OU Launches Mandatory Diversity Training for All

Mike Seals - August 30, 2020 11:18 pm

NORMAN, OKLA. – The University of Oklahoma is introducing a required diversity training program for all students, faculty and staff on all three OU campuses. The online training, which will launch next week, aims to engage participants in a meaningful learning experience with the ultimate goal of fostering a more inclusive campus community.

The training course’s educational materials take participants through five learning modules that address topics such as identities, power, privilege and creating a culture of respect. The self-paced course allows individuals to progress through the training on their own schedule. All students, faculty and staff at OU will be required to take the course at least once every three years, with other education and workshop options available annually.

“Our university has a dynamic, promising future, but we simply cannot reach our full potential unless we become a true place of belonging where every member of the OU family feels seen, heard and valued,” said OU President Joseph Harroz Jr. “Involving all students, faculty and staff in this new diversity training program reinforces our belief that we all share the responsibility of advancing fundamental change.”

OU is using a training program from Everfi that presents a common framework for all participants, but with content tailored to the student and employee populations. The training includes interactive, scenario-based videos where participants’ choices impact the outcome of a narrative. It also includes a portion that fosters active listening and conversation skills.

The training is part of a broader campaign to support OU’s core purpose as a public flagship university. One of the five pillars of OU’s Strategic Plan for its future calls upon the OU community to become a place of belonging and emotional growth for all. Harroz noted that the training program is one element of OU’s efforts to promote systemic change.

“At OU, who we are and what we stand for matters,” Harroz said. “This universal training requirement for every member of our community underscores the important role each of us plays in building a culture of inclusivity on our campuses and beyond.”

For more information about diversity, equity and inclusion online training, visit link.ou.edu/everfi.


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