FIU has joined the University of Central Florida and the University of South Florida in launching a “Year of Reflection,” a collaboration devoted to social justice, diversity, equity, and inclusion programming as well as research for faculty, staff, and students.
The three universities form the Florida Consortium of Metropolitan Research Universities. Since 2014, the collaborative partnership has pooled the universities’ experts and resources with a focus on student success.
The Year of Reflection initiative came from a discussion that involved FIU President Mark B. Rosenberg and FIU Provost and Executive Vice President Kenneth G. Furton, President Alexander Cartwright and Interim Provost Michael D. Johnson of UCF, President Steven C. Currall and Provost Ralph C. Wilcox of USF, Helios Education Foundation President and CEO Paul J. Luna, and Michael Preston, executive director of the Florida Consortium. The participants discussed how the three institutions could take the global, national and local experiences that have impacted the campus communities in the past year, which included racial injustice incidents such as the killing of George Floyd at the hands of police, to foster tangible change.
This week, the Florida Consortium officially launched the Year of Reflection by sharing a video of the panel discussion featuring the presidents of the three universities and moderated by Luna, addressing these issues.
The Year of Reflection will run through the 2021 academic year. Efforts related to the initiative will be aimed at student and employee engagement, diversity, equity and inclusion practices, and institutional change and transformation.
These efforts are complementary to the mission of FIU’s newly formed Division of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion. El pagnier Hudson, vice provost for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at FIU and senior vice president for Human Resources, and Heather Russell, professor of literature and senior associate dean of the School of Environment, Arts and Society in the College of Arts, Sciences & Education, are on the Year of Reflection steering committee.
“The Year of Reflection is aimed at encouraging dialogue and meaningful action around social justice, diversity, equity and inclusion,” Hudson said. “This is in line with our mission in our DEI division to foster an environment on campus where everyone feels they belong.”
Please visit dei.fiu.edu for more information on the Year of Reflection.