DIBE Commitment

Diversity, inclusion, belonging and equity all need to be part of the Southwestern Biology Depart... Diversity, inclusion, belonging and equity all need to be part of the Southwestern Biology Department

Diversity, Inclusivity, Belonging, and Equity (DIBE) in the Biology Department:

Language developed  through student, staff and faculty collaboration

(Dept. Approved: 2/7/22)

See update below




The Biology Department at Southwestern University believes that learning takes place best in an inclusive environment where students, staff, and faculty from diverse backgrounds are seen and heard. 


We acknowledge that history is rich with injustices committed by members of the STEM community, including biologists, and these offenses continue to negatively impact recruitment and retention of underrepresented groups.


Members of the biology department understand that change cannot happen without having difficult conversations. We believe that we need to carefully examine uncomfortable truths from the past and present so that we may learn from these events and begin to forge a new path where students of any color, religion, identity, or ability can succeed in biology. 


We strive to provide a safe and supportive environment for underrepresented individuals, including, but not limited to, students of color, sexual and gender minorities, low-income students, first-generation students, differently abled students, and those with chronic health conditions.


UPDATE (3/23/23) —- In response to events on campus, the Biology faculty and staff have also adopted the following statement:

The faculty and staff of the Southwestern Biology Department are incensed by recent hateful racist acts on campus. The Black Student Union and the Coalition for Diversity and Social Justice have presented President Trombley with a list of demands in response both to these recent incidents and to long-standing concerns. The Biology Department fully supports these calls for strong, consistent and on-going action by the University to bring to account those responsible for the recent actions, to work proactively to prevent future outrages, and to devote substantial effort and resources to improving the campus climate for all. The Biology Department reaffirms our commitment to be an active agent in building a more diverse, inclusive, and equitable community.

We are working towards a more inclusive and equitable environment. What we are already doing:

  • Trainings
    • Lavender Spaces training for all faculty
    • Discussions with students on how to make the biology dept. more inclusive through promoting a better sense of belonging.
  • Physical spaces
    • Gender neutral bathrooms in the science building
    • Private breast-feeding room for mothers
    • Wheelchair accessible laboratory