Equity + Inclusion Initiatives, Programs and Resources
Welcome to LCAD’s Equity + Inclusion page. Here, you can find a list of the current programs and initiatives that our school is putting in place to further develop a culture of equity and inclusion so that every member of the LCAD community can learn, work, live and play in a safe, supportive environment. Click on each initiative below to learn more.
As part of our ongoing efforts to ensure a campus-wide commitment to a safe, equitable and inclusive environment for all, we have established an Equity + Inclusion Council (EIC). The council is collaborating with staff, faculty, students, trustees and alumni to continue the development and implementation of initiatives, programs, and curriculum to better support diversity in all its forms. The Council is also reviewing materials to recommend appropriate educational and training resources for everyone we serve. To learn more about the Council and its members, click HERE.
NEXT STEPS: The EIC is currently recruiting alumni and students to join staff and faculty members on the Council.
LCAD is actively working with Michelle Meyers, a professional Restorative Justice consultant, who is collaborating with our Chief Operations Officer, faculty and the Equity + Inclusion Council to collect, understand, and address input and concerns. For more info on Michelle, click HERE
NEXT STEPS: Ms. Meyers is in the process of planning staff, alumni and faculty forums. The dates and times of these forums will be announced as soon as they are scheduled. Phase I of the process will continue to include virtual forums with students, alumni, staff and faculty. In Phase II, based on the learning and feedback from Phase I, Ms. Meyers will help to identify and plan next steps.
UPDATE: On June 26th, Ms. Myers held a student forum; on August 27th, she met with alumni. Although there were some differences between the concerns of the two groups, she found that students and alumni expressed a need for greater transparency and honest communication with administration and faculty. The groups also strongly advocated for greater diversity among faculty, staff and trustees. They felt that more professional training should be developed around the issues of equity and racism at the school. They also believe that the school must cultivate a greater sense of community and culture of care by recognizing the harm done in the past and by showing care for BIPOC and students with disabilities. Students also wanted to see an increase in the number of clubs and school organizations. Since the fall, Black students have created a Black Students Union, and an International Students Club has been started.
NEXT STEPS FOR THE RESTORATIVE JUSTICE PROJECT: Ms. Myers is planning a second student forum in March 2021. The Equity Inclusion Council members and Ms. Myers believe that student voices are crucial to the entire process and would like to hold a regularly a scheduled annual student forum. Ms. Myers will also lead a faculty/staff forum in January before the start of the spring semester.
These two forums will allow us to assess steps taken since summer and to discuss other ways to improve the campus climate.
LCAD is working with an Equity Leadership Coach to assist the Chief Operating Officer in creating and implementing structural changes related to equity and inclusion on campus.
NEXT STEPS: The Leadership Coach will work with the Chief Operating Officer to analyze hiring and HR practices as they relate to equity and inclusion.
In June 2020, LCAD held an information-gathering forum with approximately 130 faculty and staff members. We listened to comments that helped guide us toward the next steps outlined on this page. Subsequently, our Restorative Justice Consultant also organized and held a student forum that elicited valuable information from concerned students.
NEXT STEPS: The Equity + Inclusion Council, along with our Restorative Justice Consultant and Alumni Affairs Manager, will be holding an alumni discussion forum on Thursday, August 27th, at 6:30pm. Alumni will be contacted with additional information and participation instructions.
UPDATE: An Alumni Forum was hosted by the EIC and Ms. Myers. Alumni expressed their hopes and concerns, which are being addressed through the strategies of the Restorative Justice Project. Alumni sought ways to assist in the positive changes being made at LCAD.
One of the most important student concerns emerging out of the forums was a greater need for financial and decision-making transparency. To that end, the Board of Trustees invited a student representative to attend board meetings on a regular basis, thus allowing the student to witness the decision-making process within the board. Along the same lines, the staff published and circulated to students a general breakdown of its budget categories and expenditures.
LCAD Equity + Inclusion Scholarship for People of Color
Laguna College of Art + Design promises real change!
On Friday, June 8, 2020, in support of social justice, the LCAD community of Trustees, Administrative Leadership, and Faculty vowed to create the LCAD Equity + Inclusion Scholarship. This scholarship fund has been created to provide vital support to LCAD’s under-represented students who are people of color. Through this Equity + Inclusion Scholarship, LCAD pledges to eradicate disparities in our student representation. The College embraces the power of representation and recognizes the role that art plays in strengthening our community.
Donations designated to the LCAD Equity + Inclusion Scholarship help LCAD support our under-represented students of color regardless of their financial backgrounds. This LCAD Scholarship will be awarded to these under-represented students to ensure increased representation within the LCAD student body. Secondary factors for recipients will be based on need and merit. The intent is for this scholarship to be a student’s gateway to a degree from LCAD and to a career in the creative arts. Scholarship support may take the form of one-time gifts, recurring annual contributions, or endowed funds. Scholarships are distributed in the academic year after they are received.
Empower LCAD’s under-represented students to become the creative professionals of tomorrow!
LCAD is launching a Fine Arts Virtual Exhibition in late August. Entitled “Artists Unite: A Virtual Exhibition and Fundraiser to Honor Black Lives Matter,” the exhibition features donated work created by students, alumni, faculty, staff and trustees. Proceeds from sales of the artwork will go directly to LCAD’s Equity + Inclusion Scholarship, Black Art Futures Fund (BAFF) and Black Trans Femmes in the Arts (BTFA).
NEXT STEPS: The exhibition runs August 31st through October 30th, 2020.
UPDATE: The successful virtual exhibition realized proceeds from sale of the artwork totaling nearly $4,000. The funds are being split between the LCAD Equity + Inclusion Scholarship and the Black Art Futures Fund (BAFF). LCAD’s Equity + Inclusion Scholarship will be awarded to Black students.
The LCAD Board of Trustees serves as the College’s governing board. Trustees are volunteers dedicated to the long-term success and financial health of the College. The LCAD Board of Trustees is actively recruiting members from under-represented populations.
NEXT STEPS: The Equity + Inclusion Council is in the process of recommending educational and training resources for the Board.
UPDATE: In October, the Board of Trustees welcomed Lasana Hotep, founding Executive Director of the Equity Institute who also serves as the Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging (DEIB) at the University of California, Berkeley. He led them through a vibrant, interactive session on the topic of unconscious racial bias and on ways to address lack of equity in higher education.
The Restorative Justice Consultant will lead a comprehensive workshop for faculty in August. This workshop will focus on microaggressions in the classroom as well as restorative practices for healing our community.
NEXT STEPS: Continuing education and training programs will be required of all faculty and department chairs.
UPDATE: Before the start of the semester, Michelle Myers and her associate Jemnia Allen led the faculty through a series of interactive exercises designed to identify and eliminate microaggressions in the classroom and to offer positive ways to recognize and validate the diversity of all student voices. It was well received. We plan to hold similar training sessions each year during faculty orientation for all faculty and staff.
We are revising our Complaint Process to ensure a more transparent and collaborative approach. The types of complaints include, but are not limited to:
- Academic concerns and faculty issues
- Staff concerns
- Discrimination, harassment, retaliation, violence and safety as addressed under state and federal law
- Violations of the LCAD Student Code of Conduct
NEXT STEPS: The expanded complaint process will include mediation services provided by an ombudsman/consultant specializing in conflict resolution. The Board of Trustees will be consulted during the review and establishment of policies that deal with complaints.
UPDATE: The Equity + Inclusion Council has been working with the Provost to create a student complaint process that is clear, easy to follow and addresses the different types of concerns that students might have. Student Government representatives have been consulted, as has the Black Students Union. As of this date, the document has gone through several reviews by the EIC, the faculty, and student groups. Version one is in the final stages of revision and will be updated as needed. This document can be found on the website and will be hyperlinked to a complaint form.
LCAD launched an internal research project to help identify new talent resources outside of the networks used in the past in order to encourage diversification of our faculty and staff. Future positions will be filled using more diverse recruiting channels and avenues.
NEXT STEPS: We will continue to evaluate new resources for faculty and staff searches with support and consultation from the Leadership Coach.
UPDATE: There are currently several searches being conducted to replace vacant staff positions, not the least of which is the presidential search. The Board of Trustees has expressed its commitment to an inclusive search that will welcome applicants from underrepresented groups. A reputable executive search firm dedicated to diversity principles has been retained.
Over the summer, our Liberal Arts Faculty have worked diligently to create more diverse course offerings. This fall we will be offering Living Through History: Culture Wars. We are also revisiting the art history sequence to be inclusive of all cultures.
NEXT STEPS: Additional courses and curriculum changes are being explored for Spring 2021 semester and beyond.
UPDATE: In the spring 2021 semester, LCAD will offer an Asian Art and Culture course. Additionally, a course on “Mesoamerican Empires of the Aztec and Maya” will be on the schedule.
The Liberal Arts Faculty is in the process of revamping its curriculum with the goal of increasing the diversity of offerings in art history and culture. In lieu of the traditional Western Art surveys, focused courses will be offered on a rotating basis. Suggested focused topics include Art & Culture of Africa, Female Artists, Poets and Philosophers of the Renaissance, The Mexican Muralist Movement and Revolutionary Art of the Americas.