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The Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System™ (STARS) is a transparent, self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance.

Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 57.22
Liaison Roxane Beigel-Coryell
Submission Date June 30, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Southern Oregon University
PA-6: Support for Underrepresented Groups

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 3.00 / 3.00 Roxane Beigel-Coryell
Sustainability & Recycling Coordinator
Facilities Management & Planning
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have a publicly posted non-discrimination statement? :

The non-discrimination statement, including the website URL where the policy is publicly accessible:


Southern Oregon University has an extensive policy for Equal Opportunity, Harassment, and Sexual Misconduct. The full policy is available at the link provided, but the nondiscrimination clause of the policy reads as follows:

1. Southern Oregon University Policy on Nondiscrimination
SOU adheres to all federal and state civil rights laws banning discrimination in institutions of higher education. SOU will not discriminate against any employee, applicant for employment, student or applicant for admission on the basis of race, religion, hearing status, color, sex, pregnancy, political affiliation, religion, creed, ethnicity, national origin (including ancestry), citizenship status, physical or mental disability, body size, age, marital status, family relationship, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity or expression, veteran or military status (including special disabled veteran, Vietnam era veteran, or recently separated veteran), predisposing genetic characteristics, domestic violence victim status or any other protected category under applicable local, state or federal law, including protections for those opposing discrimination or participating in any grievance process on campus or within the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission or other human rights agencies.

This policy covers nondiscrimination in employment and in access to educational opportunities. Therefore, any member of the campus community, guest or visitor who acts to deny, deprive or limit the educational, employment, residential or social access, benefits or opportunities of any member of the campus community on the basis of their actual or perceived membership in the protected classes listed above is in violation of the University policy on nondiscrimination. When brought to the attention of the University, any such discrimination will be appropriately remedied by the University according to the procedures below and any applicable collective bargaining agreement.

Does the institution have a discrimination response protocol or committee (sometimes called a bias response team) to respond to and support those who have experienced or witnessed a bias incident, act of discrimination or hate crime?:

A brief description of the institution’s discrimination response protocol or team (including examples of actions taken during the previous three years):

The campus Bias Response team meets every other week to review bias reports that have come in, to think of appropriate responses to incidents, develop proactive programming and policy impact or development. For example, we saw a trend with Trans Students receiving bias and talked to the people directly related, but also created trainings for the community to be more supportive and created a new name procedure so that students would not be outed. In the past three years, we have also updated our Nondiscrimination Policy and are training employees to hear discrimination complaints.

Does the institution have programs specifically designed to recruit students from underrepresented groups?:

Does the institution have programs specifically designed to recruit staff from underrepresented groups?:

Does the institution have programs specifically designed to recruit faculty from underrepresented groups?:

A brief description of the institution’s programs to recruit students, staff and/or faculty from underrepresented groups:

The Diversity Advocate Program is a three workshop series to train employee to advocate for diverse and inclusive search processes. The session topics are the Value of Diversity, Implicit Bias in the Search, and Nuts and Bolts of being a Diversity Advocate. We have also worked on resources to place position descriptions in diverse publications.

The university also has formal partnerships and programs to recruit students from underrepresented groups, including the Pirates to Raiders Pipeline Program; Bulldogs to Raiders, Academia Latina, Latino Family Day, Konoway ( Native Youth Program), and the position of Native Nations Liason, who recruits students from native nations.

Does the institution have mentoring, counseling, peer support, academic support, or other programs to support students from underrepresented groups on campus?:

Does the institution have mentoring, counseling, peer support or other programs to support staff from underrepresented groups on campus?:

Does the institution have mentoring, counseling, peer support or other programs to support faculty from underrepresented groups on campus?:

A brief description of the institution’s programs to support students, staff and/or faculty from underrepresented groups:

Southern Oregon University has several programs and resource centers for individuals from underrepresented groups, including our Multicultural Resource Center, Queer Resource Center, Success at Southern TRiO program, identity-based clubs, the First Year Mentor Program, and LEAD Mentorship Program.

Success at Southern, a TRiO Student Support Services Program, is committed to increasing the college retention and graduation rates of eligible participants. By providing a variety of services to meet students' needs, we assist eligible participants in clarifying their goals, succeeding academically in their chosen program of study, and graduating with a bachelor's degree in a timely manner.

The First Year Mentor Program is committed to strengthening the first year experience through provision and fostering of a meaningful connection with an academically successful mentor and established student leader. The mentor relationships will increase first-year participation in student life, exposure to student leadership, and academic success. The mentoring program pairs first-year students with returning students to assist, connect, and increase retention rates for students from the first year to the second year. The First Year Mentor Program will provide a greater sense of individual agency, as well as affiliation with the diverse and inclusive community at SOU.

The mission of the Queer Resource Center of Southern Oregon University is to provide visible and accessible advocacy for the needs of queer students while expanding awareness and knowledge of queer issues on campus and in our community. The QRC works to encourage relationship building and support systems in order to empower every person to have a positive university experience, to grow as a self-aware individual, and to be a responsible community member.

The Southern Oregon University Multicultural Resource Center (MRC) endeavors to create an inclusive community that recognizes, celebrates, and supports the diverse life experiences of the SOU community. Toward this goal, we seek to support the African-American, Latino/Hispanic American, Native American, Pacific Islander, American Asian, and Queer communities of SOU by maintaining an open center where these students and staff may connect with a variety of constituencies including students, student organizations, administration and staff to explore the multifaceted issues of race, class, ethnicity, gender, and sexual orientation.

Programs to support faculty and staff from underrepresented groups include Employees of Color Lunches and LGBTQ Lunches. SOU's Director of Diversity & Inclusion hosts lunches each term for underrepresented employees to come together. A special lunch is held for employees of color and one for LGBTQ employees. They tend to have about 15-20 employees of color attend and about 4-10 LGBTQ employees attend.

Does the institution have training and development programs, teaching fellowships and/or other programs that specifically aim to support and prepare students from underrepresented groups for careers as faculty members?:

A brief description of the institution’s programs to support and prepare students from underrepresented groups for careers as faculty members:

Southern Oregon University supports and prepares students from underrepresented groups for potential careers as faculty members through the McNair Scholars Program. The Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program was established in 1989, and is a Federal TRIO Program funded at select institutions across the United States and Puerto Rico by the U.S. Department of Education. The McNair Program is designed to prepare eligible undergraduate students for doctoral studies through involvement in research and other scholarly activities. In October 2003, Southern Oregon University received a grant from the U.S. Department of Education and became one of 151 McNair Programs in the United States.

The SOU McNair Program is specifically designed to ensure that Scholars complete their undergraduate degrees, enroll in a graduate program, and have the knowledge, skills, and background preparation that are required to successfully complete a Ph.D. program.

Does the institution produce a publicly accessible inventory of gender-neutral bathrooms on campus?:

Does the institution offer housing options to accommodate the special needs of transgender and transitioning students?:

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.