During these socially and politically turbulent times nationally and globally, it is essential that higher education better understands how to cultivate a new generation of social justice oriented leaders. This priority area will engage research and scholarship as well as scholars and practitioners to explore, develop and propose new models of leadership development that directly centers social justice as the outcome. Efforts and initiatives include:
The Social Action Leadership for Transformation (SALT) Model
The concepts of the SALT model represent a new model of leadership that directly centers social justice as the outcome of individual and group indicators related to diversity and equity. A valid and reliable, psychometric scale has been developed to accompany this conceptual model and measure the attitudes and values of student leaders in relation to their social justice leadership orientation. The scale is currently being tested and will be made available for researchers in 2018. Moving forward, researchers can utilize the SALT model to examine a wide range of topics related to leadership. For example, the SALT model can be used to facilitate future research by providing a conceptual lens to, among other things, examine how social justice leadership development manifests in different communities and excavate environmental and individual barriers to cultivate social justice leadership orientations. The SALT model is developed in partnership with Sam Museus, Associate Professor of Higher Education and Student Affairs and Director of the National Institute for Transformation and Equity (NITE) at Indiana University.
The Roles and Experiences of Academic Diversity Officers
In response to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DE&I) challenges in higher education, many college/university institutions have developed or re-imagined diversity management positions at the academic unit level (e.g., DE&I Program Officers or Chief Diversity Officers appointed within local schools/colleges). We label this category of positions academic diversity officers (ADOs). These ADO roles have important implications for action and change at the local/unit level, as they are designed to support DEI efforts in ways that consider the structures, cultures, and needs of their individual units. This qualitative case study focuses on the creation of such positions across multiple schools/colleges at one research university. A primary goal is to understand the strategies, activities, networks, resources, and supports necessary for the success of ADOs. This project is a partnership of NCID and the University of Michigan’s Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (ODEI).