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Equity, Inclusion and Diversity

Equity, diversity and inclusion. These are more than just three words expressing commitment.

They are integral to our experiences and actions within the College of Humanities and Sciences. Commitment to equity, diversity and inclusion promotes experiences and fuels behaviors that support a welcoming and affirming environment for students, staff and faculty. Whether diversity is based on perspectives, life experiences, cultural backgrounds, social identities and other unique expressions, it makes for a better place to work, to teach and learn, to conduct research and to engage with our local community.

Equity is also expressed in our commitment to and mutually respectful engagement with our local community that has historically faced social inequities in education, health, employment and housing.

We are especially committed to increasing equity for underrepresented minority groups and other protected identities that have historically experienced inequity and lack of representation in higher education.

  • New associate dean role with responsibility for EID
  • Implemented early roll-out of the university’s strategic hiring plan to increase faculty diversity and inclusion in the College
  • Greater recognition of EID work among faculty by including categories for EID (along with community engagement) in scholarship, teaching and service on faculty annual review
  • Established Leaders in Inclusive Learning program that uses a train-the-trainer model to train faculty in inclusive pedagogy throughout College
  • Appointed a special assistant to review equity issues and make recommendations regarding term faculty
  • Convened Community Advisory Council of stakeholders and leaders in Richmond with a focus on equity and diversity
  • Developed EID strategic goals for College
  • Established EID committees in all but one department
  • Established EID website
  • Established funding for department EID committees
  • Implemented EID programing for Dean's Office
  • Recognize time commitment of major EID service in College or university by establishing equity leader’s professional development funds
  • Email and town hall communication from dean regarding emotionally difficult and societal events
  • Conducted a racial equity assessment (in partnership with leadership group in Grace Harris Leadership Group) to understand and address perceived racial inequities
  • Established four College awards for excellence in equity, diversity and inclusion
  • Dean’s Office established closer collaboration with IDEC (CHS’s Inclusion, Diversity and Equity Committee) to engage students, staff, faculty and community members in timely topics through the Diversity Dialogues and IDEC’s speaker series
  • Convened and supported Latinx Faculty/Staff Interest Group to address issues relevant to Latinx faculty, staff and students
  • Convened and supported race, racism and antiracism scholarship group for faculty and staff interested in topic
  • Established funding to support equity in professional development for staff
  • Retained minoritized faculty
  • Provided financial support for space for minoritized students to increase inclusiveness and feelings of belongingness
  • Collaboration with several units on EID activities
  • Include equity, inclusion and diversity statements on all course syllabi
  • Develop guidelines that account for equitable rewards for service
  • Increase faculty participation in inclusive pedagogy, including decolonization of curriculum
  • Implement inclusive hiring practices to increase the number of underrepresented minority staff and faculty
  • Provide increased opportunities for involvement and engagement of CHS staff and faculty to help strengthen social equity in the community
  • Incorporate assessments of faculty (e.g., annual review, promotion and tenure) to account for inclusion and diversity in teaching, service and research
  • Increase student input in equity, inclusion and diversity and community-engaged activities within the College


blanton house at v.c.u.

The College of Humanities and Sciences Inclusion, Diversity and Equity Committee (IDEC) highlights, coordinates, promotes and institutes efforts across all CHS units that foster respect, greater understanding, engagement and inclusion of all its members. 

Visit the IDEC web page for more information.

Meet Dr. Belgrave

faye belgrave

Faye Belgrave, Ph.D., is the associate dean for equity and community partnerships for the College of Humanities and Sciences.

Learn more about her role in the College.

Key Concepts

We invite you to join us in showing your commitment by practicing these values.

two v.c.u. students working together on a laptop

levi walter receiving assistance with their graduation regalia

four v.c.u. students with bright t-shirts that read 'i love v.c.u.'

Strategic Goals

We must be intentional about EID as seen through commitment and behaviors, including:

  • how we teach and train students
  • how students live and learn
  • how faculty, staff and students interact with each other

To this end, the College has devised a list of short-term goals for equity, inclusion and diversity for July 2021 through December 2022. The CHS goals are in alignment with several of VCU's Quest 2025 themes and goals and include strategies and metrics.

Visit the EID Strategic Goals page for further information.

Community Action Council

The overall mission of College of Humanities and Sciences Community Action Council is to advance partnerships between faculty, staff and students within CHS and local community organizations, businesses and governmental entities.

aerial view of the james river, a bridge, and downtown richmond, virginia

The Community Action Council works closely with CHS faculty, staff and students to:

  • set an agenda and prioritize initiatives around community engagement in the community and the College
  • identify disparities and social justice inequities within the community and ways to reduce these
  • provide feedback to administrators, faculty and staff on activities and initiatives related to community engagement
  • identify opportunities for students to work with organizations, and other entities within the metro Richmond community
  • help to identify resources for CHS and community organization

Visit the Community Action Council page to view and learn more about its members.

Units with Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Committees

Contacts: Adam Ewing, Ph.D., and Grace Gipson, Ph.D.

Contacts: Derek Posser, Ph.D., and Wenheng Zhang, Ph.D.

Contact: Charlene Crawley, Ph.D.

Contacts: Shermaine Jones and Shelli Fowler

Contact: Jo Murphy

GSWS Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

The entire department is invested in equity, inclusion and diversity as part of its central mission. Several individuals serve as contacts:



  • Cpt. Ian Ramsey
  • Diane Stewart-Frausto

Contact: Marilyn Bishop, Ph.D.

Contact: Alexandra Reckendorf, Ph.D.

Contact: Meredith Katz, Ph.D.

Contact: Aspen Brinton, Ph.D.


faye belgrave

Check out Dr. Belgrave's curated list of resources from academic and popular media to help CHS faculty and staff incorporate equity, inclusion and diversity into their professions and workplaces.

Equity, Inclusion and Diversity Highlights

Jan. 10, 2022

VCU researcher receives major grant to design and test a comprehensive assessment of sexual health

The grant is the largest in the history of VCU’s Department of Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies.

Winfred Walker. “It is important to understand that you have the power to choose your own path in life.” (Kevin Morley, University Marketing)

Dec. 7, 2021

Class of 2021: Winfred Walker is an advocate for racial equity at VCU and better representation in comics

The College of Humanities and Sciences student aims to help create a more racially just society through his work in the community and his research.

A new Native writer/artist residency program at VCU will honor the late Karenne Wood.

Nov. 29, 2021

Humanities Research Center launches Native writer/artist residency program

The program honors the legacy of Karenne Wood, a member of the Monacan Indian tribe and a poet, activist, tribal historian and educator who lectured at VCU on many occasions.

Equity and inclusion: our core values

Our diversity makes us stronger as a living and learning community, and we strive to create a College that provides meaningful opportunities for all people and that celebrates diverse experiences, backgrounds and perspectives.

College of Humanities and Sciences