Diversity is central to providing and maintaining a quality educational environment. Missouri State University is deeply committed to developing educated persons equipped to contribute to the interdependent world in which we now live. The University shares a belief in the values of diversity articulated in this American Council on Education's 1998 Statement on Diversity:
Diversity enriches the educational experience
We learn from those whose experiences, beliefs and perspectives are different from our own, and these lessons can be taught best in a richly diverse intellectual and social environment.
Diversity prompts personal growth and a healthy society
Diversity challenges stereotyped preconceptions, encourages critical thinking and it helps students learn to communicate effectively with people of varied backgrounds.
Diversity strengthens communities and the workplace
Education within a diverse setting prepares students to become good citizens in an increasingly complex, pluralistic society; it fosters mutual respect and teamwork; and it builds communities whose members are judged by the quality of their character and their contributions.
Diversity enhances America's economic competitiveness
Sustaining the nation's prosperity in the 21st century will require us to make effective use of the talents and abilities of all our citizens, in work settings that bring together individuals from diverse backgrounds and cultures.
As a result of these values, Missouri State is committed to creating physically and psychologically safe environments where students, faculty and staff will be valued for both their similarities and differences. Differences should be viewed as valued resources for academic, cultural and personal development. A challenging atmosphere which fosters the exploration of issues from multiple perspectives will enhance intellectual exploration as well as personal, professional and institutional growth.
Over the five years of this plan, the University is committing the resources necessary to successfully implement strategies to achieve greater diversity.