12 news posts related to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

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New direction for UW Botanic Gardens focuses on diversity, equity and inclusion

The New Directions in Public Gardens speaker series started in May and will conclude with the final speaker on Sept. 20.

Botanical gardens historically are exclusive spaces, but the University of Washington is working to change that. Many gardens originated as private spaces for predominantly white and wealthy individuals, said UW Botanic Gardens director Christina Owen. The collections were often curated through a process of stealing and renaming before the gardens were gifted as land to cities and universities. “There’s a history of colonialism in many botanic gardens,” said Owen. 

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Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at UW Atmospheric Sciences

students walking through campus

The UW Department of Atmospheric Sciences strives to create an inclusive and welcoming environment where students, staff and faculty are supported and set up for success. Department Chair Cecilia Bitz has prioritized Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) initiatives, citing her personal work history as a motivator to create an equitable environment. “Diversity is so important to me personally because when I started my career, women were definitely a minority,” she said. 

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Diversity, equity and inclusion at the Program on the Environment

students walking through campus

​​​​How do we accomplish change that lasts, especially with complex issues such as diversity, equity and inclusion? That question lies at the heart of conversations that have been occurring over the past two years in University of Washington’s Program on the Environment (PoE). PoE is an interdisciplinary undergraduate program where students study and reflect upon intersections of the environment and human societies, and the primary unit in the College of the Environment offering a Bachelor of Arts degree. 

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DEI at the School of Oceanography

Guy on buoy in water

“Our community acknowledges that we must work to address the culture of white supremacy in our department and in the geosciences as a whole. We must ensure that racial and gender microaggressions, exclusion, bullying, and discriminatory remarks are addressed as pervasive, systemic issues.” The School of Oceanography’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Statement of Acknowledgement recognizes the lack of racial diversity in the geosciences, citing a study that found little to no progress on that front over the past four decades. 

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