Racial diversity increases among full-time faculty

Racial diversity increases among full-time faculty

Newly-hired full-time faculty members for the fall 2013 semester reflect more racial diversity than last year among the TCU faculty population.

The Office of the Provost reports that 22 percent of the newly-hired faculty members are of a racial minority.

“Research shows that faculty is what actually enables diversity at universities," senior sociology major Miles Davison said. Davison helped publish a 26-page report in April based on a study concerning diversity at the university.

Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Nowell Donovan said the challenge of creating a diverse campus is not limited to TCU.

“This is part of a national problem this country needs to put a lot of effort into solving, and it basically starts with the education system,” Donovan said.

Dean of Admission Ray Brown said he was surprised to find that the race distribution among faculty was akin to that of students.

Brown said that nine percent of the student population was a minority before he came to the university in 2000. However, according to the 1999 TCU Fact Book, 11 percent of the student population was a minority at that time.

When asked about the current diversity at the university, Brown said, “One of the things that is really important for me to establish right from the get-go is that, in my mind, and [TCU Admissions'] opinion…diversity is not limited to race or ethnicity.”

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines diversity as “the condition of having or being composed of differing elements; especially the inclusion of different types of people (as people of different races or cultures).”

Brown said that “diversity” is often viewed too narrowly. He said it can also include nationality, gender, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation and religion.

Along with increasing racial diversity on campus, the university claims Horned Frogs from over 90 countries, according to TCU's International Services.

Junior finance major Roberto Herodier, an international student from El Salvador, said diversity on a college campus is integral to enriching a student’s experience.

“It opens your eyes to the idea that there is a world beyond your home state or home country," Herodier said. "At the same time, it helps you to understand other cultures, and that is essential in an increasingly globalized world.”