At the College of Staten Island (CSI), we seek to create an environment characterized by openness, fairness, and equal access for all students, staff, and faculty. A welcoming and inclusive campus climate is grounded in mutual respect, nurtured by dialogue, evidenced by a pattern of civil interaction, and is one of the foundations of our educational model. Creating and maintaining a community environment that respects individual needs, abilities, and potential is critically important.

During the 2015–2016 academic year, CSI will undertake a vital and relevant climate assessment. This is our chance to make a difference in CSI’s future—our opportunity to make positive, lasting changes and to help create a more inclusive campus. To ensure full transparency and to provide a more complete perspective, we have contracted Rankin & Associates to help lead this effort. Dr. Rankin has conducted more than130 campus climate assessment projects in her more than 36 years in the academy.

A team from Rankin & Associates will be coming to campus on November 9, 2015 to speak with small groups of faculty, staff, and students about how they experience the environment for living, learning, and working at CSI. These small group conversations will lead to a survey in which all CSI community members will be asked to participate next semester.

This project will better enable us to both develop programs and policies that will increase inclusivity in areas that are shown to be problematic, and enhance and replicate programs and policies in areas that are shown to be successfully meeting the needs of the community. Rankin & Associates has been working with a committee of students, staff, and faculty from CSI to develop and populate the focus groups.

Please take a moment to review the climate survey Website. As the project moves ahead, the site will be updated to reflect the project’s progress and results.

Thank you for joining me in support of this important initiative that is designed to create a better CSI for all of us.