Come together to advance Equity and Inclusion

An individual at the Juneteenth celebration.

At last Friday’s Juneteenth celebration, several hundred people came together at Corbett Center Student Union’s outdoor stage for an evening that promised to “Celebrate. Educate. Agitate.” The evening was sponsored by NMSU’s Black Student Alliance and Black Programs, in collaboration with the Associated Students of NMSU.

At the beginning of the event, Christopher Brooks, president of NMSU’s Black Student Alliance, said: “… It’s about coming together and celebrating the human experience … we are better when we come together.” So, to echo Christopher’s words, let’s come together NMSU, let’s come together Aggies, let’s take the next steps toward equity and inclusion.
Shortly after we arrived at NMSU, Chancellor Dan Arvizu and I committed to hiring a leader for diversity, inclusion and equity. This leader would help us advance an equitable and inclusive environment, where every person understands that they belong here, an environment where every person is accepted, respected and supported.

Attendees at the first annual Juneteenth celebration held at the Corbett Center Outdoor Stage. This commitment addressed long-standing concerns by some that NMSU’S diversity efforts are more about counting minorities than achieving equity. These days, we are living through historic times, challenged to move beyond rhetoric to action. Despite the financial crisis in the state, we must seize this moment to move forward with a search for this leader.

The position will be charged with advancing a culture of inclusion, diversity, equity, access and mutual respect throughout NMSU. We will be seeking thought-leaders and practitioners experienced in building collaborative and trusting relationships among students, faculty, staff and leadership. We will be seeking leaders who can work with various parts of the university — such as Provost’s office, student affairs, public safety, human resources, facilities, research, academic colleges, community colleges and institutional administration — in order to create a better, more inclusive NMSU.

The search for this leader begins today with a request for nominations for members, including a chair of the search committee. Many people at NMSU have demonstrated their commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion. For service on this committee, we need those people who are knowledgeable about diversity and leadership, and who are willing to take an active role in the recruitment, search and screening process.

Please send your nominations, including self-nominations, for this committee to before Wednesday, July 8. In your nomination, please confirm the person is willing to serve in this capacity and include a brief paragraph synthesizing the nominee’s ability to contribute to this process. The committee will start meeting in July with the goal of welcoming a new leader for diversity, equity and inclusion to campus late in 2020 or early in the new year.

Be Bold, Be Kind, Be Safe.

Go Aggies!

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