Increase Investment in Programming and Infrastructure Supporting Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

Inclusion Begins with Me Campaign

This two-level campaign was designed to encourage faculty and staff to intentionally “get to know” faculty and staff outside of their usual social and work networks.

virtual coffee and conversation flyerLevel I consisted of creating a time of sharing with at least two faculty members and two staff members, carrying out an act promoting a sense of belonging similar to an act of kindness, and participating in a social justice development project over a 6-month period.

Level II encourages faculty and staff to implement an innovative project enhancing social justice over a 12-month period. To date, this activity has promoted collegial relationships throughout VUSN and promoted a sense of camaraderie among 63 VUSN faculty and staff members. Incentives such as a “making a difference” lapel pen, lanyards and paperweights were assigned to each level of participation. 

Diversity Month

One of most impactful VUSN EDI activities is Diversity Month, with Diversity Day always a highlight. Students select cultures of their choice and have a scholarly poster day for faculty, staff and students. This event is co-sponsored by the Black Student Nurses Affinity Group with Sigma Theta Tau, Iota Chapter Nursing Honor Society. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Diversity Day was not held in 2021; Diversity Month, however, was transferred to virtual. Each diversity student affinity group selected a day to sponsor a lecture, panel or activity on a topic of their choice related to EDI. These events have been very informative in that these are topics or issues that students decided should be addressed within VUSN. The following sessions were held in February and March of 2021.

Diversity Month Speaker Series

  • “Beyond the Presidency: The Role of Nurses in the Continued Work of Anti-Racism” with Douglas Allen, PhD, Assistant Professor of Geography, Department of Social Sciences, Emporia State University; sponsored by the Alliance Against Racism Student Organization
  • “Navigating Implicit Biases Against Asian Americans During COVID-19” with Asian American/Pacific Islander Student Nurses Affinity Group
  • “VUSN Pride Shares: A Secret Only God Knows with Tom Christenbery, PhD, RN, CNE, Professor of Nursing, Vanderbilt University
  • “The skin you are in: Decolonizing Dermatology” with Aleta N. Simmons, MD, Professor of Dermatology, Vanderbilt University Medical Center; sponsored by Black Student Nurses Affinity Group
  • “The Power of Diversity in Nursing and Initiatives to Increase Diversity and Inclusion” a panel discussion sponsored by Doctorate of Nursing Practice Diversity Affinity Group
  • “High Stakes: The military and its impact on the family unit” with LTC Ossie Evans, LCSW, Deputy Installation Director of Psychological Health, Ft. Campbell; sponsored by the Veterans and Military Student Affinity Group
  • “Breaking Down Barriers in Communication” with Hispanic/Latinx Student Nurses Affinity Group

VUSN Alumni Speaker Series

Mental Health and Black America Today: Where are we? a panel discussion sponsored by VUSN Alumni Association

Mental health and black america today: where are we?

The Evolving Role of Nursing in Transgender Care sponsored by the VUSN Alumni Association

The Evolving Role of Nursing in Transgender Care