Commitment to Inclusiveness, Equity, Diversity and Social Justice

Commitment to Inclusiveness, Equity, Diversity and Social Justice
Goal 2 of the UMD Strategic Plan
In 2011, UMD adopted a new Strategic Plan. One of the core values comprising the foundation for the University's mission is Inclusiveness, to "respect and embrace the diversity of individuals, perspectives, and ideas and strive for social justice." The core values guided the development of the Strategic Goals and related Action Items. Goal 2 of the UMD Strategic Plan is to "Create a positive and inclusive campus climate for all by advancing equity, diversity, and social justice." In the Fall 2011 semester, the Campus Change Team (CCT) was charged with Action Item #1: "Create a campus definition of equity, diversity, and social justice and share these understandings with all students, staff, and faculty." After numerous iterations and feedback obtained from the Campus Change Leadership Team and the Unit Change Teams, the CCT presents the central principles of the campus commitment that guided the development process and the definitions.

The Campus Commitment

UMD's Proposed Vision for 2020 is to integrate equity, diversity, inclusion, and social justice into all aspects of campus life and learning through an intentional, clear, caring, and restorative manner. In doing so, we create a more just, integrated educational community that celebrates all human difference. In order to create an environment that is physically and psychologically safe for students, staff, and faculty, we must work to eliminate the structural and interpersonal barriers that limit the opportunities for underrepresented and underserved groups.

We recognize and understand that populations have been marginalized and intentionally excluded from equal opportunities, and that these groups have experienced discriminatory treatment.

We reject hatred and intolerance that harms diverse individuals or groups and threatens the inclusiveness of the UMD environment.

Through our decisions and our behaviors, we will embrace diversity, provide for equitable treatment, and strive for social justice for all students, staff, and faculty who learn, work, and live at UMD.

Definitions of Equity, Diversity, and Social Justice

Goal 2, Action Step 1


Equity provides opportunities and access to all that the University has to offer so that every person can achieve their full potential. Equitable treatment involves acknowledging diversity, recognizing and celebrating our differences, and eliminating the barriers that prevent the full participation of all peoples. 


UMD is an inclusive, welcoming, and respectful community of people with varying human characteristics, ideas, cultural practices, belief systems, worldviews, identities, experiences, and demographic differences. Diversity is an institutional and societal asset that is fundamental to all that we do and is the foundation of excellence. In this diverse community it is our responsibility to value and respect all individuals and to serve all groups, regardless of protection by law, including but not limited to groups identified by:
● age
● appearance
● citizenship or national origin
● employment classification
● ethnicity
● gender
● gender identity or gender expressions
● language
● marital or family status
● race
● religion, faith, or spirituality
● sexual orientation
● socio-economic status
● veteran status
● visible or invisible disabilities

Social Justice

Social justice requires that the entire University community create a culture of excellence grounded in equity and diversity that supports individuals and groups who face bias, discrimination, and exclusionary activities prohibiting them from achieving their full potential. The goal of social justice is an environment at UMD that provides physical and psychological security by facilitating full and equitable participation for all. Furthermore, social justice compels us to be vigilant, seek out, and eliminate systemic barriers that prevent the realization of a “positive and inclusive campus climate for all."