3

I am crafting applications for US faculty positions and Californian universities require diversity statements. Now, the problem is I have no idea what to write in it, since diversity can mean literally anything. I've seen various examples that are all based on personal struggles by people belonging to minority groups or active in some program related to mentoring/teaching to minorities, which makes writing such a statement much easier.

Now, I've never been involved in any "program" of this type. There's no research/teaching about minorities in my field (science). I'm no minority, since I'm a white european. I've lived here and there for various years (outside of my homeland) in my early life and to work these last 5-6 years, so I'm technically an emigrant, but I guess it'd be offensive to people emigrating due to serious reasons to pick on this to develop the statement.

I was wondering whether anybody can give me a solid to develop something tasteful. I thought about something about multidisciplinarity since I've worked and studied in various fields, but I think the purpose of such statement is to address racial/gender/sex diversity.

  • 1
    most of the links in those questions are dead, and thus useless. – Anon Sep 1 '18 at 17:10
  • 3
    A reasonable statement might be about how you consider the diversity of your students on your teaching – Dawn Sep 1 '18 at 17:13
  • Google will tell you a lot. See, for example insidehighered.com/advice/2016/06/10/… – Buffy Sep 1 '18 at 17:19
  • 2
    If English is not your native language, perhaps you could discuss your challenges and lessons learned regarding being a non-native speaker of English. – Dave L Renfro Sep 1 '18 at 17:36
  • 3
    I'm pretty baffled by the sentence "There's no research/teaching about minorities in my field (science)." There's lots of programs at every university related to teaching STEM subjects to underrepresented groups, lots of student groups, and plenty of research being done about what works and what doesn't in broadening participation. – Noah Snyder Sep 1 '18 at 19:10
4

This comes off a bit to me like "this application asks for a teaching statement but I haven't ever taught or thought seriously about teaching, so what do I write?" Well, if you haven't done anything or thought seriously about it, then you're not going to be able to write a very good statement. The first steps (which it's probably a little late for) are to start thinking about issues around underrepresented groups and getting involved in some way. Barring that you just have to resign yourself to this being a very weak part of your application.

That said, there are some other aspects beyond racial/gender diversity which you might think about and might have something to say about. For example, maybe you have relevant experience concerning teaching ESL (English second language) students, or first-generation college students, or students coming from underrepresented rural areas.

1

One of those Californian colleges prepared a useful page discussing How to Prepare a Diversity Statement: https://www.pomona.edu/administration/academic-dean/faculty-jobs/how-prepare-diversity-statement

FWIW, Diversity statements are becoming pretty common beyond California. My Midwestern regional comprehensive requests them now.

0

You say what you want is to write a diversity statement. What you actually need is the training and experience to support a statement. Some examples for how you can get training:

Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching, and Learning

Journal Articles

You also need to do some teaching at a diverse institution.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.