Results in for campus-wide diversity climate survey 

The results are in from last year’s campus-wide diversity climate survey at Pittsburg State University. 

“It confirmed what we knew — that just like a home might have, there are a few cracks in the foundation, and we need to seal them up so that it continues to stand strong,” said Deatrea Rose, assistant vice president for Student Life and the university’s senior diversity officer. 

What comes next, she said, will be online diversity training for faculty and staff. 

To administer the survey, the university contracted with Viewfinder Campus Climate Surveys, LLC. The university has contracted with Everfi to offer the training.    

“Understanding our campus diversity and inclusion climate with this study was an important step toward ensuring the university is both successful and a welcoming place to learn and work, said President Steve Scott. “What comes next is equally important: using these results as a springboard to become more aware as individuals and as an institution.”  

Responses to the survey were anonymous, with no personal identifying information collected from those who completed the survey.  


Of the 6,400 students enrolled at Pittsburg State at the time of the survey, 28.5 percent responded. Of the 896 faculty, staff, and administration employed at the time of the survey, 65.5 percent responded. Rose was pleased with that response rate, which when averaged was 33.1 percent. 

Survey results of students show that there are areas of diversity and inclusion in which the university can be proud. For example, 75 percent of students surveyed feel they can openly express their political views and world views in the surrounding community, 71 percent feel they can openly express their sexual identity and orientation, and 75 percent of those who are a person of color feel welcome. 

Survey results of employees show some similar percentages; for example, with regard to expressing political and world views, 69 percent of faculty, 62 percent of staff, and 63 percent of administration feel they can openly express them.  

With regard to diverse employees, 60 percent of faculty feel they have received adequate diversity training to engage with students and other employees on campus, and 54 percent reported that their department/division/unit has pipeline programs to attract diverse employees. Survey results of staff show that 55 percent have pipeline programs, and administration reported 50 percent. 

Administration results show that 58 percent believe they need more education and resources regarding minority groups and diversity in order to be more effective at work. 


“On the one hand, it’s great that such a high percentage of students and employees feel they can openly express themselves, whether it’s with regard to politics, religion, or sexual identity, and that such a high percentage of persons of color feel welcome,” Rose said. “But we can’t discount the 25 percent or so of those who don’t — those feelings are valid and important and show we have a bit of work to do.” 

“And, if 58 percent of administration are asking for more education and resources regarding diversity, we want to give that to them,” she said. 

To that end, employees will be invited by email to voluntarily participate in a virtual diversity workshop to be launched this fall; many members of the university’s new Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Council have completed it as have about half of freshmen students as a pilot group. 

The workshop consists of one module that is scenario based, and it can be taken at an individual’s own pace as they have time to work through it. Rose estimated it takes between 15 and 20 minutes to complete. She hopes to offer additional modules in coming years. 

Additional recommendations by the council include a variety of strategies that Rose said will be rolled out to the campus in coming months: 

• Employees and students will be invited to participate in brown bag lunches to discuss diversity issues. 

• The Office of Student Diversity will partner with Human Resource Services to ensure that diversity, equity, and inclusion are considered in how we advertise, and where we advertise, for vacant positions. 

• The Office of Student Diversity will partner with HRS to reimagine the Basic Supervisory Training Program. 

• The Office of Student Diversity will ask to be a part of the faculty workshops facilitated by the university’s Center for Teaching and Learning Technology. 

The Office of Student Diversity will continue to provide departmental diversity workshops/trainings by request and has done so already this fall with employees from University Advancement. 

Deatrea’s training was very eye opening,” said Becky McDaniel, executive director of Development. “Becoming aware and having a deeper understanding of our current culture is so important to our work and who we serve, but above all else, it's important to being a good human. We should always be working to understand the perspectives of our students, each other, and our alumni.”