January 2023 D I and A Digest Header

Despite the chilly January we’ve collectively experienced, things are really starting to heat up in Mines DI&A. As you will read in this month’s digest, we are launching into reporting season. For many academic departments and major campus units, this means diversity committees are gathering around conference tables to reflect on and summarize outcomes on goals they have made and iterated on since 2019 when diversity implementation plans were first introduced. These meetings are running in parallel with prep for the Celebration of DI&A at Mines poster session where units and departments will share their top goals and progress made to date in a succinct display. If you are within your first year at Mines and diversity progress reports are new to you, we encourage you to spend a little time with the reports that were submitted last year. This consolidated workbook allows you to see quickly where folks are focusing their efforts to foster a more inclusive, diverse and welcoming campus community. If you are interested in joining your units or departments’ diversity team, contributing ideas or identifying campus collaborators, please reach out to someone on the Mines DI&A team. We are happy to connect you to individuals who are leading diversity efforts in their respective units.

Dr. Amy E. Landis, Tammy Curry, Heather Houlton, Kelly Knechtel and Arielle Rainey
Mines DI&A 

Save the date: Annual Celebration of DI&A at Mines

In the spring semester, we set aside time for all of campus to gather to learn about progress on the Mines DI&A Strategic Plan, share updates on 40 academic department and campus units’ diversity plan goals and engage in learning and skill development opportunities at the Celebration of DI&A at Mines. This year’s event is held on Monday, April 3, 9:00 AM-4:00 PM in the Green Center. The call for workshop proposals closed this week, and 18 interactive sessions were submitted by the Oredigger community. The Celebration includes a Keynote lunch and closing reception. The event’s schedule will be released next month. At that time, you will be able to register for the activities and workshops that interest you most. The 2023 Celebration is sponsored by Aera, CACI, Chevron and Shell.

NEW! Poster session added to Celebration of DI&A at Mines

In lieu of progress report flash talks, each department and campus unit that submits a diversity progress report (there are nearly 40 participating depts/units!) is required to complete a poster highlighting their goals, their alignment with the Mines DI&A strategic plan and the outcome/impact of those efforts. Diversity committee members can access the poster template on the Celebrations’ webpage. These posters will be displayed on April 3, 11:00-11:45 AM in the Green Center Lobby and staffed by a dept/unit representative so community members can ask questions and explore future collaborations. Departments and units are encouraged to display posters in a shared area in their respective buildings after the Celebration for others to see. Posters are due to Mines DI&A team by March 6 to meet printing deadline.

Join a virtual brainstorming session for Mines’ ADVANCE proposal

The NSF ADVANCE program is a major opportunity to bring funding to Mines to support the implementation of evidence-based systemic change strategies that promote equity for STEM faculty at STEM campuses. The first deadlines of the year are coming up soon (April 27, 2023 is the deadline for an Institutional Transformation preliminary proposal, should that be the track that is pursued). As an institution, Mines is allowed to submit only one application across all four tracks. The approach must be institution wide. As such, the Research & Tech Transfer Office and Mines DI&A would like to invite anyone who is interested in participating in an ADVANCE proposal to join a virtual brainstorming session via Zoom on Thursday, February 9, 10:00-11:00 AM. This session will build upon ideas already generated by the DI&A Council. If you cannot attend but would like to be engaged, the session will be recorded, and you are welcome to send follow-up thoughts and ideas to avonlehmanlopez@mines.edu. Please feel free to review the summary of the solicitation including the distinctions between the four tracks and the full solicitation:

Changes made to annual diversity progress report timeline

If you are a regular attendee of the Mines DI&A General Council meeting each month, you are aware of the changes to the timeline and reporting requirements for the annual diversity progress reports each department and major campus unit completes. Reports are due April 21. A small team of reviewers will provide feedback on each submission and return recommended changes, additions and considerations for the 2023-2024 report by May 15. If the department’s diversity committee chooses not to incorporate the considerations or edits by June 2, all reports and review committee’s feedback will be sent to VPs and President Johnson by June 5. Questions about this process or reporting in general can be sent directly to Heather Houlton.

2023 Due Dates

  • Week of February 6th: Instructions for investigating your DI&A data in Tableau Server
  • Friday, April 21st: Implementation Plan progress reports due to DI&A team and committee
  • Monday, May 15th: Reviews finished and comments sent back to units
  • Friday, June 2nd: New this year – Your department can choose to re-submit the report based on feedback. This is not required and if you only submit one report, your original submission will be used.
  • Monday, June 5th: Reports sent to PCJ and VPs


Reviewers needed for diversity progress reports

Are you searching for another opportunity to engage with the Mines DI&A team? We’re opening a call for 5-8 volunteers to be on a small review committee to evaluate this year’s diversity progress reports. Each person on the committee will have the opportunity to read between eight and ten progress reports, provide their feedback and discuss the top submissions with other committee members. This review process will take place April 24-May 12. If you are interested in participating in this effort, please contact Heather Houlton at hhoulton@mines.edu by Monday, February 6.

SPUR update

The Strategies Promoting Undergraduate Retention (SPUR) survey is underway! This survey is exploring the factors that impact undergraduate retention and has a focus on students from underrepresented backgrounds. We are seeking to learn from the experiences of students who have withdrawn, at any point, from Mines, or from those who may have considered withdrawing. The survey will stay open until February 17.

A special request for Faculty and Staff – Do you know of a student who may be a good candidate for this survey? Please contact Arielle Rainey ariellerainey@mines.edu and she will connect with the student to explain the project and invite them to participate. We look forward to learning directly from our students about how we can create a campus environment where everyone can thrive.


Student organization spotlight: Mines Without Borders

Mines Without Borders (MWB) is a chapter of Engineers Without Borders, USA (EWB-USA). MWB partners with communities to design and implement sustainable engineering projects while creating transformative experiences and responsible leaders. The organization consists of an executive board and the Haitian Water Pump, Solar and Water Project teams. MWB consistently explores opportunities to broaden their reach and education within the sustainable and socially responsible engineering world. By partnering with the Humanitarian Engineering department, MWB brings these experiences to campus.

Over winter break, the Water Project team travelled to Los Gomez, Nicaragua to check-in on their project. While there, the team continued to experience a community of collaboration. They sharpened their engineering, listening and leadership skills, and brought back valuable knowledge on socially responsible development and diversity, inclusion and access to incorporate into future projects.

MWB’s biggest event for the spring semester is their annual gala on March 10, 2023, 6:00-8:30 PM in Friedhoff Hall. This comeback gala includes fun activities, prizes and an auction. You will not want to miss it.


Advancing Inclusion and Anti-Racism in the College Classroom: A rubric and resource guide for instructors

A toolkit aimed to support instructors in developing anti-racist approaches to course design and teaching practices in the undergraduate and graduate setting was released earlier this month by the University of California Berkley. The 39-page resource guide offers an accessible and user-friendly entry-point for instructors interested in considering how their instructional choices impact student outcomes. The guide gives instructors a range of ideas and options to help them modify their courses. The resource is meant for self-assessment and is designed to facilitate progressive refinement toward anti-racist teaching over time. Dr. Kamini Singha, Associate Dean Earth and Society Programs, got some helpful concrete ideas that she found straightforward for Mines faculty to implement.

Broadening participation in geoscience field-studies through inclusively designed communities of learning

Join the Department of Geology and Geological Engineering for their Van Tuyl Lecture Series on February 16, 4:00-5:00 PM to learn from National Science Foundation (NSF) Program Officer Dr. Christopher Atchison. Dr. Atchison will speak on the topic, Broadening participation in geoscience field-studies through inclusively designed communities of learning. Dr. Atchison is a Professor of Geoscience Education in the School of Education and Department of Geology at the University of Cincinnati, current Program Officer in the Division of Equity for Excellence in STEM in the Directorate for STEM Education at the NSF and Founder of the International Association for Geoscience Diversity. Chris advocates for a more accessible and inclusive shift in traditional teaching pedagogy methods where students and geoscientists with disabilities are provided opportunities to experience, participate and actively engage in accessible pathways to the geoscience workforce. His research is based on the intentional development of inclusive communities of learning in classroom, laboratory and field studies and the implementation of universally designed instructional strategies.

This presentation will be a great way to learn more about creating inclusive spaces in your field sessions-inside and outside the geosciences- with students and how to do so through a collaborative approach. The presentation and discussion will be held in Berthoud room 231 or on Zoom.


#idigmines Giving Day ignites possibilities during its 24-hour campaign on February 2

 Our students are one of our most esteemed treasures on campus. They’re why many of us continue to invest so much of our time and resources in their success. Every year, campus encourages us to give a little bit of our treasure as a sign of support. Let’s show up BIG this year! Mark your calendar for the return of #idigmines Giving Day on February 2 where you can donate to 35 causes and participate in activities happening during the day to earn bonus money for your favorite cause: trivia, golden blaster scavenger hunt on campus and much more. Ready to donate now? You can make an early gift leading up to the launch of the 24-hour fundraising campaign. If you’re looking to support DI&A-specific funds, consider Women at Mines, Student Emergency Fund, Humanitarian Engineering or Mines DI&A. Thank you for being an OreGiver!

Spread a little joy for Valentine’s Day

There are two additional ways to share your heart this February!

Join Oredigger Disability Activism and Community (ODAC) in spreading a little joy this Valentine’s Day! Members of the student organization will be in the Student Center atrium on February 10, 10:00 AM-12:00 PM with everything needed to make a valentine for someone who could use a pick-me-up.

ODAC was started in 2021 to promote activism and community within the disabled population at Mines. Mines has historically had a small disabled population but has grown steadily in recent years. The club strives to bring this population to the forefront, help make campus more accessible and provide better support for those who need it. Members of the club aim to create a community in which disabled Orediggers and allies can interact and create meaningful relationships to carry them through their life at Mines and beyond.

Spread the love with Multicultural Engineering Program (MEP)

This event focuses on platonic love and self-love through activities, crafts and discussions. Stop by for some snacks and hang out with friends. Monday, February 13, 5:30 – 7:00 PM @ The MEP


Contribute to February’s Mines DI&A Digest

Help us highlight the work you or your department is doing across campus to support DI&A at Mines by submitting a brief article to February’s Mines DI&A Digest. Submissions must be received by the second week of February in order to make it into the Digest.  

Save the Dates 

Hyperlinks = virtual meeting access information. All times are Mountain Daylight Time.  

As always, we welcome your ideas, thoughts and feedback at diversity@mines.edu.
Thank you for being a member of an inclusive Oredigger community and an advocate and ally for positive social change.

Diversity, Inclusion and Access