Report details efforts for an inclusive business learning environment
The efforts highlighted in Virginia Tech Pamplin College of Business’ inaugural Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging (DEIB) Impact Report represent progress toward the college’s commitment to fostering an inclusive business learning environment.
Published by Pamplin’s Office for DEIB, the 2021-22 impact report highlights the college’s progress in meeting the DEIB goals outlined in Pamplin’s 2019-24 Strategic Plan and Implementation Plan around student enrollment, faculty, programing, engagement, and more.
“Progress is being made, which gives recognition to the belief that change is not only possible but achievable,” said Janice Branch Hall, associate dean for DEIB at Pamplin.
DEIB progress points featured in the 2021-22 impact report follow below. Refer to the 2021-22 DEIB Impact Report for a full list of Pamplin DEIB highlights.
Building a diverse and inclusive Pamplin community
Increasing enrollment of underrepresented minority or underserved students remains a strategic Pamplin priority. Over the past five years, enrollment of underrepresented minority or underserved undergraduate students increased by 56 percent. At the graduate degree level, the college saw a 47 percent increase in enrollment of underrepresented minority students in master’s programs and a 44 percent increase in enrollment of underrepresented minority students in Ph.D. programs over the past five years.
Expanding the number of underrepresented minority full-time teaching and research faculty also remains a priority. Over the past five years, the number of underrepresented minority tenured faculty increased by 50 percent. The number of underrepresented minority tenure-track faculty increased by 200 percent. The total number of underrepresented minority non-tenure track faculty increased by 33 percent.
Office for DEIB
There are four core values emphasized throughout Pamplin and Virginia Tech’s strategic plans: diverse and inclusive communities, knowledge and innovation, opportunity and affordability, and excellence and integrity. These values remain foundational to the college’s vision, mission, and strategic priorities.
In strong alignment with these tenets, the Office for DEIB launched in June 2021 to “inspire a sense of belonging for students and stakeholders using inclusive and innovative practices to elevate the human experience by developing culturally informed community leaders” with the mission of “transforming leaders through strategic initiatives and programming that integrates models of excellence in cutting edge research, service, and business education.”
Led by a team of five full-time employees, the office delivers a range of programs and services to support efforts to build infrastructure for sustained transformation, achieve diverse representation across students and faculty, advance the academic mission, and foster an equitable and inclusive community.
Supporting student success
While Pamplin continues to observe strong enrollment and the college’s four-year graduation average continues to surpass the university’s average, achievement disparities have been identified within segments of Pamplin’s diverse student population.
To help address these disparities, the Office for DEIB appointed a director for student success, Emily McCorkle, and implements strategic interventions as set forth by Pamplin’s Undergraduate Programs Office, led by Lara Khansa, associate dean and Sonny Merryman Professor. These activities include outreach and engagement programs and events – many of which are highlighted below – to bolster the empowerment, resiliency, and belonging of undergraduate students.
Programming and events
The Office for DEIB hosts a range of programming and events aimed at supporting and celebrating students and employees and building community and cultural humility among all Pamplin stakeholders.
One hallmark program is Pamplin’s Inspiring Possibilities (PIP) Academy, a 10-day summer residential program designed to introduce high school students from diverse backgrounds to the world of business and business careers. The inaugural PIP Academy took place in July 2022 and included 27 student participants.
The Pamplin Undergraduate Mentoring Program provides support to students with their transition into and through college by connecting them with resources to help them develop academically, personally, and professionally.
The upcoming Inspire Excellence Academy is a first-year student enrichment program designed to support the college transition and advance student holistic success. Participants immerse themselves in growth opportunities to develop as culturally informed leaders to help foster a more diverse and inclusive Pamplin community.
Just some of the events hosted by the Office for DEIB in 2021-22 were Salute to Veterans Day: The Embodiment of Ut Prosim (That I May Serve) which honored those Hokies who personify the motto of Virginia Tech; Claiming Your Seat at the Table, an event where women in business gathered to learn, build community, and network with alumni leaders; and Paving the Way, which highlighted the lived experiences of first-generation college students at various life stages.
“DEIB fuels our community through its focus on people,” said Hall. “I like to imagine DEIB as humanity-in-action. It acknowledges and affirms the unique standpoints of individuals and groups, and yet is intentional about addressing, or redressing, their issues with compassion and empathy.”
Hall continued, “There is power in our diversity as citizens of Pamplin, and I am confident that our individual and collective contributions will elevate the lived experiences of future Hokies for generations to come.”
“Diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging are foundational to our continued success as a college and university. Driven by our Principles of Community, we each play a role in creating a diverse and inclusive environment at Pamplin where all students, faculty, and staff can learn, grow, and thrive,” said Roberta "Robin" Russell, interim dean of Pamplin.
For more information about the work of the Office for DEIB, including efforts to educate and celebrate the Pamplin workforce, and increase underrepresented minority representation on Pamplin boards through the Pamplin Advisory Council DEIB Task Force (now committee), or ways to advance DEIB, please refer to the final report and contact firstname.lastname@example.org.