Although inclusive excellence is a relatively new framework for diversity, equity, and inclusion in higher education, St. Kate’s work in social justice, diversity, and inclusion began at its founding more than 100 years ago. This cornerstone of our legacy of excellence is what we’ve used to build our curriculum, our community, and our relationship with the greater world.
St. Catherine University acknowledges the historic and current oppression of people based on various intersecting identities. Yet we realize it is not enough to simply acknowledge our complicity around issues of racial and other injustices. Our mission calls us to stand in solidarity against injustice, racism, xenophobia, discrimination, and violence of any kind.
Higher education can play an important role in dismantling and eliminating systemic racism and oppression that have plagued our society for more than 500 years, first by calling it out and then by acting. St. Catherine University recognizes our collective desire, as an educational institution and community, to take actions that go beyond individually posting hashtags and Martin Luther King Jr.’s eloquent quotes on our social media channel of choice. That is why we commit to lead with inclusive excellence.
At St. Catherine University, our inclusive excellence framework centers students, faculty, and staff; generates civil discourse and collaboration; and strengthens our institution. Our focus is expansive and encompasses more than solely the topic of race, but we cannot deny that issues of race are at the center of much of our work as a society. This approach embraces inclusive excellence as a strategic priority for making a great university even better. From our daily practices and policies to curriculum and programming to our work with the St. Kate’s campus and throughout the Twin Cities, inclusive excellence is foundational to our equity-minded work.
St. Catherine University, one of the nation’s largest and most diverse women’s universities, has been recognized by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching with a Community Engagement Classification. Our student body is one of the most racially diverse in Minnesota. Our new academic master plan highlights cultural fluency as a prominent goal of a St. Catherine University education. We also continue to support the work of the BIPOC faculty and staff group and White Antiracist Accountability for Learning and Kinship as spaces for faculty and staff and the work of student organizations such as SHE Pab: Voices of Hmong Women, Asian Women’s Association, and Pan-Afrikan Student Alliance to name a few.
As citizens of a diverse world, our university commits to reflect this diversity in our students, faculty, staff, board, administrators, and alumni in participation, policy, leadership, and equity in opportunities. Our understanding of and respect for human differences is integral to a liberal arts education and preparation for a diverse workforce. Our community challenges itself and aspires to be welcoming and respectful, while interacting effectively, sensitively, and with cultural humility in an increasingly diverse, global community. This is our collective work.