The Journey Co-Leaders are responsible for charting a path forward with the Chancellor for how UNL increases its understanding and knowledge of how racism manifests in society and higher education and impedes UNL’s ability to promote access, equity, and inclusion. They interact and connect across the institution and with institutional leadership, councils, committees, centers, offices, colleges, and departments to utilize local and institutional expertise and available resources while assessing institutional practices, policies and recommendation strategies for eliminating institutional barriers.
Since July 2020, the Co-Leaders have held over 30 meetings with members of UNL, had weekly meetings to address major issues, have met regularly with the Chancellor and have continued to advise on the outward facing actions of UNL around race. The Journey Co-Leaders have used this time to develop a Journey Co-Leaders Plan that lays out how it will function and how it will advance the work of anti-racism on campus to be shared publicly in the coming months. The work of the Journey Co-Leaders continues with monthly meetings with the Chancellor, an on-going review of institutional demands paired with responses.
Below are some highlights of the Co-Leaders work since the naming of the Co-Leaders:
- July 2020
- Formation of the co-leaders and initial conversation with the Office of the Chancellor on structure and expectations.
- September 2020
- Communication regarding the Scholars Strike making units aware of the call-to-action directed at American academics and exploring the University’s stance on national initiatives centered on race.
- Initial conversation to develop the scope and potential opportunities for the Omaha World-Herald partnership.
- October 2020
- Opportunities to discuss the system's review of the Racial Bias Process Review and auditing of institutional responses to racial discrimination; opportunities to enhance University communications on race-related matters.
- Engaged ORED to explore opportunities to engage faculty of color, discover who is doing research on topics related to race, and explore opportunities for funding to study topics of race and social justice.
- Faculty recruitment and retention
- Partnerships and economic development
- ORED’s internal anti-racism efforts
- Initial conversation with Black Student Union Leadership to discuss student involvement and identify ways for student engagement throughout the Journey.
- November 2020
- Discussion with the Diversity Commission Co-Chairs to learn about the work of the Commission and how their work will connect to the Journey.
- Discussion to broaden the scope of the Grand Challenges to include focus on race and offers to include the Co-Leader perspective.
Between December 2020 and April 2021, the Co-Leaders have had meetings with the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Executive Leadership Team and other campus leaders, to discuss their disposition to the Journey Towards Anti-racism, and to explore some of the challenges they are facing in this regard. These meetings have offered insight into the leadership’s efforts in this regard and has involved candid discussions about the concerns that surround issues of racism and efforts towards antiracism in various areas of the university.
- January 2021
- March 2021
- August 2021