We Are Dedicated to Repairing Injustice and Fostering Inclusion
The Rice Business Task Force on Racial Equity and Social Justice is charged with researching, evaluating and recommending actions to be taken by Rice Business to promote racial equity and social justice. The actions recommended by the task force will be advanced through our teaching mission, the use of our convening power for discussions among members of our community and with leaders of organizations, the delivery of educational experiences that acknowledge and address issues of injustice in society and the support and promotion of research on matters of diversity and inclusion.
In July, Dean Rodriguez established the Rice Business Task Force on Racial Equity and Social Justice and charged them with assisting him in answering and addressing the following questions:
• What must we do to ensure that our curriculum, programs, courses, research and scholarship, and external engagement promote inclusion and confront and repair injustice?
• What actions should we take to assure all members of the Rice Business community that they matter, are equally valued, and are seen and safe?
• What must we do to ensure that our institution properly answers the call to improve our world by strengthening organizations, contributing positively to society, and fostering fruitful coexistence in our communities?
In October, the task force presented the dean with 33 recommendations. These detailed recommendations are meant to improve the racial environment at Rice Business and at the university. The dean has responded to the task force and implementation is under review.
President Leebron’s email to the Rice community in November outlined the progress on the university’s commitment to address the calls for racial equity and social justice for the good of the institution and betterment of the nation. From advanced training for staff, students and faculty — which begins in the spring — to faculty hiring, curriculum, student recruitment and newly defined positions, the university is focused on growth and change.
In December, the task force recommended that a new position leading our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion efforts be created and that this leader report directly to the dean. This new office of DEI will be officially announced before the end of January and will be appropriately staffed and funded with at least two appointed leadership roles. With this leadership team, we will further open this important conversation to the community to generate broader engagement.
As we align with the university and their commitments, our intention is to grow and learn and improve the environment at Rice Business for students, staff, faculty, alumni and all who enter McNair Hall to participate in a class or event. We want to include more diverse members on our council and faculty, add more diverse content in our curriculum, and educate our students to be stronger leaders in a diverse world. Join us as we continue this vital journey.