Posted: June 22, 2016

Contact: Doug Anderson, doug.anderson@MinnState.edu, 651-201-1426

ST. PAUL, Minn., June 22, 2016 – More than halfway into a five-year effort to increase the diversity of its faculty and staff, Minnesota State Colleges and Universities is ahead of its goals.

“The diversity of our students is one of our greatest assets,” said Steven Rosenstone, chancellor of Minnesota State Colleges and Universities, “and a student body as diverse as ours will achieve even greater success when served by a similarly diverse faculty and staff. This issue is central to student success, central to the success of our colleges and universities, and central to the future of our state.”

A status update regarding the initiative was provided by Toyia Younger, associate vice chancellor of student affairs and interim chief diversity officer, and Mark Carlson, vice chancellor of human resources, to a joint meeting of the Human Resources and the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion committees of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities Board of Trustees.

As a measure of this progress, Younger cited:

  • The percentage of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities workforce who are employees of color and American Indian employees has increased from 8.3 percent in 2007 to 11.3 percent in 2016 (preliminary data).

Efforts to attract more diverse employees are paying off:

  • Fully 14.8 percent of new hires are employees of color and American Indian compared to 11.3 percent for the workforce as a whole.
  • The greatest gains are in the diversity of new managers and administrators (25.2 percent), professionals (22.2 percent), and service and support staff (17.1 percent).

Executive searches have been especially successful in leading to diverse hires:

  • Over the past three years, two-thirds of new presidents have been women, and one-third have been from underrepresented groups.

“Increasing the diversity of our workforce is a critical task and challenging task,” said Younger.  “Although there are areas where we still have work to do, I am very pleased by the solid progress we are making.”

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Minnesota State Colleges and Universities consists of 37 colleges and universities with over 16,000 employees offering nearly 4,000 educational programs to nearly 400,000 students. It is the fifth-largest higher education system in the United States.