Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Initiatives - Psychiatry

Our Commitment to EDI

The faculty, staff and training residents of Tulane Psychiatry, all want to be part of an organization that is committed to upholding the values of inclusivity, equity, and diversity. We understand that this statement is only the beginning of an ongoing discussion and not a substitute for action and change.

As recent events have shed light on deeply concerning issues of racism within our Tulane community and society as a whole, we acknowledge that these concerns are interconnected with those that are local and global, from the past and in the present. We acknowledge our own complicated history is filled with examples when we have proudly served our community, and painful examples of when we have fallen short.  We see this as an opportunity to be held accountable for positive change through recruitment, education, mentorship, and advocacy. Click to Read More

The department is committed to fostering a workforce that reflects the rich diversity of our culture. They advertise for faculty on a variety of sites and periodicals in order to appeal to a wide demographic across multiple data points, and are currently interviewing for a Chief EDI Officer whose duties will include working closely with faculty and staff search committees, residency and fellowship program leadership, and department/division leadership to provide effective strategies for identifying diverse candidates, retention, and addressing and mitigating bias in the screening and selection processes. 

The training programs are dedicated to the recruitment of individuals who bring a wide range of demographics to the residency, including race, gender, ethnicity, age, religious affiliations, national origin, and of sexual orientation, abilities, talents, and interests.  Our recruiters are trained to seek out diverse applicants. Our residents are active participants in recruitment season, including application reviews, interviewing, and in rank list selection.  During the resident selection process, we focus on data points other that just board scores or publications. For example, we look closely at the hobbies and interest section so that we can interview a class that has a wide range of different interests. We encourage residents to develop bonds outside of work, and have had residents form trivia teams, intramural sports teams, and even a music band. Each year one of our training directors attends various meetings including the American Psychiatric Association, American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, and the Association of Medicine and Psychiatry so that we may advertise to candidates from different areas of the country and different cultural backgrounds. We also participate in virtual residency fairs for underrepresented medical students. We allow time off to observe holidays for diverse religions and have policies in place for maternal and paternal leave. The city of New Orleans and Tulane University foster engagement with the LGBTQ community as well. We are fortunate that Tulane has many faculty certified as diversity mentors through Tulane, including in the psychiatry department.

We believe that education plays a key role in cultivating equity, diversity and inclusion, as are committed to furthering the knowledge and competency of its residents, fellows, and faculty.  The department has had a Diversity Committee since 2016 to promote diversity and inclusion in resident curriculum. They created a curriculum for residents and psychology trainees that includes group discussions on tenets related to undoing racism, and diversity and healthcare equality. In addition, residents have the opportunity to participate in a variety of diversity action groups such as a steering committee, a discussion group with a specific focus on issues of diversity that arise in the clinical and academic setting specific focus on issues of diversity that arise in the clinical and academic setting, self-improvement, recruitment and retention, curriculum and training,   community involvement group, film club, and book club.  Subsequently these groups met monthly.  The department is also invested in providing didactic curriculum on equity, diversity and inclusion.  For example, last year on quarter of our Grand Rounds were dedicated to healthcare disparities, implicit bias, and cultural psychiatry.  The resident’s also have a cultural psychiatry course to promote proficiency in these domains.

We are incredibly proud to train and practice in New Orleans, one of the most special, resilient, and eclectic cities in our country. We commit to seeing our patients as more than just patients, but as individuals who make up the backbone of New Orleans, who contribute to the wonderful and unique community for which we are known. This means that we approach every interaction as a chance to embrace humility, to learn from our shared humanity and our lived histories.

We believe that not only our program, but all people will only be able to flourish when we truly commit to valuing diversity in race, ethnicity, gender identity, disability, religion, sexual orientation, and socioeconomic status. It is imperative that the education and training within our department and all of Tulane be such a space.

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Departmental EDI Initiatives

The Tulane Department of Psychiatry strives to foster a learning environment in which trainees, staff and faculty can learn and grow in conversation and collaboration with each other. We aim to embed discussions about social justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion (JEDI) into every aspect of our program, including clinical care, supervision, didactics, and research. Several initiatives have been implemented within the department to address JEDI issues and aid in the growth and development of its members (see graphic below). All trainees, staff and faculty are welcome to participate. These include:

  • Faculty Diversity Committee – Open to interested faculty members, Department-wide (ongoing, meets monthly)
  • Diversity Informed Tenets for Work with Infants, Children & Families discussions –open to all faculty, staff, and trainees, Department-wide (held on four Fridays in the summer)
  • Multiculturalism Class for Trainees – mandatory for all psychology and child psychiatry trainees (meets Fridays from September-December facilitated by child section faculty)
  • Social Justice Action Groups – Open to all interested faculty, staff and trainees; members of the Diversity Committee serve as coordinators
    • Film Club (meets monthly)
    • Book Club (meets every other month)
    • Advocacy, Consumerism and Community Engagement (ACCE) group – contributes content for the monthly EDI newsletter, including information about a particular group or cause, community events, businesses to support in the local community, and ways to get involved

*Books, films and topics of discussion are generated by the members of those groups.

  • EDI Steering Committee – Tasked with the goal of developing a five-year strategic plan, which includes supporting the provision of culturally-humble clinical services, generating research with an intentional focus on issues of diversity, enhancing culturally-sensitive interactions among faculty, staff and trainees, and creating a culturally-attuned environment that is welcoming and affirming of individuals with different intersecting identities. Four subcommittees were created:

    • The Curriculum and Training subcommittee aims to assist faculty in infusing EDI concepts into their teaching, training, and supervision. The committee has provided training and resources to faculty and offers twice monthly office hours for faculty to discuss questions and concerns and receive support in incorporating EDI concepts into their teaching and supervision. In addition, the subcommittee has implemented a process whereby trainees are invited to provide anonymous feedback on didactic and Grand Rounds presentations to assist us in intentionally infusing EDI concepts into our training activities.
    • The Recruitment and Retention subcommittee is tasked with developing best practice strategies for recruiting and retaining a diverse work force at faculty, trainee and staff levels and is in the process of developing a document, based on existing resources provided through Tulane’s Office of Faculty Affairs, that aims to outline the steps for recruiting faculty using an equity lens. The committee has also worked with the training directors and administration to discuss how best to attract and retain individuals from diverse backgrounds as trainees and staff.
    • The Personal Growth subcommittee is tasked with identifying resources for continuous learning about history, especially as it relates to historical trauma, about racism and anti-racism, and multicultural dimensions of development, parenting and constructions of health and illness.
    • The Community Engagement and Outreach subcommittee works to develop and sustain relationships with community partners who share our goals and complement our resources. Tasks also include determining how to identify opportunities for faculty and trainee involvement in community activities.

The Steering Committee and all subcommittees are comprised of faculty, staff and trainees to ensure that all members of our department are represented and have a voice in the discussion as well as agency and involvement in decisions that are made.

Diversity Committee

EDI Strategic Planning Committee

EDI Officer

  • Film club
  • Book club
  • Advocacy, Consumerism & Community Engagement (ACCE)
  • Curriculum & Training
  • Recruitment & Retention
  • Personal Growth
  • Community Engagement & Outreach
  • Coordinates EDI initiatives
  • Reports on departmental
    EDI activities
  • Serves on SOM & University EDI committees



EDI Newsletter

Previous EDI newsletters:

March 2023

February 2023

January 2023

All 2022 EDI newsletters (February - December 2022)

 Looking for our Book Club and Film Club picks? Click here to see the list.