In its ongoing efforts to advance diversity, equity and inclusion, UC Davis has become one of three charter members of the SEA Change Initiative of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, or AAAS.
Membership is “a public statement of commitment to success for all in STEM, a commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion within the institution,” Shirley Malcom, director of the SEA Change Initiative and a senior advisor for the AAAS, said today (Aug. 11) in an association news release.
In 2019, UC Davis was one of three universities to receive SEA Change’s inaugural award for completing a self-assessment of policies and culture and creating an action plan. Now the initiative is transforming into a membership organization and has welcomed UC Davis, North Carolina State University and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign as charter members.
The initiative supports systemic change by encouraging universities to reform their policies and procedures that marginalize or exclude individuals on the basis of gender, race, ethnicity, disability status and more, the AAAS release said.
SEA Change in all disciplines
SEA stands for STEM Equity Achievement, reflecting the association's focus on the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. UC Davis, though, is involving all disciplines in its SEA Change program, said Philip Kass, vice provost for Academic Affairs.
The AAAS initiative will offer a community in which member institutions can form partnerships and share best practices; access to resources including a research repository, courses, trainings and virtual events; and an expanded recognition program.
“There's a real advantage when you become part of a community,” Kass said. “Nobody's going to want to be left behind.”