Diversity and Inclusion in Hiring Processes
For the Bowling Green State University Community
The work of our faculty and staff is at the core of our educational mission and positions Bowling Green State University (BGSU) to create public good to serve Ohio and beyond. We must continue to power the public good through our people, and we believe that diversity and inclusion immeasurably enrich all that we do to engage, understand and respect individuals. Beginning May 1, 2021, we started a pilot program wherein applicants for faculty and administrative staff positions provided their own unique perspectives on their past, present and future aspirations and contributions to promoting equity, diversity, and inclusion in their professional careers. This process was optional for classified staff positions. Beginning May 25, 2022, we transitioned rather to ask a question of all faculty and administrative staff job candidates in the on-campus interview process.
At BGSU, we are looking to hire individuals who support the University’s mission and values. We are looking for applicants who can help us enhance our community of inclusion and belonging which includes respect for others and an openness to differing perspectives and identities. As members of a search committee, you will note here and in the search committee training that you should not score someone poorly because you do not share their perspective. Just as teaching and research are tenets of our community, diversity and belonging are equally important to the success of our community and its members.
As a part of our strategic plan, we share that:
“We aspire to be an engaged learning community where each member belongs and is inspired to achieve excellence. For us to become the community we aspire to be, we must become more diverse, inclusive and curious. Additionally, we aspire to be a student-centered learning community and are guided by this focus in our decision-making.”
Our faculty and administrators already demonstrate a commitment to our strategic plan in many ways. By asking applicants their perspective on one of the specific prompts, we are not looking for their commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion to produce ideological conformity. We are looking to build upon the many valuable ways our faculty and staff have contributed to BGSU’s vision, including our commitment to an inclusive learning community that develops, transforms and impacts individuals and communities through learning, collaboration and discovery. You do this by:
- Focusing on our contributions to the public good
- Creating programs that provide access and opportunities to each student
- Enriching the curricular and co-curricular learning environment through providing exposure to new perspectives on cultures, beliefs or practices, or the teaching of cultural humility or other aptitudes and skills to enhance the ability of our students to engage with inclusivity in a pluralistic society.
- Exposing students to research opportunities for individuals historically excluded from disciplines on the basis of identity
- Promoting university resources to assist with retention and to serve as transformative role models for those who may not yet understand or have been undersold on their real potential in an academic environment
During the on-campus interview process, the committee is looking for your perspective on the specific prompt given. For example; you may speak about your experience working with campus or local community members on furthering a goal of equity and inclusion. Through your own answer, you will address your knowledge or contributions to equity, diversity, and inclusion in your past or present work. This answer is used to determine potential contributions to BGSU’s mission and strategic plan. We are not looking for applicants to express any specific ideologies, we are trying to understand how or if at all equity, diversity, and/or inclusion within the professional setting have shaped your perspective on the issue and how applicants will contribute to BGSU’s desire to prepare all students to contribute as active and engaged members of a diverse and multicultural world and workforce. We encourage applicants to not feel limited by the prompt. If you have creative ideas for future activities that will contribute to BGSU, please feel free to share those as well, and specifically how and when you would like to implement them in our university community. BGSU’s commitment to diversity and belonging is not aimed at producing ideological conformity. We remain committed to sustaining an academic environment built on the free exchange of ideas and viewpoints. As Bowling Green State University’s Freedom of Expression policy, most recently updated on July 8, 2021 notes, BGSU strictly prohibits infringement of First Amendment rights. Further affirmation of our ardent commitment to these rights is demonstrated by BGSU’s implementation of the Ohio Public Policy on Principles of Free Speech on January 9, 2023 and on the University’s Freedom of Expression website. These policies provide information and resources for all campus constituents regarding academic freedom and expressive activity.
For the BGSU Community and its Applicants
Membership in the BGSU academic community imposes on students, faculty staff, and other leaders of this institution an obligation to respect each other’s dignity; to acknowledge each other’s right to express differing opinions; to cultivate belonging; and to promote freedom of inquiry and expression on and off the campus. Our commitment to diversity and belonging strives for a community in which all members are and feel respected, valued, affirmed, can participate and achieve to their potential, including those with marginalized and minoritized identities. Therefore, our evaluation of a candidate’s response to a diversity-related question will be viewpoint-neutral. BGSU does not engage in unlawful discrimination in the context of hiring decisions, including the ideological beliefs or viewpoints of the candidate or a perception of such beliefs or viewpoints. BGSU is committed to an equitable and inclusive environment where all belong and an environment free from unlawful discrimination and that promotes freedom of inquiry and expression.
*This language has been adapted from Virginia Commonwealth University
Updated: 04/28/2023 01:09PM