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Project Inclusion at WPI is a three-year initiative to help the university set standards and expectations for a campus environment that is accepting and welcoming to all. Under its guidelines, WPI establishes the definitions and sets goals around diversity, inclusion, and equity. 

Conversation with the President - Summer 2018

Project Inclusion: A Conversation With The President

What Is Project Inclusion?

Project Inclusion, at WPI, is a three-year initiative dedicated to helping the University set standards and expectations for a campus environment that is accepting and welcoming to all. Under its guidelines, WPI establishes the definitions and sets goals around diversity, inclusion, and equity, and sets priorities for ongoing assessment to create positive cultural change. How will Project Inclusion do this? via campus self assessment. How else can we figure out where we need to be in terms of Diversity Equity and Inclusion (DEI), unless we first assess and analyze where we are? This assessment and evaluation is at the heart of Project Inclusion.

Launched in the spring of 2017, Project Inclusion uses input from the entire community to establish policies to help WPI assess the current campus culture/environment as it pertains to DEI. Facilitators assist in the process and help guide community ideas and proposals and recommendations into strategies and actions that will be successful on the WPI campus and eventually, possibly, implemented. Read the bios of the facilitators WPI is working with here.

With the guidance of facilitators, Project Inclusion begins that assessment in a structured way using the following dimensions: 

Project Inclusion Info graphic

The dimensions represent the pieces of campus that, as a whole, represent the institution in its entirety. 

  1. Philosophy and Mission
  2. Faculty Support and Involvement 
  3. Curriculum, Pedagogy, and Research
  4. Staff Engagement and Involvement 
  5. Student Support and Involvement 
  6. Administrative Leadership and Institutional Support

Read more about Project Inclusion’s Process (PDF) and Project Inclusion’s Purpose and Expectations (PDF).

Keeping the Conversation Going

Michelle Jones-Johnson, vice president for talent development and chief diversity officer, believes community discussions and efforts keep the conversation around diversity and inclusion open and continuing. Employees don't just work at WPI, they help create and sustain an environment where community members feel like they are making a difference. Read more about how Project Inclusion helps that process

Community Input, Lasting Results

The launch of the Project Inclusion initiative in spring of 2017 welcomed input from the community and explained how weaving diversity and inclusion into the fabric of WPI would bring lasting results. One of the first steps was forming the Project Inclusion Steering Committee which gathers information from the community to ensure the most appropriate and efficient strategies are put into place.  

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Project Inclusion Community Cookout alt
Project Inclusion Community Cookout in honor of Celebrate Diversity Month

Engaging and Intentional Programming

Project Inclusion hosts a series of engaging and intentional programming that ties back to the initiative's mission of administering diversity, equity, and inclusion into the bloodstream of the university and campus culture; and not only that, many of the events serve to keep the WPI community apprised of the initiative's mission, goals, and next steps. Programming takes the form of cookouts, community listening circles, speaker series, and much more. All project inclusion programming is advertised via email, WPI Today, the WPI University calendar, and various WPI listserves. Make sure to keep a look out! 

An In-Depth Look at Project Inclusion

The Daily Herd recently caught up with Peter Hansen, humanities & arts professor, director of the International & Global Studies program, and 2017 - 2018 co-chair of Project Inclusion’s Rubric Steering Committee (RSC), to take a deeper look at Peter's involvement within the Rubric Steering Committee and the Project Inclusion initiative as a whole. Read more about it here

President Laurie Leshin and Vice President Michelle Jones-Johnson talk about Project Inclusion

Project Inclusion is high on WPI's priority list and it's important to know why. President Laurie Leshin and Michelle Jones-Johnson, WPI’s Vice President for Talent and Inclusion, discuss the initiative and the role it will be playing throughout the institution. The WPI Journal published an article about the conversation in the Summer 2018 edition of the print publication.

Read about it here.

Email inclusion@wpi.edu for more information! 

DEI Leadership Council Members 2019 - 2020

Co-Chair: Michelle Jones-Johnson, VP and Chief Diversity Officer
Co-Chair: Rame Hanna, Director for Diversity and Inclusive Excellence​ for Talent and Inclusion
Project Inclusion Coordinator: Christelle Hayles, Diversity and Inclusion Specialist 
 

Philosophy and Mission

Andrew (Andy) Palumbo, Dean, Admissions and Financial Aid
Anna Gold, University Librarian, Library Services
Casey Wall, Director, Residential Services
Christine Sharry, Director, Student Activities
Diane Begreen, Operations Manager, Library Services
Emily Douglas, Professor/Department Head | Social Science & Policy Studies
Kris Sullivan, Assistant Vice President, Academic Affairs 
Paula Quinn, Associate Director, Center for Project-Based Learning
Peter Hansen, Professor, Humanities and Arts; Director, International and Global Studies
Tiffiny Butler, Director of Multicultural Affairs

Rubric Steering Committee Members 2018 - 2019

Rubric Steering Committee Members 2017 - 2018