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Diversity Statement

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Short Version of CCI Diversity Statement
Approved by CCI Faculty, September 17, 2010

CCI recognizes and values diversity. Exposing students to diverse people, ideas and cultures increases opportunities for intellectual inquiry, encourages critical thinking, and enhances communication and information competence. When all viewpoints are heard, thoughtfully considered, and respectfully responded to, everyone benefits. Diversity and fairness unite us with the wider professional and global community.

Diversity GroupLong Version of CCI Diversity Statement

The College of Communication and Information recognizes that a college diverse in its people, curricula, scholarship, research, and creative activities expands opportunities for intellectual inquiry and engagement, helps students develop critical thinking skills, and prepares students for social and civic responsibilities. All members of the college benefit from diversity and the quality of learning, research, scholarship and creative activities is enhanced by a climate of inclusion, understanding and appreciation of differences and the full range of human experience. As a result, the college is committed to diversity and equal opportunity and it recognizes that it must represent the diversity inherent in American society. The college is acutely aware that diversity and fairness are foundations that unite the college's faculty, staff, students, and the larger communication and information community.

Our commitment to promoting, protecting, and ensuring the diversity in our community is not an end unto itself. Rather, it builds upon an understanding that a diverse society is essential for the free exchange of ideas, debate, research, academic freedom, growth, responsibility, knowledge, integrity, cooperation and success in the local and global context. Diversity is also essential in developing the cultural competencies and effectiveness communication and information professionals need to manage the communication and information creation-organization-dissemination processes that serve the needs of increasingly diverse communities.

Diversity enriches the learning and teaching experiences of students, faculty, and others to live and work in an interconnected local, regional, and global village where there are many differences in people based on races, ethnicities, religions/spiritualities, creeds, national origins, languages, genders, sexual orientations, disabilities, ages, veteran status, marital/partnered status, physical appearances, political affiliations, and social, economic, or educational backgrounds, among other variables; all are honored, welcome, and respected in the College of Communication and Information. At the same time, there are many similarities in us that create potentials for rich and creative partnerships across the differences and may facilitate communication, understanding, and mutual growth. Without a reflective and thoughtful understanding of the similarities and differences among us, as well as ways to promote mutual respect and collaboration, education cannot be truly successful.

Thus, we, the faculty and staff of the College of Communication and Information, affirm our commitment to further diversity and equal opportunity in our teaching, research, services, and other creative pursuits. The College of Communication and Information willingly complies with applicable laws adopted by the University of Tennessee regarding non-discrimination and affirmative action. For details of the University's Equal Employment Opportunity/Non-Discrimination/Affirmative Action Statement, please visit the Office of Equity and Diversity website