources of MSUM faculty and staff, the Regional Science Center, White Earth Tribal College, Native Harvest, White Earth Land Recovery Project, and others to address student retention and success through intergenerational opportunities, culture-based service-learning, habitat restoration, and co-curricular projects that focus on land stewardship through recognition and education about the cultural, biological, and economic importance of manoomin (wild rice) to the Anishnabeg.

Remedial Math and College Success”, Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College:

Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College proposes an enhanced learning community pilot project beginning in fall 2016. This project stems from experienced success at the college by incorporating Adult Basic Education in the class. The proposed program will help underrepresented students who qualify for development math courses succeed in completing Match credits needed for completing their degree. Student will participate in a co-instructed (College and ABE instructor) Developmental Math course for 3 credits and a Special Topics course for 1 credit. Upon completion they will move into a 1000 level Math course (taught by college faculty) and a lab (led by an ABE instructor).

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