Division of Diversity and Community Engagement
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Change Starts Here: You Belong Here

Change Starts Here: You Belong Here


Build a more diverse talented community of students, staff and faculty

UT Austin’s campus is already a dynamic, diverse place. Our recent HSI and AANAPISI designations showcase just some of the diversity in our student population. And faculty and staff from across the world call UT Austin home. Yet we want to build on those successes across the campus to continue to cultivate UT Austin as a place where culturally diverse communities of backgrounds, ideas, opinions and experiences are welcome.

To achieve that, we need to ensure that we reach out broadly to communities within Texas and across the world to identify the highest potential students, staff and scholars. We also recognize the need to offer continuing support to our students when they arrive on campus, and to eliminate the barriers to attract and retain students from historically excluded and underrepresented communities. We need to ensure that we recruit diverse applicant pools, which will increase our overall diversity in hiring, and that we improve our retention of the staff who support and serve our students, faculty and our leadership, by developing robust outreach networks and ensuring equitable pay and promotion opportunities. Similarly, we must increase our outreach and resources to attract and retain faculty who can bring innovative, high-impact ideas to our campus.

How we will accomplish our objectives:

1.1 Address and overcome the barriers to attract and retain undergraduate and graduate students from historically excluded and underserved communities

Our mission starts with our students. It’s our culturally diverse, dynamic and committed student body that makes UT Austin one of the great public universities. To meet our mission, we need to make sure that best and brightest students from all across Texas, including those from historically underserved communities, apply here. And, once they are here, we need to make sure they have the support to succeed and graduate.

  • Make intentional efforts to expand recruitment pathways to increase the diversity of students interested in UT Austin
  • Connect students with the financial assistance opportunities that are available to them
  • Develop programs available to all that are relevant to and that meet the needs of historically excluded and underserved student populations
  • Expand and deepen the pre-college academic readiness pipeline to our university

1.2 Enhance recruitment and hiring strategies that promote equity, inclusion and belonging for all members of our community

We believe that we can best serve the state of Texas when our students, staff and faculty showcase the cultural diversity of Texas. We can highlight our achievements by ensuring a consistent and integrated approach to hiring staff and faculty and admitting students. We should also work to understand the areas where we fall behind. As the flagship university of the state of Texas, we should be a competitive choice for the best minds in the state, no matter where they come from.

  • Attract and maintain a diverse staff and faculty community to cultivate inclusivity and diversity at all levels of the university including leadership
  • Research root causes for lower Black representation at the undergraduate and graduate level and work on ways to improve through connecting with high schools and Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs)
  • Review and expand undergraduate and graduate admissions materials to be inclusive to communities served by the university

1.3 Recruit, develop and retain diverse staff talent

While the city of Austin is a competitive environment for employment, UT Austin offers an incredible professional opportunity for staff: the chance to work closely with some of the most outstanding minds in the world on a dynamic campus dedicated to serving our communities through education and research. As the backbone of our institution, we need to ensure that staff are aware of and have equitable access to those opportunities, and that we listen to their voices and meet their needs in order to demonstrate the value of working on our campus.

  • Develop robust new outreach networks, extend existing networks and ensure equitable pay and promotion opportunities to attract, recruit, and retain staff
  • Dedicate resources for a permanent, full-time staff equity program that manages ongoing assessments for equal pay.
  • Expand onboarding, access to learning and development opportunities, rewards and recognition, and exit surveys.
  • Review trends in turnover rates in particular communities and produce public reports on hiring, representation and equity

1.4 Recruit, develop and retain diverse faculty talent

To maintain our position as a leading university, we must continue to recruit and invest in a world-class faculty and support them as they offer a diversity of experiences, identities and opinions to our students.

  • Increase our outreach and expand our resources to attract and retain faculty who bring innovative, high-impact ideas to our campus
  • Develop mechanisms for valuing faculty contributions to diversity, equity and inclusion work in their units and the larger campus community