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Official Reports on Ohio State Diversity Issues

  1. Ohio State's Diversity Action Plan
  2. Affirmative Action Committee Report, Fall 2000
  3. Ohio State's Academic Plan
  4. Council on Diversity's Report 2000-2001

The Ohio State University Diversity Updates

Diversity Update - Winter 2003
(Prepared By The Office Of University Relations)

Special Message:

In her remarks at the February 7, 2003 meeting of the University Board of Trustees, President Karen A. Holbrook spoke about the importance of diversity to Ohio State. “Diversity is a value, and for Ohio State, achieving diversity among our population of students, faculty and staff is a goal. It is about fairness and justice to provide access to education for all citizens, and it is essential to prepare for life in the working world, for good citizenship, and for political leadership.” She discussed the connection between diversity and excellence in education: “Diversity adds to the learning experience, expands classroom examples, and improves communication, understanding, and sharing of different life experiences. Diversity brings to light the fact that there are differences among people of different races and among people of the same race — individuals cannot be stereotyped. Diversity fosters intellectual and social growth and forces students to change their assumptions and to learn.” She continued: “Many students and faculty want to know the position of The Ohio State University in this situation, and thus I want to reaffirm and to state unequivocally that this institution is committed to promoting and supporting the diversity of our community.”

Faculty/Staff Recruitment and Retention

1. The School of Journalism and Communications hired Osei Appiah as an assistant professor who will teach courses on advertising and society and strategic communications. Appiah’s main research interests are in advertising effects on ethnic minorities, and media effects on children and adolescents. His professional experience includes market research at Yankelovich Partners, product marketing and customer research at Apple Computer, and sports marketing at Nike. He has also worked as a professor-in-residence and a multicultural media consultant for Ogilvy & Mather advertising agency in New York. Appiah holds a B.A. in communication from Santa Clara University, an M.S. in communication from Cornell University, and a Ph.D. in communication from Stanford University.

2. Henry Fischbach was recently elected chair of the Hispanic Oversight Committee (HOC), which seeks to improve the recruitment and retention of students, faculty, and staff, and to create a supportive environment for the students’ intellectual and professional development. Fischbach, who received his undergraduate degree from the University of Puerto Rico Mayaguez, attended Ohio State’s College of Dentistry. He graduated in 1986 and spent the next several years in private practice. In 1996, he returned to the university and is now an associate professor of clinical dentistry. In addition to chairing the HOC, Fischbach is a member of the university’s Council on Diversity as well as the advisory board for the Office of Minority Affairs.

3. john a. powell arrived at Ohio State as director of the new Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in the Americas and also the Gregory H. Williams Chair in Civil Rights and Civil Liberties in the Moritz College of Law. Ohio State’s new institute is a key component of the university’s Academic Plan and is being established to position Ohio State as an international research leader in the interdisciplinary field of race and ethnicity studies. Previously, powell taught civil rights law, property law, and jurisprudence at the University of Minnesota, where he also founded the Institute of Race and Poverty.

4. The College of Engineering welcomed Katharine M. Flores as a new faculty member in materials science and engineering. Flores recently completed her Ph.D. in materials science and engineering at Stanford University, where she was director of the Sports Materials Laboratory. She is most interested in the microstructure and mechanical properties, and her research centers on the mechanical behavior and reliability of a variety of materials.

Student Recruitment and Retention

1. The Office of Minority Affairs (OMA) hosted its 32nd annual Graduate and Professional Schools Visitation Days program with the goal of attracting some of the nation’s top seniors and graduate students to Ohio State. The two-day event provided students with an overview of entrance and application requirements, curriculum plans, research opportunities, career counseling and financial aid, as well as student services such as housing and parking. More than 200 students attended the autumn event, with more than half of those representing historically black colleges and universities. OMA also sponsored its 30th annual Career and Job Fair in January. This two-day event brought more than 100 companies to campus to interview students for part-time, summer, or permanent employment. The fair allowed students and employers to become acquainted with each other on the first day, and then to schedule interviews for the next.

2. Yolanda Zepeda was hired as the Graduate School’s director of enrichment programs, a newly created position, to improve diversity in Ohio State’s colleges and to support the career growth of graduate and professional students - two recommendations in the Graduate Quality of University Experience (G-QUE) report. Zepeda will be responsible for enhancing the environment for underrepresented students in the Graduate School. Developing workshops supportive of minority groups and helping departments be more responsive to student needs are activities she will begin immediately. She also intends to work with departments to create recruitment strategies to expand diversity efforts. Prior to her arrival at Ohio State, Zepeda served as the assistant director for multicultural and international affairs for the Committee on Institutional Cooperation (CIC).

3. Karen Fasheun was hired to serve as program coordinator for retention and campus diversity at Ohio State’s Marion campus. Fasheun will develop retention programs and services that enhance student learning and personal development, and will also coordinate Marion campus diversity initiatives. She will be working collaboratively with academic advising, admissions, faculty and staff, financial aid, career services, campus activities and organizations, as well as several local organizations. Fasheun was previously employed by Ohio Wesleyan University, where she served as associate dean of admissions and director of multicultural enrollment.

4. The Jerome Schottenstein Center (JCS) has recently embarked on a mentorship program with local minority high school students. The students spend time learning about facility and event management as a career option. In addition, the JCS Internship Program has announced that Cortez Smith is the David Williams II Facility Management intern for the 2002-2003 season. The internship position will enable Smith to complete his degree requirements for a bachelor of science degree in sport management, marketing and promotion from Winston-Salem State University.

5. The Multicultural Center has launched a new program titled “New Diversity Initiatives,” with the intention of creating a network of resources and also to be a supportive force in Ohio State’s plan for diversity. Activities for the first year include investigations of requests for student support services and of the current services and programs provided. Additional efforts during the first year will be focused on developing a strategic plan.

Academic Programs

1. The Service Learning Initiative has launched a new website module to create awareness and develop greater comfort with diversity. The Diversity Connection is an online training module designed to prepare students for community service as a volunteer or in service-learning courses. Students who will be providing service are urged to use this module to create awareness and develop greater comfort with diversity. The module was developed with input from more than 20 experts in multicultural issues and neighborhood outreach from Ohio State and the local community. It invites faculty, staff, and students to think about their own cultural heritage, review a demographic quiz, and reflect on the importance of respect as they approach community work.

2. The Multicultural Center has formed the OSU/Nationwide Diversity Leadership Transcript Program (DLTP), a voluntary program for any undergraduate student interested in enhancing his or her Ohio State experience with a concentration on diversity and leadership in the classroom and through co-curricular involvement. The Diversity Leadership Transcript charts a student’s personal growth, which might provide a competitive edge when applying for graduate or professional schools and when seeking employment. Through involvement with the program, students will acquire knowledge, skills, and values necessary for effective diversity leadership on campus, in society, and in the global workplace.


1. The Ohio State University was selected as one of the country’s 50 best colleges for African Americans by Black Enterprise magazine, appearing for the first time in the annual ranking at No. 45. Data was compiled from 482 accredited four-year historically black or public institutions and categorized according to the college classification protocol developed by U.S. News and World Report. Nearly 1,900 African American professionals in higher education responded to a questionnaire examining the academic standing and social environment of each school. Ohio State, which marked a record enrollment of 3,941 African American students this fall, is the largest and one of 14 public institutions recognized.

2. The Council for Advancement and Support of Education District V presented its Outstanding Commitment to Professional Development Award to Jeri Kozobarich, director of advancement for the College of Education. The award recognizes her efforts to enhance the professional development and career opportunities for minorities in the advancement field. In two decades at Ohio State, Kozobarich has taken on the role of mentor to women and people of color at the university and nationwide, and has also raised questions that led to more equitable working conditions for women in development. She is now a member of the University Committee on the Recruitment and Retention of Women and Minority Faculty and Staff.

3. Fisher College of Business undergraduate student Elicia Wyman received the Tavis Smiley Foundation “Salute to Youth Leadership” Emerging Leader Award. The award recognizes students who display activism and leadership at their university and in their community. The Tavis Smiley Foundation is an organization that strives to enlighten, encourage, and empower youth through the development of leadership skills. Wyman is also a Glenna Joyce Scholarship recipient, one of the most prestigious merit-based awards offered by the university.


1. The Association of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Faculty and Staff hosted Kate Anderson, executive director of Stonewall Columbus, at an Ohio State luncheon. Since taking charge of the group last February, Anderson has led one of the country’s largest pride celebrations and formed a political arm called Stonewall Community Action Network. Anderson discussed Stonewall’s new direction and how it plans to play a more active role in the city’s politics, education, and development.

2. The President and Provost’s Diversity Lecture Series featured three speakers during January. Alan Wolf, professor of political science at Boston College, spoke on the topic of faith and diversity in American religion. Patti Wilson Byars, author of “Separate Fountains,” talked about her book as well as experiences from her life growing up in a segregated community. And Dr. Mervyn Warren spoke about his nearly three decades of research on the life, preaching, and influence of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Additionally, the Hale Center hosted U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters of California as its annual Martin Luther King Day speaker. Rep. Waters, considered by many to be one of the most prominent women in American politics today, confirmed through her lecture why she is considered to be a fearless and outspoken advocate for women, children, people of color, and the poor.

3. Kenneth W. Goings, chair of the Department of African American and African Studies, was a consultant for, and appeared in, the PBS documentary film “The Rise and Fall of Jim Crow,” which was produced primarily for college audiences. The documentary covers race relations in the United States from the Civil War to the modern phase of the Civil Rights Movement, and is divided into four parts. Goings was a consultant for all four episodes, and appears in the first two — Promises Betrayed (1885-1896) and Fighting Back. Part One reviews the failures of Reconstruction, and the segregation and disenfranchisement of African Americans. The second episode examines the role of the African American middle class and the organizations they help sponsor, such as the NAACP. The third part is subtitled Don’t Shout Too Soon, and examines the racial violence after World War I, including the growing role of the NAACP, the Communist Party, and the Socialists in defending African Americans during the 1930s. The final episode is subtitled Terror and Triumph, and focuses on the increasing activism that gained momentum after World War II.

4. The Fisher College of Business has produced a diversity training video designed to bring business-world diversity issues into the academic classroom and corporate development center. The video provides a first-person perspective on navigating through the corporate arena as a person of color. The video presents diversity issues by a panel of successful, diverse corporate leaders, who share their personal experiences on topics such as breaking through the glass ceiling, dealing with personal biases, and adapting a personal style to succeed in corporate culture.

5. The Fisher College also presented an executive marketing management seminar to help corporate leaders more effectively market their products to gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered (GLBT) customers. The seminar was developed to help corporate decision makers better understand GLBT issues so that they can market effectively to GLBT customers. Presentations included an overview of the GLBT market, including demographics and marketing opportunities and challenges; myths about GLBT issues and the workplace; workplace equity as a strategic business advantage; and preparing the sales force to serve the GLBT market.

The Ohio State University Diversity Updates

Winter 2003 | Spring 2003 (PDF) | Summer 2003 (PDF) | Autumn 2003 (PDF)

Winter 2002 | Spring 2002 | Summer 2002 | Autumn 2002

Autumn 2001

Autumn 2000

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