The Narragansett Bay Campus Committee for Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (JEDI), first convened in March 2021, is a committee of members from across the institutions and functions of the Narragansett Bay Campus appointed by the Dean of the Graduate School of Oceanography and in partnership with our federal partners at EPA and NOAA. The Committee is a resource for the whole community to support, improve and raise awareness of JEDI-related issues on Campus. The Committee provides advice to the Dean of GSO on working and learning climate within GSO and with their interaction with other organizations co-located at the Narragansett Bay Campus.
This committee is committed to shared organizational values of respect, accountability, belonging and empathy in our work to achieve the following ideals for our campus:
Justice: Deconstruct systems and structures that perpetuate inequality, and replace them with systems that promote fairness, and opportunities for a diverse cultural campus climate thereby creating a diverse, inclusive, and equitable workplace for all, strengthening community and accountability. The removal of barriers to entry, retention, success, and advancement within the Bay Campus leading to inclusion for all and the promotion of community and accountability.
Equity: Equitable access to resource allocation specific to the needs, aspirations, strengths and challenges for all while providing access to tailored tools and resources each individual needs to succeed and achieve their goals.
Diversity: Embracing our uniqueness across race, ethnicity, cultures, beliefs, identities, diverse abilities, socioeconomic status and age with the knowledge that each uniqueness contributes to the growth and enrichment of our community. Fostering a welcoming environment that will attract and retain students, staff and faculty from diverse backgrounds and perspectives.
Inclusion: Ensure a systemic approach that embodies inclusivity in the creation and implementation of our projects, policies, procedures and programs, with the challenges and needs of all, while affirming their values and talents and contribution to these endeavors. Emphasis is placed on ensuring that every voice is represented and valued within a community that is safe and welcoming to all, where everyone feels respected, has a sense of belonging, and access to the resources needed to be successful.
The NBC JEDI Committee shall lead educational and community building activities for the Bay Campus, network with other relevant bodies at URI and more broadly, and shall offer advice to the GSO Dean and Assistant Dean for JEDI. The Narragansett Bay Campus JEDI Committee is advisory only and does not have an adjudicatory role in broader URI human resources, bias incidents, or affirmative action matters which may occur on the Narragansett Bay Campus but which are dealt with by other responsible bodies. Although the Committee cannot adjudicate these matters, it maintains helpful information and resources on its webpage.
This committee will enhance engagement within and outside our campus community through improving awareness of and resources for attracting and retaining a diverse group of people. We aim to develop an inclusive welcoming learning community where we all feel a sense of belonging and are celebrated for our commonalities and differences.
Goals and Objectives
In collaboration with the GSO/URI URGE Pod and other URI partners, the NBC JEDI committee has identified a series of action items to: (1) improve campus climate such that all experiences and voices are valued and heard; (2) enhance outreach efforts and partnerships to promote reciprocal learning about the ocean sciences; and (3) ensure that personnel recruitment, retention, and promotion policies reflect JEDI goals and values.
The committee has been organized around three primary goals, and objectives have been developed for each goal.
1. Catalyze community impact and outreach to broaden participation and accelerate solutions to scientific and societal challenges.
- Expose the broader community (general public, K-12 education, and undergraduates) to ocean science and bring a diverse group of people into the community.
2. Promote and exemplify an inclusive campus culture. (Coordinate with Campus Community Committee)
- Develop a community where everyone feels welcomed, valued, safe, and a sense of belonging.
- Promote and celebrate DEI, leading to increased awareness of our differences.
- Increase valuing contributions and develop a culture of service, appreciation, accountability, responsibility, allowing for greater flexibility and innovation.
3. Align personnel recruitment, retention, and promotion efforts to ensure JEDI values are at the forefront.
- Ensuring all policies and practices reflect JEDI goals and values.
- Develop a formal onboarding process for all new hires and new students.
- Enhance recognition and award nomination.
Committee Membership (January 2023)
The JEDI Committee includes representatives across functional and institutional roles from the Narragansett Bay Campus including Faculty, Staff, Post-Docs, and Students from GSO, and representatives from the Narragansett Indian Tribe, Ocean Engineering, the Coastal Resources Center, Rhode Island Sea Grant, the Coastal Institute, NOAA, and EPA.
- Abbigail Baskind – GSO Student & Secretary
- Fenix Garcia Tigreros – GSO faculty & Co-Chair
- Rainer Lohmann – GSO faculty & Co-Chair
- Alex DeCiccio – ISC staff
- Amber Neville – CI
- Andrea Gingras – GSO Public Engagement
- Becky Robinson – GSO faculty
- Cassius Spears – Narragansett Indian Tribe
- Catalina Martinez – NOAA staff (ADVISORY)
- Corinna Breusing – GSO MRS
- Heather McNair – GSO postdoc
- Jackie Witterschien – CI/CRC
- Jade Lopez Case – OE student
- Justin Sankey – GSO student
- Jim Yoder – GSO emeritus
- Kate Mulvaney – EPA
- Kim Hindle – GSO staff
- Kim Hyde – NOAA staff
- Kim Ohnemus – RI Sea Grant
- Luis Pomales Velazquez – GSO student
- Meredith Clark – GSO staff
- Meredith Haas – RI Sea Grant
- Michaela Cashman – EPA
- Sarah Gaines – CRC staff
- Stephen Licht – OE faculty (part-time)