DIMP 2.0

The University Eye Center (UEC) patient demographics show that the clinic continues to have a racially and ethnically diverse patient base. However, the collection of demographic data was found to be incomplete, with better data collection occurring when self-report kiosks and electronic tablets were offered to patients. A variety of strategies were recommended to make sure UEC patients continue to be examined by the best trained and prepared student and faculty body. Key climate survey results indicated that respondents have experienced more exclusionary behavior, and bias on campus than the respondents to the same survey in 2016. Data also showed there are challenges in the faculty and staff feeling acknowledged by SUNY Optometry administration. Further study is needed to glean more specific information about these findings. The drop in feelings of inclusion on this survey mirror national trends in higher education as more emphasis has been put on providing spaces and ways that discrimination and bias can be reported. It also follows national trends of increased feelings of discrimination. [i] The committee views these findings as a demonstration that the campus community feels more empowered to speak up about discrimination and bias. The identification of these challenges makes it easier to address these issues in a timely manner. Recommendations of the committee affirm that funding sources for DEI initiatives must be maintained, and expanded to support URM recruitment and inclusive programming on campus. Current outreach efforts were found to be effective, but there is a need to bring awareness of the field of optometry earlier in the academic pathway (i.e., high school students) to meaningfully grow the applicant pool. An emphasis was placed on establishing new relationships with external partners to increase the reach of SUNY Optometry in communities that are traditionally underrepresented on campus. Workshops, interactive educational models, and trainings were recommended for continued education for faculty, student and staff on health equity, social determinants of health, anti-racist and anti-discriminatory practice and other topics related to inclusive excellence. Focus groups amongst a variety of campus subgroups were recommended to better understand how we can create a better sense of inclusion and further foster belonging on campus. The committee identified a need to create accountability structures to ensure that patients treat clinicians and UEC staff through the same anti-discriminatory lens. The committee also recommended we take a fresh look at physical structures in the SUNY Optometry building to make sure they are wholly inclusive. This comprehensive document details a plan to collectively move SUNY Optometry into a better position to matriculate students who are equipped to manage patients who represent diversity in its myriad forms. To do so it recommends that faculty and staff continue to have training and learning opportunities to make educators more adept at teaching and providing care to people of all backgrounds. A master plan document only sets the foundation for the work. The College will have to work together to make the goals of this plan a reality, as we try to move earnestly towards becoming a more inclusive community. .

____________________________________________ [i] Pew Research Center “Widening partisan gaps in perceptions of discrimination against many groups”. Retrieved from https://www.pewresearch.org/politics/2019/04/15/sharp-rise-in-the-share-of-americans-saying-jews-face- discrimination/pp_2019-04-15_discrimination_0-03/ASCO Classification of gender and race/ethnicity of optometry

SUNY Optometry | Diversity and Inclusion Master Plan 2.0 | 20

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