The Diversity Council —a committee appointed by the chief diversity officer—is committed to promoting civility and respect within the Purdue Fort Wayne community.
The Diversity Council organizes, researches, and develops events and initiatives related to diversity in accordance with the university’s strategic plan focus on promoting a campus community where all are welcome and treated respectfully.
Diversity affects every facet of the university, from recruitment to graduation, curriculum to campus climate, and our partnerships with the community.
The Diversity Council is thus integral to Purdue Fort Wayne’s future and the council’s benefits for students, faculty, and staff are immeasurable.
The Diversity Council was created in 1994. At the time, the Council’s charge was to organize activities and initiatives in support of the formerly Indiana Purdue Fort Wayne (IPFW) diversity mission, which stated that IPFW “seeks to demonstrate through curriculum, support systems, and policies that it values individual differences, strives to create and maintain a campus environment that welcomes diverse characteristics, backgrounds, and experiences, and to identify such diversity as a vital source of the intellectual, social, and personal growth essential to a university education” (1994). These goals were later formalized and incorporated into the IPFW Strategic Plan.
The Diversity Council’s charge was redefined in 2003 as follows:
To monitor and report on progress toward all the diversity-related goals of the IPFW Strategic Plan, and to make recommendations for improvement. To this end, the Council, with staff support through the chair and the new Assessment Director, will:
develop, in collaboration with the responsible unit(s), a plan for coordinating and reporting on diversity-related activities that are intended to meet Strategic Plan goals
develop, in collaboration with the responsible units, a plan for monitoring and reporting on the progress of the various diversity-related initiatives that are part of the process of institutional transformation
publish an Annual Report on diversity activities/initiatives and their impact
make recommendations for how to increase impact (e.g., training, development, best practices, resource allocation)
develop and administer an annual budget for funding new initiatives and projects
develop criteria and priorities for funding
The first Annual Accomplishments Report, for the 2004 calendar year, was published in 2005.
In 2020, PFW hired its first chief diversity officer (CDO). The CDO assessed the current diversity council and DEI Task Force and found it best to convene one advisory board/council.
In 2021, a new diversity council structure, goals, and objectives were created and the following members were appointed:
Diversity Council Members 2022:
Janet Badia, Dean and Professor, College of Liberal Arts
Shannon Bischoff, Professor, English and Associate Director, University Research and Innovation
Sunila Chowdhry, Director, TRIO Upward Bound
Kenneth Christmon, Associate Vice Chancellor Ombudsman, Human Resources
Ranada Clark, Administrative Assistant, College of Professional Studies
Farah Combs, Director, Honors Program
Adolfo Coronado, Interim Assistant Dean, College of Engineering, Technology, and Computer Science
Jeannie DiClementi, Associate Professor, Psychology
Jamie Fleming, Director, Study Abroad and Coordinator of NSE
Melissa Gruys, Dean and Professor, Doermer School of Business
MarTeze Hammonds, Chief Diversity Officer
Melissa Helmsing, Associate Director of Human Resources/Deputy Title IX Coordinator
Shubitha Kever, Associate Diversity Officer/Director of TRIO Programs
Ashley Malone, Assistant Director for Administration and Championships, Athletics
Christine Marcuccilli, Associate Director of Compliance/Title IX Coordinator
Ahmed Mustafa, Professor, Biology
Giang Petroviak, Director, New Student Programs, Admissions
Pooja Singh, Classification and Compensation Specialist, Human Resources
Vic Spencer, Director, Q Center
Cynthia Springer, Associate Vice Chancellor for Human Resources and Office of Institutional Equity