The Office of Inclusion & Internationalization
The Office of Inclusion & Internationalization is in the College of Education at the University of Kentucky. This office begins its work with a land acknowledgement and labor acknowledgement statement for the College. A land acknowledgment statement is an expression of appreciation and gratitude to those on whose territory we occupy, and recognizes and respects Native peoples as the traditional guardians of the land. Kentucky, which became the fifteenth state in 1792, is on the dispossessed territory of many First Nations/Native American peoples, including the Adena, Cherokee-East, Hopewell, Osage, Shawnee, and Yuchi people. The University of Kentucky is built on these dispossessed lands. Our labor acknowledgment statement identifies and honors the crucial role of enslaved people who helped to build the University of Kentucky on these dispossessed lands. We acknowledge and give thanks to the enslaved people who built UK and their descendants. May we continue our mission to create a community of belonging and commitment to excellence as the University for Kentucky in honor of those who walked and labored here before us.
The Office of Inclusion & Internationalization uses a Justice, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion & Internationalization framework to enhance the academic experience of College of Education students through the development and management of co-curricular activities. In the college, faculty, staff, and administrative personnel advance traditional Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion (DEI) initiatives with an explicit focus on 1) promoting Justice and 2) expansion of these initiatives to international populations. The Office of Inclusion & Internationalization sponsors several programs within the College of Education with the following goals:
- Maintain a supportive and inclusive environment for College of Education students from the time of their enrollment through graduation;
- Intellectually connect and engage students with all aspects of the College’s programs and initiatives, the Lexington community, the Commonwealth of Kentucky, the US, and countries abroad;
- Create a vibrant community of discipline-specific student programming (i.e., student organizations, undergraduate and graduate certificate program, professional speaker series) that provide all students with mentoring and support throughout their professional development and current career decisions;
- Provide opportunities for all students to seek Justice for marginalized populations, promote Equity through critical self-reflection and awareness, foster Diversity through intentional Inclusive practices, and ensure these practices and mindsets extend beyond the US to International student populations.
All programs and activities supported by the Office of Inclusion & Internationalization are geared towards success of all students, regardless of race, nationality, gender, sexual orientation, geographical location, language, age, class, religion, and disability. Each of the academic units within the College of Education have established mission statements that align with the College’s JEDII framework (see links below).
Along with exploring the many diversity resources offered by the College of Education, visit the UK Diversity Plan page (see link below) for information and links to programs, activities, institutional diversity plans, initiatives and data that focus on the University’s commitment to diversity and inclusion.
The College of Education is committed to providing initial and advanced candidates with educational experiences that prepare them to work constructively in a racially and culturally-diverse society and global community. To this end, the College of Education works collaboratively with national, state, and local education agencies, state and community governments, community groups, and professional organizations to respond to the educational needs of the Commonwealth. With these efforts, the College of Education recognizes the increasing diversity of the population of learners in American and Kentucky classrooms and the concomitant need for program candidates, faculty, field experiences, and curricula to reflect this diversity. The College of Education maintains a goal of designing undergraduate and graduate education programs that provide candidates with broad, comprehensive experiences and opportunities to develop the knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors necessary to meet the needs of all students. Through continuous assessment, the College also seeks to evaluate and respond through programmatic changes to the changing needs of its students, Kentucky, and the nation.
Experiences Working with Diverse Students in P-12 Schools
Program faculty review the schools and other settings (e.g., childcare centers for early childhood majors) used for student observations, practica, and student teaching. The schools are in urban, suburban, and rural settings, include marginalized student populations (i.e., African American, Latinx, LGBTQ, economically marginalized, physically disabled and neurodiverse students), and offer programs (e.g., Gifted/Talented, Special Education, Literacy, Conflict Resolution) that address the needs of diverse student populations.
The College of Education has established effective collaborations with local school districts. Field experiences are coordinated between program faculty and the Office of Clinical Practices and School Partnerships to provide broad experiences with diverse populations and settings within and beyond Fayette County Schools (the district where the University of Kentucky is located).
The College of Education seeks to provide its candidates with opportunities to understand and value the many aspects of diversity. Through curriculum and field experiences, candidates demonstrate the use of diverse methodologies in teaching students with diverse learning styles. Candidates also reflect on their own understanding of differences and the impact of these differences on their personal dispositions and behaviors as educators and community members. Building on this critical reflection, candidates specifically and College of Education graduates generally exercise their capacity to create inclusive learning contexts for diverse learners, while also seeking equity and justice for students educated within the Commonwealth and abroad.
Experiences Working with Diverse Faculty
The College of Education is committed to the recruitment and retention of a diverse faculty. Beginning in 1989, a University-wide initiative provided additional funding to improve the unit’s ability to recruit a diverse faculty. This University initiative enabled the College of Education to achieve diversification of its faculty. From 1989-95, the number of minority faculty members in the College of Education increased from three to sixteen. The number of full-time female faculty also increased during this period. In 2021, the College of Education is the academic home for nearly 25% of all faculty across the academic ranks (i.e., Clinical, Tenure-Track, & Tenured Assistant Professors, Associate Professors, & Professors). Additionally, the college continues to explore methods for closing the gender wage gap, nearly a $1000 differential between the two gender groups.
Department of Early Childhood Education, Special Education, & Counselor Education
The mission of the Department of Early Childhood, Special Education and Counselor Education is to prepare educators and counselors to promote evidence and competency-based instruction, advocacy, and inclusion of individuals with diverse needs across the lifespan through research and collaboration with other professionals and agencies.
Department of Kinesiology & Health Promotion
The Department of Kinesiology and Health Promotion understands that when we value forms of diversity (e.g., race, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, age, social class, ability, religion, etc.) we become more innovative and better prepared to face racial and social justice issues in our respective fields.
- We are committed to a self-reflexive practice in order to cultivate a diverse and inclusive environment and experience for our faculty, staff, and students where everyone has the opportunity to pursue their passion and express their true selves;
- We reject the perpetuation of bias and dehumanizing practices on the basis of race, ethnicity, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, age, social class, ability, religion, or any other attributes;
- Diversity and inclusion are principles upon which our KHP community stands and we value the importance of inclusion and the power of learning from diverse perspectives and experiences.
Department of Educational Policy Studies & Evaluation
Educational Policy Studies and Evaluation is an interdisciplinary department in which historical, philosophical, socio-cultural, economic, and comparative/international perspectives are brought to the study of educational trends, policies, and issues, from preschool to graduate and adult education. Our focus on research methods is a hallmark of our department. We have a strong tradition of field studies in education, emphasizing ethnographic, historical, and context-based research. In addition, we have offerings in advanced educational statistics, measurement, and evaluation approaches. We offer masters and doctoral degree programs, as well as graduate certificates, for students interested in both academic and applied careers, encouraging students to design a program of study that meets their individual interests. We have both full- and part-time students, and our graduates work in diverse educational and community settings both within and outside of the U.S.
Department of Science, Technology, Engineering, & Mathematics Education
We strive to engage in innovative research, scholarship, teaching, and service with a commitment to equity and social justice in STEM education. In collaboration with students, schools, and the community, we aim to broaden participation in STEM by cultivating authentic engagement in high quality P20 science, technology, engineering, and mathematics education in the Commonwealth, nation, and world.
Department of Educational, School, & Counseling Psychology
The Department of Educational, School, & Counseling Psychology has established a policy on social justice in course coverage and content. The policy affirms our commitment to integrating aspects of diverse scholarship and experience into the body of knowledge covered by each course. We define diversity very broadly to include issues related to age, sex, gender, race, culture, ethnicity, sexual identity, gender identity and presentation, socioeconomic status, and disability or ableness. This commitment is reflected in our course content, scholarly pursuits, and research. The Department faculty make every effort to consider this commitment and seek ways to integrate some aspects of social justice into each course. Faculty may use various methods to achieve this aim in their courses.
Department of Curriculum & Instruction
The Department of Curriculum and Instruction is committed to advancing social justice through research, teaching, and service alongside the students and communities we serve. We engage in reflective practices to prepare educators, researchers, and professionals to build a more equitable world.
Department of Education Leadership Studies
The University of Kentucky (UK) rests on the dispossessed lands of the Cherokee, Chickasaw, Osage, and Shawnee people. With recognition and respect, we live and work in these ancestral lands, as well as those of the Delaware, Mosopelea, Wyandot, and Yuchi people.
The faculty and staff of the Department of Educational Leadership Studies (EDL) at the University of Kentucky recognize significant and unimaginable acts of violence and injustice have occurred both in the past and present to Black, Indigenous, and other People of Color (BIPOC), LGBTQ+, women, gender-nonconforming persons, people of faith, and Appalachian peoples. Our hope is to prepare students who lead educational communities dedicated to diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice. Deficit narratives have led to decreased social support, continued segregation, over-policing, and a state of colorblindness and neutrality that is dangerous. We stand in solidarity with our historically excluded, oppressed, othered, enslaved, and persecuted families, friends, and neighbors whose pain is too deep, too long, and too often denied. We affirm that Black Lives Matter, and recognize the intersections invoked with this explication of justice while renouncing white supremacy.
We recognize that there is work to be done; therefore, we continue to consider ways injustice exists within our community, in addition to working, teaching, and learning environments. As we do so, we will bring awareness to not only those historical injustices (which permeate society), but to the historical injustices that reinforce contemporary oppressions and injustices inside and outside of our classrooms.
We commit to:
- Incorporating anti-racist content into our program curricula and syllabi.
- Confirming the inclusion of diverse voices in our course readings and with our invited speakers.
- Participating in professional learning to develop our own personal awareness, understanding and consciousness of racial and other systemic and institutional inequities, and facilitating difficult conversations around racial and social injustice.
- Discontinuing use of the GRE in the admission process given its limitations and weaknesses in determining student success in graduate school.
- Adopting evidence-based practices which promote a diverse and talented student body.
- Reinforcing the fact that leadership to advance diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice matters in our courses and with our actions.
Our Department of Educational Leadership Studies at the University of Kentucky is dedicated to being increasingly aware of inequities and discrimination, becoming more diversified, and contributing to the work underway.
University of Kentucky DEI Campus Resource Pages
University of Kentucky Office of Institutional Diversity
University of Kentucky Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion Leadership Team. UK Faculty, students, and staff engaged in shaping strategic efforts that reflect and promote greater diversity, equity, & inclusion throughout UK campus.
Comprehensive UK campus-wide resources ranging from academic student services and support resources to diversity-based offices and centers and college-based academic departments and centers.
UK Libraries webpage for access to free DEI-based e-books.
The Martin Luther King Center seeks to empower University of Kentucky students across identities to improve their college experience by promoting access to academic, civic leadership, and cultural exchange opportunities rooted in Dr. King’s philosophy. The Center provides a campus-wide “brave space” for civic dialogue and community building. We advocate for under-served students populations to develop their cultural identity without fear of harassment and with the support of others striving to do the same.
Center for Equality and Social Justice promotes equality and social justice through collaborative scholarship and education and to help advocate for social justice within our communities, public policies, and laws.
UK’s Center for Graduate and Professional Diversity Initiatives seeks recruitment of diverse graduate and professional students in UK’s six health colleges and retaining diverse graduate and professional students in all nineteen colleges, thereby contributing to an inclusive campus environment.
UK hub of student-based campus organizations, societies, and associations, including DEI-based student organizations
LGBTQ* resources is associated with the UK Office of Student Success
The UK Human Development Institute seeks to build inclusive communities, address inequities, and improve the lives of all people who experience disability across the lifespan. Its vision includes the full participation and contribution of all people with disabilities in all aspects of society.
University of Kentucky International Center (UKIC) leads broad internationalization efforts (teaching, research, & service) and is supported by UK’s International Advisory Council.
The UK Office of China Initiatives provides opportunities for students & faculty to engage with China through partnership development and cultivation of a holistic educational experience for students of Chinese descent while growing UK’s brand & alumni network in China.
UK webpage sponsored by the Religious Advisors Staff designed to connect students with their established faith tradition or investigate a new one.
University of Kentucky Employee Affinity groups comprised of faculty and staff and with goals of ensuring an inclusive UK campus and providing a collective voice among group members with shared interests and perspectives.
The UK Disability Resource Center is housed within the Office for Student Success and provides diagnostic and accommodative services to the members of UK community with disabilities, thereby facilitating and maximizing participation in all aspects of campus life.
University of Kentucky College of Education DEI Resources Pages
Education and Civil Rights Initiative (ECRI) is a collaboration between the University of Kentucky College of Education and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). The research-based initiative seeks to address issues of inequity
Department of Educational Leadership Studies (EDL) statement on Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Justice (DEIJ) in Solidarity.
Department of Educational, School, & Counseling Psychology mission statement on Social Justice
Educational Psychology Program Statement on Social Justice Approach to Educational Psychology
School Psychologists for Social Justice action statements.
University of Kentucky College of Education International Partnerships (under construction)
University of Kentucky College of Education Justice, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, & Internationalization Initiatives Google Docs
Justice, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion & Internationalization Initiatives Definitions, Justifications, and Guidelines
Live Document for UK College of Education Justice, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion & Internationalization Initiatives Internet Resources—Organized Alphabetically by Topic
Live Document for UK College of Education Justice, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion & Internationalization Initiatives Social Media Resources—Organized by Topic
Live Document for UK College of Education Justice, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion & Internationalization Initiatives Training and Activist Opportunities (newest to oldest)