All In Lion Shrine
All In Lion Shrine
Image: Penn State

University’s ongoing diversity and inclusion initiative to kick-off Oct. 6

‘All In at Penn State’ aims to foster open-minded community, respectful discussions

MIDDLETOWN, Pa. —Penn State will kick off its ongoing University-wide initiative that brings students, faculty and staff together to show their commitment to cultivating a diverse and inclusive environment — respectful of everyone regardless of race, ethnicity, religion, age, sexual orientation, abilities, background, veteran’s status, political beliefs, and all the ways we differ.

“All In at Penn State: A Commitment to Diversity and Inclusion” will begin with a public event on October 6 at 7:15 p.m. at Penn State University Park, which will be livestreamed (allin.psu.edu/kickoffevent) to all Penn State campuses so that students, faculty and staff can participate and be “All In at Penn State” regardless of where they are located.

The event will include remarks from President Eric Barron and Vice Provost for Educational Equity Marcus Whitehurst, along with music from the Essence of Joy choir; remarks by faculty member Susan Russell and undergraduate student Jin Brooke; and the announcement of a new “All In” Achievement Award to recognize a Penn State student, faculty or staff member who has made a significant contribution to the yearlong celebration and whose life and work embody diversity, inclusion and equity in all of its forms.

The Penn State Harrisburg community is encouraged to view the livestream and share their thoughts on social media throughout the year, using the hashtag #WeAre.  The event itself will be featured on the University’s social media platforms, including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and there will be an official Snapchat geofilter available on the Old Main lawn the evening of the event.

The video will also be viewed during Penn State Harrisburg’s Diversity and Educational Equity Committee (DEEC) open house and lunch on October 20, from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Swatara Building conference room. 

“Diversity and inclusion are part of the fabric of who we are as a University,” Barron said. “This initiative is encouraging all members of the community to reflect on that and ‘Be who you are. Together.’ By learning from and celebrating what each of us brings to the community we will be a stronger University. I know that I learn from students, faculty and staff every day, by hearing their ideas and gaining insights from their perspectives.”

Barron said the “All In” initiative had its start in listening to students about the need to continue to build supportive, welcoming learning environments that make all of our students, faculty and staff feel a part of Penn State.

“Penn State Harrisburg has always been committed to diversity and inclusion.  Every semester, we have events to highlight the broad range of ethnicities and cultures of our community and we take every opportunity to celebrate our truly global, diverse campus,” said Penn State Harrisburg Chancellor Mukund Kulkarni.  “The “All In” initiative is another way to foster dialogue and create learning opportunities about diversity and inclusion.  I look forward to the college community’s participation.”

Penn State Harrisburg will hold a number of events throughout the year that highlight diversity and inclusion.  Visit the DEEC calendar at https://harrisburg.psu.edu/diversity-and-educational-equity-committee to view all upcoming events.

Penn State is also launching a microsite, allin.psu.edu on October 6. Along with a video highlighting the challenges students face, the microsite includes questions to foster discussions going forward and a list of facilitators who will be available to lead conversations among students, faculty and staff across the University.

The initiative also includes the announcement next spring of the creation of a permanent “All In at Penn State” tribute to diversity and inclusion — a physical reminder of the significance of both diversity and inclusion.

The University will hold events throughout the year, including National Coming Out Week October 10 through 14; a First Amendment panel discussion October 27 in the HUB-Robeson Center on the University Park campus; Military Appreciation Week November 4 through 13; Black History Month in February; and more. The “All In” calendar is available online at: http://equity.psu.edu/allin-calendar.