Inclusive Excellence | Salem State University Skip to main content

Vision Statement

One of the hallmarks of a great university is its genuine commitment to excellence in research, teaching and service to the community. An Inclusive Excellence university excels in these areas, but also values and practices inclusiveness, social justice and equity as values that are embedded into the heart and soul of the institution.

The concept of Inclusive Excellence (articulated and endorsed by the Association of American Colleges and Universities) moves a university away from a simplistic definition of diversity to a more inclusive, comprehensive, and omnipresent notion of inclusiveness; melds inclusiveness and academic excellence into one concept (to practice inclusiveness is excellence); shifts the responsibility for diversity and inclusiveness to everyone on campus as opposed to one unit or department shouldering the responsibility; and moves an institution away from conceptualizing diversity only in terms of a numerical goal of diverse constituents.

The focus becomes the transformation of a university into a vibrant community that embeds diversity and inclusiveness throughout the institution, including (but not limited to) demographics (numbers), curriculum, policies, enrollment, pedagogy, financial resources, diverse student learning outcomes, leadership, training, retention, student learning, marketing, technology, teaching, student advising, campus climate communications, administration, recruitment, hiring and promotion and tenure, assessment, institutional advancement, and evaluation. Inclusive Excellence employs a broad and inclusive definition of diversity that includes (but is not limited to) disability, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, social class,  language, age, religion, disability, race/ethnicity, nationality, veteran status, and other important social dimensions that are part of the campus community.

In sum, for the purpose of addressing inclusiveness at Salem State University, “Inclusive Excellence is defined as a strategy for transforming Salem State into an institution that conceptualizes inclusiveness and excellence as one in the same, makes inclusiveness ubiquitous, assigns responsibility for inclusiveness to everyone on campus, and utilizes a broad definition of inclusiveness.”

The Model for Inclusive Excellence

  • Philosophy and Mission

    • Definitions understood
    • Strategic plan alignment
    • Mission alignment
    • Education reforms alignment
    • Accreditation
    • Historical and geographical context
  • Faculty Support

    • Faculty knowledge and awareness
    • Faculty involvement and support
    • Faculty development and incentives
    • Academic departments
    • Faculty leadership
    • Faculty rewards
  • Curriculum

    • Knowledge and awareness in relation to different disciplines
    • Faculty teaching and learning strategies/methods
    • Student learning outcomes and assessment
  • Staff Support

    • Knowledge and awareness
    • Engagement and involvement
    • Incentives and rewards
    • Non-academic units
  • Student Support

    • Knowledge and awareness
    • Opportunities
    • Involvement and engagement
    • Leadership
    • Incentives and rewards
  • Administrative Leadership

    • Policies
    • Coordination
    • Commitment and participation
    • Hiring and retention
    • Diversity-focused positions
    • Professional development
    • Institutional research
    • Resource management

HEED Award

INSIGHT Into Diversity HEED Award graphic

Salem State has been selected as a recipient of the prestigious 2017 INSIGHT Into Diversity Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) Award. This award is the only national recognition honoring colleges and universities that show an outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion across their campuses.

Campus Climate Study

A group of diverse Salem State students gather outside

Campus Climate Study

The campus climate study measures current attitudes, behaviors and standards and practices of our campus so we can improve the college environment.


Contact Us

Rebecca D. Comage
Interim Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer

Office Information

Administration Building, First Floor, Room 6, North Campus


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