A new Faculty of Applied Health Sciences (FAHS) fundraising initiative is aiming to increase representation of and support for Black, Indigenous and People of Colour (BIPOC) students enrolled in the Faculty’s programs.
Dean Peter Tiidus says fostering a culture of diversity and inclusivity across the University starts with a commitment to Brock’s Institutional Strategic Plan.
“We recognize the strength and benefits a diverse population brings to our community,” Tiidus says. “As a key pillar of Brock’s Institutional Strategic Plan, the University remains committed to building an inclusive and diverse population representing students of the past, present and future. As a Faculty, we strive every day to see this important work gain momentum.”
In response, a new $25,000 gifts initiative has been launched to support the development of a new award, named the Faculty of Applied Health Sciences Diversity and Inclusion Award. These awards will be granted to FAHS students who self identify as BIPOC or under-represented to increase inclusion and representation.
Knowing that the success of Brock’s strategic priorities is largely dependent on the participation of the whole community, including students, staff and faculty, Tiidus is calling on FAHS to support the initiative.
“It is our responsibility to set goals and priorities to complement those of the institution,” Tiidus says. “We look to Brock’s guiding values in developing the future of the FAHS and right now, that future is one of diversity.”
To demonstrate his commitment to this important goal, Tiidus has pledged to personally match all gifts made up to $10,000. Through a gift designated to the students in FAHS, faculty and staff can establish additional financial aid opportunities that will be used to attract and support diverse populations into the Faculty.
“The leadership Dean Tiidus has shown in providing the foundational funds, and in the collaboration to establish this award, is truly exceptional,” says Sonia Dupte, Director, Development and Stewardship. “With generosity and commitment from faculty and staff, the impact of support for this award will be experienced for generations to come.”
Dupte and Tiidus agreed that faculty and staff play an important role in establishing an institution that is a welcoming learning community for all and the opportunities this award will present to diverse students of today and tomorrow.
“In order to continue providing high-quality and forward-thinking education to all of our students, we must immerse them in an authentic community built of classmates, leaders and faculty from diverse groups,” says Tiidus.
Story by Cialyn Carson and Colleen Patterson.