Higher education loves diversity, unless it involves thinking differently.

The College Fix reports:

Intellectual diversity missing from Penn State’s new faculty hiring policy on ‘underrepresented groups’

Pennsylvania State University is taking formal steps to increase the diversity of its faculty. But the new faculty hiring policy is largely skin-deep.

Academic organizations told The College Fix they were disappointed that the “landmark legislation,” as Penn State called it in a press release, gave no consideration to intellectual diversity.

At its last meeting of the school year April 28, the Faculty Senate updated its hiring policy, known as AC-13, for the first time since 1999. The new policy puts an emphasis on diversity, equity, and inclusion.

“Twenty years later, the policy no longer effectively guides or accurately reflects hiring practices at Penn State,” reads the document, known as Appendix N, that explains the revisions to AC-13.

“In particular, AC-13 does not provide guidance to academic units about how to conduct faculty searches that attend to issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion,” it says.

The revisions not only “align” the policy with the university’s “current practices and strategic goals” but also “add specificity” on matters such as the composition and responsibilities of search committees and their members, the document says.

While it refers to “underrepresented groups” as the target of outreach, the legislation only refers to specific groups in a section on “internal searches.” Those groups are “women, racial/ethnic minorities, individuals with disabilities, protected veterans, and members of other represented groups,” undefined.

The words “intellectual” and “view,” as in viewpoint, do not appear in either Appendix N or the press release.


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