The Excellence in Diversity Awards
UPPS No. 04.04.37
Issue No. 3
Effective Date: 6/08/2015
Next Review Date: 9/01/2020 (E5Y)
Sr. Reviewer: Chief Diversity Officer and Director, Equity and Access
These policy statements set forth guidelines for the Excellence in Diversity Awards at Texas State University.
In this context, we define “diversity” broadly to include such factors as geographic backgrounds, ages, genders, educational backgrounds, employment experiences, language abilities, economic backgrounds, cultures, and special skills and talents. We also believe that race and ethnicity are socially significant characteristics and that there will be occasions when a person’s experiences will be affected by his or her race or ethnicity. The terms “race” and “ethnicity” are not limited and include persons from all races and ethnic backgrounds. We consider race or ethnicity as merely one factor in our overall efforts to diversify our faculty, staff, and students, to be applied in limited circumstances only when the experiences of race or ethnicity contribute significantly to a diversity of ideas.
The Excellence in Diversity Awards program is established to honor university community members and one team for exceptional commitment to diversity at Texas State. These awards will recognize and reward faculty and staff members for activities that promote the university’s diversity goals and the impact of those activities.
The university will present three awards each year: one to a faculty member, one to a staff member, and the third to a team. Individual recipients and the team will receive a $2,500 monetary award (less taxes) and a plaque funded through the Office of Equity and Access. All nominees will receive a letter from the chief diversity officer and director of Equity and Access congratulating them on their nomination.
The president will present the awards at the annual fall University Convocation. In addition, the chief diversity officer and director of Equity and Access will host a fall reception with the recipients and a guest, nominees, the Equity and Access Committee, and senior academic administrators (President’s Cabinet, Council of Academic Deans, Council of Chairs, officers of Staff Council, officers of Faculty Senate, as well as members of the selection committee). The Equity and Access Committee, in consultation with the President’s Office, will also extend an invitation to all individuals, groups and offices that have a diversity-related functional role.
Applying the definition of “diversity” in Section 01.02, the selection committee will use the following criteria to select recipients for the awards:
* nominee’s critical support that assists diversity efforts with our faculty, staff or students (Note: if the nominee’s primary job duties are related to diversity, the selection committee will consider those activities beyond the normal scope of their duties);
* nominee’s sustained commitment to diversity through research, programs, services, activities, new initiatives, etc. (Note: if the nominee’s primary job duties are related to diversity, the selection committee will consider those activities beyond the normal scope of their duties); and
nominee’s commitment to university values as reflected by a record of compliance with university policies.
Staff - any employee other than a student employee or a faculty employee as defined in The Texas State University System Rules and Regulations of the Board of Regents. The University Pay Plan assigns a title to staff employees.
Faculty - those employees with a specified academic rank holding a teaching appointment for a fixed term as determined by the president and approved by the Board of Regents (Chapter V, Section 4).
Team - two or more individuals.
To determine whether an employee is staff or faculty, please refer to the titles listed in the University Pay Plan.
PROCEDURES FOR APPOINTING THE SELECTION COMMITTEE
No later than January 31, the associate provost and the chief diversity officer and director of Equity and Access will appoint a selection committee to identify recipients for the awards for the current fiscal year, comprised of the following:
chief diversity officer and director of Equity and Access (committee chair);
director of the Center for Diversity and Gender Studies;
one graduate assistant nominated by the dean of The Graduate College;
assistant vice president for Student Affairs/director of the Office of Student Diversity and Inclusion;
two representatives-at-large from the university: a faculty member nominated by Faculty Senate and a staff member nominated by Staff Council;
one representative selected from each of the following groups, each serving two-year terms: Alliance of Texas State, Hispanic Policy Network, Coalition of Black Faculty and Staff, and the President’s Council for Women in Higher Education;
director of the Office of Disability Services;
previous year faculty recipient; and
previous year staff recipient.
The chair will convene the selection committee for its first meeting by February. At that meeting, the selection committee will review the criteria for the awards and make any necessary changes. The provost must approve substantive changes.
By February, the chair of the selection committee will inform the provost that the selection process has begun.
PROCEDURES FOR THE NOMINATION PROCESS
A timeline of the nomination process, including dates and activities, is available here.
Self nominations are accepted.
PROCEDURES FOR DOCUMENTATION OF THE AWARD
The documentation that accompanies each Excellence in Diversity Nomination Form should include the following:
Completed nomination form, which should include reasons for the nomination, the period over which the activities have occurred, and address the selection criteria;
* a brief professional sketch, that includes the nominee’s present position and position description, of the individual nominee or, if nominating a team, a brief professional sketch of each team member (please do not submit a full vita or résumé); and
letters of support from colleagues, co-workers, and students (recommend no more than a total of three).
THE SELECTION AND AWARD PROCESS
A timeline of the selection and award process, including dates and activities, is available here.
By April, the selection committee will review the nominations, basing its selections on the criteria outlined in Section 03. The selection committee will present its choices in each category to the full Equity and Access Committee for consideration. The Equity and Access Committee will rank its first, second, and third choices for each category. Only Equity and Access Committee members in attendance at the meeting may vote.
By May 1, the Equity and Access Committee will forward its choices to the president via the provost for selection of recipients. The Committee will not recommend awards if there are no qualified nominees for that year. A copy of the nomination form and packet for each person will accompany the list of finalists.
The president will send a personal letter to each recipient by August announcing his or her award and asking the recipients to walk onto the stage to receive their awards at the fall University Convocation. The president will also send an administrative memo to the university community by August 15 announcing the recipients.
University News Services will prepare and distribute the appropriate news releases.
REVIEWERS OF THIS UPPS
Reviewers of this UPPS include the following:
Position Date Chief Diversity Officer and Director of Equity and Access September 1 E5Y Associate Provost September 1 E5Y Special Assistant to the President September 1 E5Y
This UPPS has been approved by the following individuals in their official capacities and represents Texas State policy and procedure from the date of this document until superseded.
Chief Diversity Officer and Director of Equity and Access; senior reviewer of this UPPS
Special Assistant to the President