New Handbook Published by State Chancellor’s Office Highlights Best Practices to Promote Diversity in Hiring

On November 22, 2016, the State Chancellor's Office for California Community Colleges and the Statewide EEO and Diversity Advisory Committee published a new EEO and Diversity Best Practices Handbook.  This Handbook provides examples of community colleges which have implemented each of the nine “multiple methods” of promoting Equal Employment Opportunity (“EEO”).  The full Handbook containing additional best practice examples and links to training presented by the California Community Colleges Chancellor's Office can be found here.  Following is a summary of some of the noteworthy examples from the Handbook:

Establishing an EEO Advisory Committee and Creating an EEO Plan

Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District established an Equal Employment Opportunity Advisory Committee to advise the EEO Officer and the District.  It also created a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Council to promote diversity and multiculturalism.  Los Angeles Community College District formed an Equal Employment Opportunity Advisory Committee with members including representatives from all of the applicable unions, the academic senate, the human resources department, and the student body.

Adopting Board Policies & Resolutions

Los Rios Community College District requires its Equity Representative to receive training by the campus Equal Employment Officer every two years in addition to the Equity training required of all of the hiring committee members.  Ohlone Community College District’s motto is “A World of Culture United in Learning,” and its vision is “Ohlone College will be known throughout California for our inclusiveness, innovation, and exceptional student success.”  The San Joaquin-Delta Community College District requires that all employees take an EEO/Diversity training course through Keenan Safe Colleges.

Incentives for Hard-to-Hire Areas and Disciplines

Hartnell Community College District and Lake Tahoe Community College District both allow applicants to conduct their initial interviews via Skype and provide travel stipends for second interviews.  Ohlone Community College District holds open houses in the Nursing Department, including tours of the nursing labs and testimonials from full-time and part-time nursing faculty, and encouraged the graduates of its Interpreter Preparation Program to return to teach in the program.

Focused Outreach and Publications

North Orange Community College District holds “Hire Me” trainings that provide applicants with tips and techniques to be successful candidates.  San Mateo Community College District updated all of its job descriptions over the past two years to remove unnecessary minimum requirements to expand the breadth and depth of the applicant pool.

Procedures for Addressing Diversity throughout Hiring Steps and Levels

Hartnell Community College District utilizes an applicant tracking system to determine whether any steps in their hiring process had a disparate impact on certain groups.  It also uses a recruitment specialist to determine whether the applicant pool was qualified and diverse enough before proceeding with the selection process.  Long Beach Community College District created a Student, Institutional, and Faculty Profile to inform applicants of its diverse student population and to develop interview questions to weed out applicants who would do not show sensitivity to the diverse socioeconomic, cultural, disability, and ethnic backgrounds of its students.  West Valley-Mission Community College District created formal procedures to reduce the risk of harmful bias, including selecting a diverse search committee and interview questions touching on diversity.

Consistent and Ongoing Training for Hiring Committees

Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District developed Hiring Innovative Recruits Effectively (HIRE) training to better help participants understand the neuroscience of bias and to use the Pause, Clarify, Decide (PCD) method of eliminating bias.  Sierra Community College District provides a four-hour EEO training, including the topics of basic assumptions or impressions and a description of unconscious bias.

Professional Development Focused on Diversity

Long Beach Community College District held a spring flex day with breakout sessions focused on veterans, equity, multicultural cohorts, Umoja scholars, and syllabi.  It also provided a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Certificate Program covering “Differing Abilities, Ethnicity, and Culture, Privilege, Sexism/Heterosexism, and Ageism, Socioeconomics and Veterans.”  Los Rios Community College District offered workshops to increase cultural competency and understanding of diversity.  Santa Clarita Community College District offered 66 different professional development programs on diversity per year.

Diversity Incorporated into Criteria for Employee Evaluation and Tenure Review

Los Rios Community College District reviews faculty members on whether they adjusted their methodologies for student special needs or different learning styles.  It evaluates managers and supervisors on whether they demonstrated a commitment to diversity of both staff and students.  Pasadena Community College District’s faculty evaluation forms include the evaluation of whether instructors are sensitive to students of diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds, gender and sexual orientations, and various disabilities.  Southwestern Community College District evaluates their faculty on how sensitive they are to the “role of cultural factors in education” and “attention to the diverse education backgrounds” of their students.

Grow-Your-Own Programs

Los Angeles Community College District ran Project MATCH, which selected 50 interns to increase the quality of instruction and diversity of faculty in the District.  At the Long Beach Community College District’s Improve Your Marketability Seminar, the Vice-President of Human Resources presented on how a diverse workforce would benefit student achievement.  Santa Clarita Community College District developed a number of mentorship opportunities for its employees.

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