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Council works to boost EDI initiatives

March 18, 2022 5:45 PM
Carolyn Scofield scofield@tulane.edu

A newly-formed council connects people from all departments at the Tulane University School of Medicine to work on equity, diversity and inclusion initiatives. The mission of the EDI Council is to allow members of the SoM community to come together and share ideas, discuss best practices and develop solutions that can help create a more welcoming place for all. The council is one of many initiatives underway at the School of Medicine to improve EDI.

“People are encouraged to share not only what’s working, but also the challenges they’re experiencing,” said Bennetta Horne, Assistant Dean for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion and Director of the Office of Multicultural Affairs.  “For people working on these EDI initiatives, I think hearing that they’re not alone in this work has given them hope.”

The council includes members nominated by department chairs or leaders from across the School of Medicine, the Tulane National Primate Research Center, and Tulane University Medical Group.

“We wanted to have people who are engaged and intentional and purposeful in the work,” said Horne. “Representatives can bring whatever EDI initiatives their departments are working on to the council to workshop them.”

As the Assistant Dean for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, Horne’s involvement in the Council offers departments a direct line to School of Medicine Dean’s office and other top Tulane University administrators.

The EDI council meets monthly, and although it has held only a few meetings so far  Jorge Valentin Diaz, Senior Program Coordinator in the Office of Multicultural Affairs, says he can feel the excitement of the group.

“It’s like we struck a match,” said Valentin Diaz. “It’s exciting to hear what people have been trying, and to learn that they are as passionate as we are. We’re trying to capture the energy people have about improving EDI at the School of Medicine and provide the support that keeps moving it forward.”

Tulane University School of Medicine is committed to developing and growing a workforce that reflects the rich diversity of race, of gender, of religious belief, of national origin, of ethnicity, of age, of ability, and of sexual orientation found in the unique community and culture of New Orleans.