Alverno College intentionally creates a welcoming and inclusive learning community in which all members recognize and respect the rights and human dignity of every other member. The College values diversity and seeks talented students, faculty and staff from a variety of backgrounds. In keeping with its long-standing Catholic Franciscan foundations, Alverno College does not discriminate against any student, employee or application to become such on the basis of any individual’s age, color, disability, gender, gender identity or expression, genetic information, marital status, military status, national or ethnic origin, pregnancy or parenting status, political belief or affiliation, race, sex, sexual orientation, or veteran’s status in the administration of its educational programs and activities or in its employment practices. Furthermore, the College prohibits the harassment of students and employees, as harassment is a form of discrimination.
In the area of undergraduate enrollment, Alverno College’s weekday undergraduate programs will remain exclusive in respect to gender identity, but not as to any of the other aforementioned characteristics.
Adopted by Alverno Board of Trustees, December 3, 2017
"Where there is hatred, let me sow love; where there is injury, pardon; where there is doubt, faith; where there is despair, hope; where there is darkness, light; where there is sadness, joy."— from The Peace Prayer of St. Francis
Alverno College is an active learning community founded on Catholic, Franciscan values and shaped by research from across academic disciplines and professional fields in service of our mission: to educate students in a collaborative, inclusive, compassionate and supportive atmosphere.
These Catholic and Franciscan values call on us to cherish the full diversity of human identity, to acknowledge differences in identity as the work of God, and to act together across differences to oppose oppression. Our values challenge us to view the world through a lens of compassion without judgment. Our values compel us to build compassion within ourselves where we fail to find that compassion with ease.
Alverno College strives to nurture, promote and protect the academic, personal and professional development of students, colleagues and guests by embracing individual identities. We pledge continual action toward building a safe environment for all members of our community by creating policies and curricula that fortify our ability to value, strive and succeed within and across diverse populations.
The College recognizes that each of us relies on aspects of our personal identities, histories and experiences for self-definition and strength, and that each of us has a right — an imperative — to explore, express and evaluate those identities and experiences in the context of higher education. Our right to this exploration must come without fear of stereotype and discrimination, and it must not be exercised to the exclusion or harm of others. When conflicts arise, we will work to find resolutions that affirm each member’s humanity and value.
In pursuing our personal and professional goals at Alverno, we learn to negotiate and to inhabit the shared spaces that construct not only the college community, but also the workplace and the broader global community, whether we interact in person or online. We accomplish this objective through continual self-assessment (recognizing and critiquing the foundations of our values, beliefs and knowledge) and social interaction (learning to communicate across differences).
While many organizations have established their vision for diversity practices, Alverno College has determined that our model for community success is rooted in ABIDE, which is Access, Belonging, Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity. Ensuring the implementation of these practices takes place in decision making and strategic programming will allow Alverno to continue to work towards a culture of beloved community.
Providing access means lowering barriers that prevent some people, whether due to ability, gender, religions, race, or any other identity, from fully sharing in spaces, services, or systems. Access includes making disability accommodations, creating bilingual signs and documents, and scheduling around important religious or cultural holidays.
Experiencing a sense of belonging is the emotional outcome of inclusion and means feeling supported, respected, and secure as a member of a community. When people fee that they belong to a community, they are able to act as their full, authentic selves and can meaningfully engage with and shape the community with their own unique voice.
Creating an environment of inclusion means intentionally giving all members of the community regardless of status, background, or identity, the ability to participate in decision-making and community-building processes. When people are included, they feel a sense of belonging and are given the space and security to empower themselves.
Valuing diversity means both acknowledging differences in identity between people as well as actively listening to and incorporating the perspectives of people who experience or embody a wide range of these differences into groups. Diversity is relational, meaning that people can only be diverse in relation to each other and individuals alone cannot be described as diverse.
Practicing equity means offering all members of a community the unique types of support they need to achieve success by intentionally accounting for their complex histories, identities, and perspectives. Equity is contrasted with equality, which flattens the individuality of human experience to give all people the same type of support regardless of their needs.