A statement on community well-being, diversity, and inclusion
The fields of architecture, city planning, media, design, real estate, and art are first and foremost dedicated to improving the human condition and quality of life for all people. This credo applies in all the varied communities in which we are engaged, including our own here at MIT. We value each member of our community—students, faculty, postdocs, staff, and visitors—as human beings, with all our wonderful differences. These differences in culture, life experience, and opinion fuel creative ideas and actions, which are the core of our School’s educational mission.
We have therefore taken steps over the past decade to create a diverse and inclusive community within the School and its various departments, centers, and laboratories. SA+P maintains a standing Diversity Committee that reviews all faculty hires to see that underrepresented minorities (URM) and women receive equal opportunities to become a part of SA+P. Individual units of the School have instituted their own procedures to meet this goal, and we have hired two staff members dedicated to diversity recruitment and inclusion activities.
We fully support the 2004 MIT goal of doubling the percentage of underrepresented minority faculty, and tripling the percentage of underrepresented minority graduate students. Over the past decade we have made significant progress in this direction. With regard to URM faculty, SA+P tripled the number from 3 percent in 2004 to 9 percent in 2014, exceeding the goal. In URM student admissions, SA+P increased the number from 7 percent in 2004 to 11 percent in 2014, which is short of the goal. Consequently, we are redoubling our efforts to attract URM applicants and to increase the number of students who choose to attend MIT after they are admitted. Critical to this is our dedication to the physical and emotional well-being of every member of the SA+P community, and to promoting an environment of equity, mutual respect, caring, and support for each other.
Hashim Sarkis, Dean, School of Architecture and Planning