Diversity Education

Each year, the composition of faculty, staff, and students at RIT changes. This leads to a more complex, richer, and dynamic educational environment in which learning and meaningful interaction can occur.

In order to leverage the local, national and global diversity of our campus, it is important we provide the knowledge and skills to ensure our students, staff, and faculty work toward cultural humility.

Cultural humility is a life-long self-examination and accountability process that helps people think critically about their own assumptions, beliefs, biases, and values in order to address historic and current inequalities. While uncomfortable learning moments will arise, this process is designed to create humble and emotionally intelligent people rather than “perfect” experts.
Working Toward Cultural Humility

The Department of Diversity Education leads and partners with others on campus to offer a variety of active and passive educational programs annually. Building off of the Diversity Education Module that is available to new incoming students and all employees, our goals are to: 

  • Facilitate educational experiences which contribute to a more welcoming, inclusive and open-minded campus environment.
  • Create meaningful skill-building opportunities that can be applied to the classroom, residential, or workplace setting. 
  • Organize small, medium and large-scale events and programs that offer tangible ways to find belonging.
  • Assist students, staff and faculty in finding opportunities to interact across their commonalities and differences. 
  • Assess and respond to attitudinal, structural, and cultural transformation that contributes to the common good and RIT’s values. 

Interested in understanding our impact? Then view the presentation below. 

Diversity Education Year 4 data and presentation


of employees have engaged in at least one diversity education program (Year 3)​


employees have enrolled in the 6-part Cultural Humility Certificate Program (Year 3)


have completed the certificate program to date (Year 4)


skills learned including self-reflection, active listening, empathy, using micro-affirmations and problem solving from different viewpoints


students participated in at least one training


Breaking Bread

Building relationships across difference require intentionality. This program offers two tiers or ways for you to accomplish that by learning how to build solidarity with others and how to actually dialogue rather than debate.

Circles: In a 15 person group, join a group of faculty, staff and students for the intentional practice of dialoguing across difference of identity, experience and opinion over a 5-week period. Each cohort's topic will be informed by a kind of media to guide conversation. Program operates from February 13 through March 24. Open to students, staff and faculty. Applications due by February 3.

Spring 2023 cohort topics include: 

  • Is Having a Seat at the Table Enough? This circle will explore whether be invited to participate is enough to feel like you are included and making a difference. In addition, participants will engage in conversation about whether having some representation is better than no representation in movies, video games or careers. Facilitated by Stella Lee, Assistant Director of Diversity Education. Open to students, faculty and staff. Time and location are to be determined.
  • Is Cancel Culture Accountability? This circle will explore the meaning of accountability and cancel culture. In addition, participants will get a chance to question the value and impact of both. Open to students, staff and faculty. Facilitated by Dr. Taj Smith, Director of Diversity Education, on Mondays 3pm-4pm via Zoom.

Sign up

Cultural Humility Certificate

Each participant must complete six workshops. Four are considered core requirements. The remaining two workshops are electives that each participant can choose from this list of Spring 2024 offerings. Once completed, participants will receive a downloadable certificate and a sticker to indicate you can serve as a diversity champion on campus. This opportunity is only available for faculty, staff, and graduate students. Employees sign up via Talent Roadmap and type in “cultural humility” into the search engine and click on “instructor-led.” 
Faculty/staff sign-up through Talent Roadmap 
search for “cultural humility” and select “instructor-led” under Delivery Type
Participants Are Saying

Diversity Theater

RIT Diversity Theater uses theater based methods, initiatives and hands on experiences to explore what it means to successfully cultivate a community rich in diversity and inclusion.
Programming reaches across the RIT campus and is open to students, faculty, and staff.
Learn more

Into the Roc: The People’s Track

A limited number of students, staff, and faculty are welcomed to sign up for free regional trips to learn about different groups’ history, present, and to converse about their future.
Student sign-up

Online Learning Community: Inclusive Pedagogy 

Each semester, a 7-week learning community is offered online via MyCourses. This learning community focuses on how to incorporate inclusive teaching activities and habits into the classroom experience to better serve today’s college student’s culturally-informed learning. Tenured, non-tenured, adjunct faculty, teaching staff and graduate students are welcomed to participate. 

Register here

Inclusive Hiring Practices Training

In partnership with the Provost, the Office of Faculty Affairs and the Office of Faculty Diversity & Recruitment, this in-person experience is offered separately for faculty and staff as each group and individual search committee members look to ensure inclusive hiring practices are incorporated into future hiring processes.
Register here