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Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Tip Sheet

Equity is the ability for diverse and racialized students, faculty and professional staff to participate in classrooms and workspaces. Inclusion is the goal for all three stakeholders to have equivalent experiences while learning and working at the college. Therefore, it is CNHP's responsibility to create spaces where everyone feels safe to express themselves and their views and to make adaptations, accommodations or corrections where necessary. Academia is an environment to learn and grow without psychological or emotional harm or damage.

To that end, the assistant dean of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion created this tip sheet for faculty to assist in navigating diversity and inclusion check-ins, curriculum conversations and questions in the classroom toward the goal of inclusion for all students.

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Everyone's voice and what is shared are respected, confidential and honored. Use "I" statements and speak from your own experience to avoid generalizing and speaking for another group or individual. Resist the desire to interrupt, be honest and avoid critiquing others’ comments. Assume everyone has good intentions, but acknowledge when you say something, even if not intended, that is hurtful to someone else.

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The overarching achievement of structural and institutional changes comes from attention to health equity and reduction of disparities in health outcomes. As health and service professionals who drive this transformation, we should develop individual strategies for identifying and understanding our own unconscious biases and the impact it, unintentional or otherwise, has on how we instruct in the delivery of care. Unconscious biases are not permanent. In fact, they are malleable, and steps can be taken to limit their impact on our thoughts and behaviors (Dasgupta, 2013).

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Being comfortable with discomfort creates conditions for learning both in the classroom and in the world. It is important to set the expectation that the entire class or independent conversations are predicated upon active participation for conducting critical discourse and reflection. No one person needs to feel responsible for holding the space including faculty (Sokolava, 2016).


By silencing someone who is expressing their emotional truth about oppression, you are demonstrating that their pain and anger are not as important as your personal comfort. This tactic allows people who hold privilege to define what an acceptable and reasonable discussion or conversation about oppression is and it has real psychological consequences. It suppresses the voices and invalidates the experiences of marginalized individuals telling them that they don’t matter.

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It is up to all of us, faculty, students and professional staff alike, to systemically evaluate and review curriculum and our environments for disparities and to continually strive to improve class and work performance resulting in closing the gaps in health disparity and inequity (Harbin, Thurber & Bandy, 2019).

RESOURCES: Tone Policing; Inclusive Workplace; Evaluation of the Workplace
RECOMMENDED READING: Classroom Principles
PROVIDED BY: Veronica Carey, PhD • Assistant Dean for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and CNHP’s Board of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion