Ohio University Graduate Student Senate met Tuesday evening to discuss the annual Campus Climate Survey as well as other items.
Letitia Price, Women’s Affairs commissioner, said the survey will provide information pertaining to the key issues of diversity, equity and inclusion, and how they impact students who are both online and in-person.
“I think it provides us an opportunity to look at perhaps where some of our constituents need us to help them bolster support and provide and serve them,” she said.
The survey is designed to measure the extent to which diversity and inclusion play an integral role on OU’s Athens campus. Price also said the group who is organizing the survey has agreed to share all of the data pertaining specifically to graduate students.
“(This will help us) get a better insight to the key things that are affecting our graduate students, and therefore we can maybe start devising some solutions,” she said.
To increase participation for the survey, the body passed a resolution to fund a gift-card incentive. It will provide $200 in the form of 20 $10 gift cards, and winners will be randomly drawn from the whole participation pool of graduate and professional students.
The body also received updates about student well-being beyond the survey. Cindy Cogswell, director of strategic planning and assessment, said the Division of Student Affairs will be refreshing its strategic plan.
Cogswell said the new plan will focus on three areas: assessment of student learning, retention graduation for undergraduate students and the maturity of equity and social justice in staff work environments. The plan is meant to better serve all students, she said.
Also to discuss student well-being, the body met with Joseph Shields, vice president for research and creative activity, who talked about services the Graduate College offers.
“The Graduate College offers a variety of workshops and other activities for professional development ... There's still a couple of activities, several sessions remaining this semester, a couple sessions on challenging bias and microaggressions in the classroom … and also creating and assembling your teaching portfolio,” he said. “There’s also a session for people wanting some assistance or talking about how to conceptualize getting through your dissertation or thesis, which, of course, is a big deal.”