Kellogg Inclusion Coalition (KIC) Update October 2021

(October 22, 2021)

Dear Kellogg community & Kellogg Inclusion Coalition (KIC),

Greetings from Evanston! I hope this message finds you safe and well. The purpose of this missive is to provide a brief update regarding some of the significant things transpiring within our community.

It is important to note, we entered into academic year 2021-2022 with a steadfast community commitment to fostering an environment reflective of exemplary diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI). As key enablers of “delivering on the promise,” the coalition must keep our three strategic objectives (i.e., increased representation, increased academic exposure to DEI research and frameworks, and the ensurance of an equitable and inclusive community experience at Northwestern Kellogg) at the forefront of our daily efforts.

This is a prodigious task, if left to the few. That is why Northwestern Kellogg is calling on the many, all of you, to enhance this undertaking. Dean Cornelli and I are incredibly proud of what the school accomplished last year in the midst of some very trying times. And this year, we’re off to a strong start. For example, this fall roughly 600 Full-Time students signed up for Engage Dinners, which are student-led dinners that encourage participants to listen to others’ lived experiences and engage in meaningful conversations on topics like systemic oppression and unconscious biases. This increase from the historical average of about 300 sign-ups is inspiring and exemplary of the kind of community we want to foster – one that is curious, one that is inclusive, and one that is engaged.

Speaking of engagement, the following paragraphs detail just some of the wonderful work recently performed by our colleagues. Furthermore, they will highlight some ways you can become more involved in the coalition’s journey.

Kellogg Inclusion Coalition (KIC)

For our newest community members, the Kellogg Inclusion Coalition (KIC) was launched in the summer of 2020with the intent of working in a coordinated manner to create greater diversity, equity and inclusion in the Kellogg community experience. This 800+ member group is co-chaired by Dean Cornelli and I, and comprised of representatives from across our community (including faculty, staff, students and alumni).

I invite anyone who possesses an interest in joining the coalition to share your information in this brief survey.

I look forward to working together to advance meaningful change.   

DEI Annual Report: The Kellogg Community Experience 2020-2021

Kellogg recently issued its first DEI Annual Report, which outlines some of our efforts made in the last year to advance our strategic objectives. I encourage you all to take a look and think critically about how we can continue to advance our work, with potential inclusion in next year’s report.

Kellogg Alumni for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (KADEI)

Formed in the summer of 2021, KADEI’s purpose is to become a resource, facilitator and influencer for Kellogg and its alumni to accelerate equity and inclusion and eradicate systemic racism in the companies that we lead and the communities to which we belong.

If you are a Kellogg student or alum interested in joining KADEI, you can join through their group on LinkedIn.

Advancing DEI Award Recipients

In the winter of 2020, Kellogg created the monthly Advancing DEI Award to celebrate staff members who are committed to actively advancing DEI within the Kellogg community. Please join me in congratulating the most recent recipients of this award, Joseph Patton ’09 (for his longtime partnership with the BMA and being a key driver of the pre-matriculation diversity student experience related to early recruiting) and Jarvis Broom (for his leadership in KBAN and commitment to fostering an environment of inclusion).

Upcoming Community Initiatives

Internal DEI Climate Survey

We will be issuing our second, annual climate survey November 15-28, 2021. Similar to our approach in the fall of 2020, this survey will go out to all staff, faculty and students who are benefits eligible, and the data we collect will be confidential and influential in targeting initiatives going forward. Our ability to pursue an effective data-driven DEI approach is contingent upon having access to the best possible information. So, I encourage you to participate!

Inclusion Workshops for Faculty

I’m excited to share that several inclusion workshops (led by our faculty and other Northwestern University experts) have transpired throughout October. For example, Professor Nicole Stephens (MORS) taught multiple sessions of a workshop titled, “Creating Equity and Inclusion in Your Classroom.” The seminar covered research-based principles that can help faculty level the playing field to create more equitable opportunities for student engagement, as well as a more inclusive culture in which students’ differences are respected and valued. We will be teaching additional topics to our faculty throughout this academic year in service of strengthening their competence in understanding best practices for enhancing academic inclusion.

Full-Time Kellogg Student Association Programming

Engage Dinners, a beloved tradition of Kellogg, are up and running for Full-Time students this year! I’m excited to share that roughly 600 Kellogg students signed up – up from an historical average of roughly 300. For those new to Kellogg, these are small-group dinner discussions that meets two times per quarter in the same dinner group, engaging in meaningful discussions based on a curated curriculum and facilitated by trained, student leaders. Past dinner topics include systemic oppression, intersectionality, and unconscious biases. 

Evening & Weekend Kellogg Student Association Initiative

This year, the E&W KSA is piloting several new awards for clubs, including the “Most Inclusive Award.” Currently, this award takes into consideration the diversity of student registration, such as program diversity and how far along students are in their program. The first recipient of the “Most Inclusive Award” was given to the Evening & Weekend Consulting Club.

If you are interested in learning more about or becoming involved in these initiatives, please reach out to simona.kovatcheva@kellogg.northwestern.edunedra.lucas@kellogg.northwestern.edu, or sheng.li@kellogg.northwestern.edu.

Kellogg Staff Resource Group Programming

Kellogg Resource Groups continue to shape and sponsor outstanding programming. Recently, Kellogg Honoring Asian Identities (KHAI) cohosted “Discussion on Anti-Asian Racism” with Northwestern’s APIDA Staff Affinity Group (ASAG). This discussion engaged participants in gaining a better understanding of unconscious biases against Asians and how to truly engage in allyship behaviors for all marginalized groups.

I invite you to learn more about Kellogg Staff Resource Groups and how to get involved here.

My next KIC update will be at the start of the Winter Quarter, but I am also in the process of planning to bring the community together for a live update later this fall and identifying other opportunities for live dialogue with community members.As always, thank you for your commitment to behaving inclusively and fostering inclusion for all.

Sincerely,

Bernie