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Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at UCCS

Foundational Value for Inclusive Diversity

We value inclusive diversity as a foundation for teaching and scholarship that prepares students, faculty, staff, and community members for both local and global multicultural realities.

Commitment to Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI)

UCCS is committed to being a leading educational institution where all who attend, work and benefit from the campus are valued and respected. We value inclusive diversity as a foundation for teaching and scholarship that prepares students, faculty, staff, and community members for both local and global multicultural engagement.

Equitable Access and Opportunity

Creating a culture of inclusion requires active, intentional, and ongoing engagement with diversity in which all members of the UCCS community feel an authentic sense of belonging.

As an institution committed to equitable access and opportunity, we uphold our commitment to sustainable inclusive excellence by blending diversity, equity, and inclusion into the full fabric of the UCCS community. 

We are committed to fostering an inclusive and supportive campus environment that embraces a culture of belonging, engagement, and learning for all, including individuals with diverse intersecting backgrounds, social identities, abilities, and cultures.

Vice Chancellor for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

Rame Hanna serves as the inaugural Vice Chancellor for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, responsible for guiding and leading institution-wide efforts to advance a culture of belonging at the University of Colorado Colorado Springs (UCCS).

Guided by a commitment to sustainable inclusive excellence, Rame seeks to foster a socially just campus climate that embraces intersectional identities, promotes diverse critical knowledge, and centers the lived experiences of marginalized and underrepresented communities to ensure that all belong and can thrive.

Letter from the Inaugural VCDEI

We have all started a new chapter in our lives, taken a leap of faith, or tried something that may have been out of our comfort zone. Just a few weeks ago, my partner and our goldendoodle packed our car and embarked on a 40-hour drive across the country to start a new life in Colorado Springs. As we passed by all the wonderful cities along the way, I wondered what Colorado Springs would be like and how long it would take for UCCS to feel like home.

VCDEI Fall 2023 Update

I would like to extend a warm welcome to our new and returning community members as we head into fall and commence the academic year. For those who are new to the Mountain Lion community, my name is Rame Hanna and I serve as the Vice Chancellor for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) at UCCS. In this capacity, I guide and lead campus-wide community efforts to foster a culture of inclusion and belonging on campus.

DEI Community Values

We will advance and sustain a culture that promotes the awareness, appreciation, and respect of diversity, while also inspiring agency and social responsibility through holistic approaches to self-awareness and identity development.

We are dedicated to equitable access and opportunity by creating an inclusive learning and work environment that weaves diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) into the full fabric of the UCCS community.

We believe in fostering a culture of inclusion through active, intentional, and ongoing engagement with diversity in which all members of our campus community feel an authentic sense of belonging and thrive.

We embrace a climate of belonging that centers holistic community engagement and supports the mental health and well-being of all our community members, including students, staff, and faculty with diverse intersecting backgrounds, identities, abilities, and cultures.

UCCS Strategic Plan

Foster a Community of Learning, Engagement, and Inclusive Belonging to Nurture the Growth and Success of Faculty, Staff, and Students.

  • Cultivate a culture of inclusive excellence that responds to the diversity of our campus community.
  • Advance a culture of innovative and inclusive pedagogy that is relevant to the academic and professional needs of today’s students.
  • Deepen curricular and co-curricular experiences to foster global perspective, experiential engagement, and professional preparation.
  • Strengthen our culture of health, safety, and wellbeing.
     

UCCS Land Acknowledgement

The University of Colorado Colorado Springs (UCCS) commits to acknowledging the land on which we reside. We honor our Native Indigenous communities past, present, and emerging, and recognize the original inhabitants and traditional guardians of what is now Colorado Springs. 

We honor this land as the ancestral home of the ‘Nuuchiu’, which includes the Northern Ute, the Southern Ute, and the Ute Mountain Ute Peoples. The ‘Nuuchiu’ originally referred to Pike’s Peak as ‘Tava-kaavi’, or Sun Mountain, being the first peak of the Shining Mountains to see the sun’s rays.

We also recognize the many Indigenous Peoples in this region, including the Apache Nation, the Arapaho Nation, the Cheyenne Nation, the Comanche Tribe, and the Kiowa Tribe, and their historical and continuing relationships as stewards of this land.

Land acknowledgments do not exist in the past or as historical context. Colonialism is a current and ongoing practice, and thus we remain mindful of its present impacts. As an institution of higher education, we share the responsibility to actively listen, reflect, and center the histories and lived experiences of Indigenous Peoples.

In community, we will work to dismantle the tragic and oppressive systems that displaced Native Peoples and commit to promoting Indigenous visibility and re-indigenizing our spaces.

 


Nuuchiu is pronounced (New-chew), meaning “the people”

Tava-Kaavi is pronounced (Tah-vah Kaav), meaning “sun mountain”

LGBTQ+ Friendly Campus

The Campus Pride Index has a strong theoretical research foundation in LGBTQ current programs, practices, and policies for safer, more inclusive campus learning environments. The index tool has been tested extensively since 2001 and was recently updated with new, higher LGBTQ national benchmarks in 2015. The Campus Pride Index is a vital tool for assisting campuses in learning ways to improve their LGBTQ campus life and ultimately shape the educational experience to be more inclusive, welcoming, and respectful of LGBTQ and ally people. The index is owned and operated by Campus Pride, the leading national nonprofit organization for student leaders and campus groups working to create safer, more LGBTQ-Friendly learning environments at colleges and universities.

Military Friendly Campus

Institutions earning the Military Friendly® Schools Awards designation were evaluated using public data sources and responses from a proprietary survey. Over 1,800 schools participated in the 2022-2023 survey, 665 schools earned awards level designations in Gold, Silver, and Bronze. 282 were selected for “Gold” award status for their leading practices, outcomes, and effective programs. 

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