Training to Foster Diversity in Faculty Hiring

Message to USC Faculty

From: Michael W. Quick, Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs; Elizabeth Graddy, Vice Provost for Academic and Faculty Affairs

July 20, 2018

Our strategic plan Answering the Call provides that one of our key priorities as a university is to cultivate a community of diverse viewpoints as we prepare students to face the challenges of a rapidly changing world. It is critical that our faculty population accurately represents the diverse cultural makeup of our Southern California location and includes a range of perspectives that positions us to fulfill our role as a thought leader of global impact on the Pacific Rim.

Creating a diverse faculty community begins with our faculty searches, which must include and appropriately consider candidates of diverse backgrounds. Traditional hiring searches can generally suffer by overlooking qualified diverse candidates with non-inclusive recruiting, and are marked by implicit bias throughout the hiring process. It is essential that we appreciate the impact of implicit bias during faculty searches and take an active approach to seeking out the most exceptional teachers and scholars without wrongly disadvantaging candidates based on flawed criteria and methods.

To equip faculty with best practices on ensuring that a diverse pool of candidates is recruited and assessed fairly throughout the hiring process, we are pleased to announce a day-long Fostering Diversity in Faculty Hiring training event on Wednesday, September 12, 2018 from 9:00am–3:00pm in Town and Gown. Professor Shaun Harper, director of the USC Race and Equity Center and nationally renowned expert on diversity and inclusion in academia, will lead the training. As this is integral to our hiring practices going forward, this event will be mandatory for all faculty search committee chairs and deans of faculty. In addition, we highly recommend that any other faculty serving on search committees or who are interested please take advantage of this training opportunity.

We believe this event will be an invaluable experience. Thank you for playing an active role in our continuous commitment to diversity at USC.


Cc: C. L. Max Nikias
Academic Senate
Academic Deans
President’s Cabinet
Provost’s Cabinet