Strategic Plan 2009-2014

Luther College Diversity Center

Strategic Plan 2009-2014

“In the reforming spirit of Martin Luther, Luther College affirms the liberating power of faith and learning. As people of all backgrounds, we embrace diversity and challenge one another to learn in community, to discern our callings, and to serve with distinction for the common good.”

From Luther College Mission Statement

Introduction

The Luther College Diversity Center (LDC) strategic plan for 2009-14 reflects the mission of Luther College, connects to Transformed by the Journey: A Sesquicentennial Strategic Plan, and builds on Valuing Diversity: Promoting Educational Excellence, the LDC’s first strategic plan. The LDC inaugural strategic plan was built around goals related to access, innovation, inclusion, and advocacy.  The results of the first LDC plan included: 1) efforts to increase educational access for international and U.S. students of color, 2) efforts to foster diversity awareness as an innovative aspect of academic excellence, 3) efforts to foster inclusion by focusing on creating a welcoming campus and community climate, and 4) advocacy on behalf of underrepresented students.  In short, as part of its initial development, the LDC supported students from diverse backgrounds, created partnerships to improve the climate for diversity on campus and in Decorah and increased diversity awareness on campus.

The 2009-14 strategic plan for the Diversity Center involves continuing to work with international and multicultural students while working with relevant departments to bring broader diversity to campus, to better understand the diversity we have, and to create an atmosphere on campus where everyone feels valued, respected, and safe.

The 2009-14 LDC strategic plan also builds on the central insight of the Center‘s 2008-09 external program review. The review found that the Diversity Center produced significant results on campus but that the goal of institutionalizing diversity as a core value for Luther College should be part of its important on-going work. Institutionalizing diversity means that every student at Luther understands that they can both contribute to and benefit from campus diversity. Institutionalizing diversity also involves campus wide ownership of efforts to enhance diversity across the institution. The key assets of the Luther Diversity Center will support institutional efforts to be a campus that embraces diversity.

The assets that the Luther Diversity Center can employ to institutionalize diversity include: the LDC mission, model of operation, and experienced staff. These assets have been used to produce excellent programming, provide support services for international and U.S. students of color, and increase the Center’s legitimacy as a valued partner in educating all students. The new strategic plan envisions the LDC as a resource for institutional change and as a partner in helping the college to systematically implement policies and procedures that will expand the range and the benefits of diversity.