The Office of Equity, Diversity and Compliance (EDC) and the Office of Disability Services (ODS) are charged to ensure that equal access to education and employment is guaranteed, respectful treatment is assured, and an appreciation of differences is fostered for all members of the university community.
EDC staff guide and monitor search and hiring procedures, affirmative action and equal opportunity compliance, recruitment and admission strategies, and the exit interview process.
Complaints about unlawful or impermissible harassment or discrimination from any member of the university community are investigated by EDC staff and brought to resolution.
EDC staff provide workshops in harassment prevention and responsible human relations to any on- or off-campus classes, organizations, departments or units.
EDC sponsors the Open Door program and is a founding sponsor of the annual Diversity Celebration.
History of the Office
- In 1990, the seeds for what would become the Office of Equity, Diversity and Compliance were planted when a Women's Studies major was initiated through the Department of Interdisciplinary Studies. In 1991, Dr. Melissa Barth, faculty member in the English Department, was named the acting director of Women's Studies. In 1992, the Office of Women's Studies became the Office of Women's Concerns. Dr. Barth was named coordinator, and her title was changed to director in 1994.
- In 1996, under the leadership of Chancellor Francis Borkowski and Provost Harvey Durham, the Office of Women's Concerns was once again reorganized, this time as the Equity Office. The mission of the office was to offer university personnel and students a neutral and confidential (as permitted by law and policy) to start resolving problems involving alleged harassment or discrimination.
- Dr. Barth was named director. The Department of Women's Studies became a separate, university-wide academic program.
- In 2002, Dr. Linda K. Robinson was named acting director, and in 2005, director of the Equity Office.
- In 2006, the University's AA/EEO compliance work was assigned to the office's portfolio, and the name was changed to the Office of Equity and Compliance. Ms. Linda M. Foulsham, J.D. joined the staff as the director of AA/EEO compliance.
- In 2008, under the leadership of Chancellor Kenneth Peacock and Provost Stan Aeschleman, the Equity Office was again reorganized, this time as the Office of Equity, Diversity and Compliance. Dr. Robinson was named associate vice chancellor for equity, diversity and compliance and the university's first chief diversity officer.
- In 2009, when Dr. Robinson retired, the positions of associate vice chancellor and chief diversity officer were eliminated. Ms. Linda Foulsham, J.D., then director of AA/EEO Compliance, was named director of the office and the university's Title IX coordinator.
- Currently, the office is conducting a national search for the associate vice chancellor for equity, diversity and compliance.