Department of Psychology: Diversity and Inclusion Team (DIT)

The Department of Psychology is committed to cultivating and preserving a culture of inclusion and connectedness consistent with policies outlined by Colorado State University and the College of Natural Sciences, including CSU’s Principles of Community. The Department of Psychology believes we can grow and learn better together by being committed to DEI and supporting diverse students and faculty. The collective sum of the individual differences, life experiences, knowledge, innovation, self-expression, and talent that our Psychology community invests in their work represents not only part of our culture, but dictates our reputation. We welcome the unique contributions that everyone brings in terms of their experiences, opinions, culture, ethnicity, race, sex, gender identity and expression, nation of origin, age, languages spoken, veteran’s status, color, religion, disability, sexual orientation, neurodivergence, and beliefs. We are not all the same and that is the department’s greatest strength.

The Diversity and Inclusion Team was enacted to build community by drawing on the department’s commitment to inclusion and acceptance. Inclusion is the actions we take. This committee is composed of members representing undergraduate and graduate students, staff and faculty.

It is the DIT’s intention that our efforts toward inclusion and community, including one-time and annual events, reinforce the Psychology Department’s pledges beyond the impact of the single event experience. All DIT efforts aim to contribute to the development and maintenance of a culture of acknowledgement and connection for all Psychology department members.

Sara Anne Tompkins, Ph.D. (Chair)
Ernie Chavez, Ph.D.
Cassidy McLaren, M.S.
Josh Prasad, Ph.D.
Rachel Brenner, Ph.D.
Eva Urbina, M.A. (Graduate Student Rep)
Shirley Randolph (Undergraduate Student Rep)

DIT Member Introduction

  • Finalize mission statement and distribute to Department of Psychology (faculty/staff/students)
  • Finish and distribute Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) videos of faculty and graduate students to showcase our mission and improve recruitment of more diverse students and faculty
  • Distribute DEI books to faculty/staff and CNS members (department heads/grad and undergrade chairs)
    • Equity in Science: Representation, Culture, and the Dynamics of Change in Graduate Education: Posselt, Julie R.: 9781503612716:
    • Likely host a book club meeting to aid in digestion/discussion/development of action steps based on information and lessons learned from the reading
  • Plan Fall and Spring events – opportunities for community connections among groups of individuals
    • E.g., BIPOC, First generation, LGBTQ+, Neurodivergent….
  • Hold discussions around types of engagement and training we can host/encourage for our faculty and staff members
  • Continue revising our website to increase transparency of our efforts and aid in connection

Pride Resource Center: Safe Zone Training

Safe Zone | Pride Resource Center (colostate.edu)

Best Practices in Teaching at CSU- TILT course

Recommended by Sara Anne Tompkins

  • Course Curriculum: The Best Practices in Teaching at CSU curriculum contains courses on evidence-based effective teaching practices. Topics include:
    • Classroom Climate
    • Learning Outcomes and Course Alignment
    • Create Assignments
    • Grading and Rubrics
    • Inclusive Pedagogy
    • Planning a Class Session
    • Active Learning
    • Student Motivation
    • Supporting Student Success
    • Effective Group Work
    • Critical Thinking
    • Teaching Online
  • Goals of course: Intended to promote open dialogue about teaching among colleagues. Teaching is a complexometric-faceted, often daunting task that is also extremely rewarding. We would like your experience in this course to be comfortable, collaborative, and rewarding, as well.

Trans Day of Visibility

Each year on March 31st Trans Day of Visibility, we celebrate and uplift trans and non-binary individuals here at Colorado State University and around the world by doing our part to create an inclusive, welcoming community today and every day. Statistically, the trans community experiences higher rates of harassment, job discrimination, homelessness, poverty, severe psychological distress, and violent crimes. Our students have shared their concerns about LGBTQIA+ safety on campus. Additionally, in the CSU Climate Survey 2021, employees who identify as trans or non-binary rated work culture lower than the overall university average. We acknowledge there is still much work to do. We are committed to continually improving the experience of LGBTQIA+ folx on campus and will use this data to inform our actions.

Advocates and allies can make a difference to improve the culture on campus and beyond. Start by educating yourself – attend a Safe Zone Training or organize one for your entire unit or student group. Speak out when fellow Rams are subjected to harassment or discrimination. We all have the responsibility to actively uphold the Principles of Community at CSU – inclusion, integrity, respect, service and social justice. Let us work together to make this a better environment for all.

International Holocaust Remembrance Day

Designated by the United Nations, January 27th marks the Soviet Red Army’s liberation of WWII’s largest Nazi concentration and death camp, Auschwitz-Birkenau, in 1945. The theme for this year’s United Nations’ outreach program on the Holocaust is Memory, Dignity, and Justice.

The program leaders remind us that “the writing of history and the act of remembering brings dignity and justice to those the perpetrators of the Holocaust intended to obliterate. Safeguarding the historical record, remembering the victims, challenging the distortion of history often expressed in contemporary antisemitism, are critical aspects of claiming justice after atrocity crimes.”

Apology to People of Color for APA’s Role

Resolution adopted by the APA Council of Representatives on October 29, 2021

“The American Psychological Association failed in its role leading the discipline of psychology, was complicit in contributing to systemic inequities, and hurt many through racism, racial discrimination, and denigration of people of color, thereby falling short on its mission to benefit society and improve lives. APA is profoundly sorry, accepts responsibility for, and owns the actions and inactions of APA itself, the discipline of psychology, and individual psychologists who stood as leaders for the organization and field.”

The structure of this apology focuses on acknowledging the roles of psychology and APA in promoting, perpetuating, and failing to challenge racism, and the harms that have been inflicted on communities of color as a result. It should be noted that this apology is accompanied by a second proposed resolution, “Psychology’s Role in Dismantling Systemic Racism,” which delves more deeply into methods by which psychological science can be used to remedy harms in practice, education, criminal justice, training, and other domains.

Department Diversity and Inclusion Assessment 2019-2020

CSU Diversity Resources

Fall 2020 Community Event

In the Fall 2020 semester, the Psychology Diversity and Inclusion Team hosted a Community Event bringing together faculty, staff, undergraduate and graduate students.  Events included various panels related to research, careers, students organizations along with opportunities for meet and greet moments with our department faculty.  The videos below capture highlights from some of the events we hosted.

Community Event Schedule and Posters

MUGSS and First Generation Panel

Psi Chi and PSA

Psychology and Research

Sharing Lessons Learned from Failure