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Diverse fields of study that share one
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11 students posing for a picture at APHA 2019

Our Commitment to Diversity

The college's commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion is demonstrated through collaborative initiatives, research, course curriculum, and outreach events. We embrace diversity, equity, and inclusion as core values in both mission and vision. Our goal is to empower a diverse generation of leaders and scholars who promote human health, development, and quality of life throughout the lifespan.

Through teaching, research, and outreach programs, we strive to communicate the importance of diversity to both college and community members. Diversity is broadly defined by the college as "human differences," including differences in age, social class, disability, race, ethnicity, immigrant status, gender, gender expression, religion, veteran status, and sexual orientation.

Department Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Statements

To foster an inclusive climate within the college, each department has a diversity and inclusion committee, comprised of faculty, staff, and students. The committees work to identify areas in their respective units that will enhance the diversity of scholarly achievement and workplace climate. Below are statements from departments on fostering diversity.

Biobehavioral Health icon-olus-circle

Biobehavioral Health strives to promote a climate of respect and fairness. We work together to discuss issues that inhibit our implementation of the highest standards for diversity, equity and inclusion and we aspire toward a community free of racism, sexism, xenophobia, homophobia, religious intolerance, and expressions of hate, bigotry and prejudices.



Communication Sciences and Disorders icon-olus-circle

Communication Sciences and Disorders is committed to the promotion and enhancement of the diversity of the CSD undergraduate and graduate student body. Our department aligns strongly with Penn State's core values of diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from students from underrepresented groups.

We adhere to the Statement for Equitable Treatment in all interactions. In addition, we have identified key issues to address in support of diversity and equity within the CSD community.

The College of HHD Office of Diversity and Inclusion can assist diverse students in achieving their personal and professional goals. 


Dean’s Office icon-olus-circle

The Dean’s Office seeks to foster a culture of respect and inclusion and to offer programs and environments that promote diversity and the acceptance of differences. 

Members: Barbara King, Matt Dunmire, Terry Schiavone, Mattea Derr, Rob Peeler, Jeff Hill, Sarah Richards, Rhonda Spychalski, Nyla Darbeau 

Health Policy and Administration icon-olus-circle

Health Policy and Administration Diversity Committee aims to work in partnership with program stakeholders, students, faculty, staff, and alumni to inform and support learning. Our goal is to discover and disseminate new knowledge and scholarship, informed by historical and systemic barriers to health equity while working to inform efforts to eliminate health disparities in all settings.  We endeavor to create and sustain a learning environment where future leaders can recognize and acknowledge inequity in the US healthcare system.  In so doing, our goal is to equip future leaders with the knowledge and the training to transform the health system into one of inclusion, equity, and cultural safety for all.

Members: Jeannette Rogowski (Chair), Edith Wafula, Selena Ortiz, Chris Calkins

Human Development and Family Studies icon-olus-circle

The Department of Human Development and Family Studies is committed to encouraging and fostering an environment in which every member of our community can flourish, by opening conversations and creating opportunities to promote understanding, respect, and growth.

The HDFS Committee for Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI) works diligently to foster equity in the department, seeking feedback from community members and organizing additional learning opportunities as we work toward greater inclusion.

Additionally, a number of department faculty, staff, and graduate students are part of Penn State's Safer People, Safer Places network, and are available as a resource for the LGBTQ+ community.

Members: Molly Countermine (chair), Robert Roeser, Samantha Tornello, Kristopher Struckmeyer, Terry Cummins, Riki Slayday, Nathan Chang

Kinesiology icon-olus-circle

The Department of Kinesiology recognizes that racism, gender inequality, and systemic barriers to advancement for minority or marginalized groups exist within academic institutions. To address these problems and affirm our commitment to the principles of diversity, equity, inclusion, and access, we seek to create a community that is diverse, inclusive, and equitable in terms of race, gender, sexual identity and orientation, ability, access, and country of origin. It is only through valuing a diversity of opinions, perspectives, and backgrounds that we can achieve our goals of excellence in teaching and scholarship while maintaining an environment that is safe and welcoming for all our faculty, staff, and students.  

To meet these goals, we pledge the following: 

  •  We value all our community members and embrace the differences that bring a richness of perspective and experience to our interactions with one another. In keeping with these values, we recruit and welcome qualified faculty, staff, and students from groups that have been traditionally underrepresented. Access to department resources and facilities must be equitable and fair. We believe that a department that is welcoming of a variety of cultures, viewpoints, and abilities is one that is best positioned to prepare future leaders, produce outstanding research, and serve the Commonwealth.
  • We expect all members of our community to treat one another with respect and dignity. We communicate with one another in a manner that is respectful, and criticism, when it is necessary, is offered constructively. Every member of our community has the right to a workplace free from abuse, harassment, intimidation, discrimination, and bullying. Behavior or language that is racist, ethnocentric, sexist, homophobic, transphobic, ableist, or otherwise marginalizing is never tolerated. 
  •  We continually work to improve our department and ourselves by actively promoting and engaging with the principles of diversity, equity, inclusion, and access. Through frequent educational programs, professional development, and advocacy, we reinforce these values within our community and promote awareness of culturally shaped values, beliefs, perceptions, and biases. 

Members: Sadhna Agrawal , Jonna Belanger , Natasha Dinsmore , Bob Eckhardt , Javi Lopez Frias , Beth Oberdick , Steve Piazza (chair), Anna Render (GR) , Taylor Rogers (UG) , Tarkesh Singh , Gwendolyn Thomas , Mary Waechter , Nancy Williams (ex officio)

Nutritional Sciences icon-olus-circle

Nutritional Sciences Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion committee has a number of ongoing projects, including: learning tables, recruiting diverse colloquium speakers, updating curriculum, and hosting a DEI book club. 

Members: Gina Pazzaglia (co-chair), Alison Borkowska (co-chair), Amy Moore (postdoc coordinator), Vishal Singh (faculty), Steve Kodish (faculty), Amrita Arcot (PhD student), Cara Ruggerio (Ph.D. student), Raphia Molou (Ph.D. student), Lois Oviawe (Ph.D. student), Evaniya Shakya (Ph.D. student), Emily Ballou (Ph.D. student), Ashley Flores (Ph.D. student)

Recreation, Park, and Tourism Management icon-olus-circle

Recreation, Park, and Tourism Management is dedicated to creating an inclusive environment that embraces diversity and is free of discrimination, including harassment. 

The DEI&B Committee in the Department of Recreation, Park, and Tourism Management is dedicated to creating an inclusive department in which everyone feels welcome and respected. We encourage and support the development of cultural awareness and intercultural sensitivity by providing opportunities for positive intergroup dialogues and celebrating diversity in our office environment, classrooms, and communities. 

Members: Jen Agans (Co-Chair), Bing Pan (Co-Chair), John Dattilo, Danielle Lawson, Ayse Akyildiz 

School of Hospitality Management icon-olus-circle

The School of Hospitality Management celebrates diversity and the international aspects of its programs.  

The School of Hospitality Management DEI&B Committee is made up of teaching faculty, graduate faculty, and staff who work to ensure that all members of the SHM and PSU community feel included and like they belong. The committee works to increase representation of individuals from a wide array of diverse backgrounds throughout the school and provides resources and guidance to faculty and staff about how to make our classrooms, student organizations, and overall school more welcoming and inclusive to all members of the community. 

Members: Phil Jolly, Mike Ahlgren, Jeff Heim, Maria Kim, JP Ranjeva, John O'Neill, Marja Verbeeten