Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Access

Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Access
Thompson Hall with the sun

UNH Land, Water and Life Acknowledgement

As we all journey on the trail of life, we wish to acknowledge the spiritual and physical connection the Pennacook, Abenaki and Wabanaki Peoples have maintained to N’dakinna (homeland) and the aki (land), nebi (water), olakwika (flora) and awaasak (fauna) that the University of New Hampshire community is honored to steward today. We also acknowledge the hardships they continue to endure after the loss of unceded homelands and champion the university’s responsibility to foster relationships and opportunities that strengthen the well-being of the Indigenous People who carry forward the traditions of their ancestors.


A Message from Dean Anthony S. Davis

Inclusion, diversity, equity and access are core values of our COLSA community. Together, we are all strengthening the college’s commitment to being an inclusive place of work and study. Our efforts are a key part of a broader movement to dismantle the societal practices, policies and unconscious biases that have reinforced centuries of white privilege and systemic racism.

I write this with acknowledgment of my privilege: I am white, male and college-educated. I have had the privilege to go to well-funded schools, shop in well-stocked stores, hike, bike, run, travel, go out day or night and do almost anything else without fear of being targeted because of my skin color. I also acknowledge that the scientific community and the academy as a whole have benefited from and reinforced a system that rewards white people more readily than Black people and other people of color.

In recognition of these indelible truths and building from a belief that with privilege comes the responsibility to create opportunity, I am excited to launch three initiatives aimed at empowering change and sustaining the commitment shown by so many of our students, staff, and faculty:

  1. The COLSA Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Access (IDEA) Committee: The IDEA committee will serve as a thought generator and promotor, sounding board, and liaison between me and all reaches of our COLSA community. The committee will be represented at our Executive Committee, first as an ad hoc committee, and then I will ask for your support in changing our bylaws to include it as a formal committee and institutionalized in COLSA. I will follow up in the coming weeks with the committee structure and process for electing members, with the intention of holding elections before the end of the semester.
  2. The Dean’s office and the IDEA committee will continue to support the COLSA anti-racist book share. The book share is part of the recognition that self-education and growth are core elements of the cultural change that we seek, and it is intended to provide us with more tools to embrace an anti-racist culture and deconstruct bias in academia and science.
  3. Monthly chats called Open IDEA Hour to discuss diversity, equity, and inclusion ideas and concepts that emerge in our teaching, work-life and research. This is a chance for faculty and staff to share ideas and best practices and seek advice from peers in response to situations that emerge. We will begin this virtually and reevaluate in the coming months to find the most effective format. 

These three things are just the start of institutionalizing a commitment to social justice and equity in our operations.

I am deeply committed to leading a college that is recognized for its commitment to being an equitable and inclusive place of work and study and its celebration of the diversity of our students, staff, and faculty. Through the uniqueness of our people and our shared passion for science, education, and humanity we can achieve greatness.

The IDEA Committee is made up of faculty representatives from each of the four departments in College of Life Sciences and Agriculture, a graduate student representative, an undergraduate student representative, and a staff representative. If you have any questions or feedback for the IDEA Committee, please email

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