Academic Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Alum Sam Kirk's art celebrates underrepresented communities and is on the cover of the DEI website. Photo: Phil Dembinski '08.

Welcome to the website for Academic Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) at Columbia College Chicago. 

As a college, we are committed to an anti-racist campus that takes head-on the systemic issues of racial and other forms of discrimination that permeate the whole of our society. One of our central foci in the area of DEI is enhancing our curriculum to challenge the hegemonic emphasis on canonical cultural and artistic traditions, which often result in a lack of diverse narratives. Along with our engagement with curriculum, we are committed to addressing issues of power and privilege in each of the disciplines we teach as well as all of the various structures that we use to support our students, faculty, and staff.

Learn more about the Academic DEI mission


We collectively acknowledge that Columbia College Chicago occupies the stolen ancestral, traditional, and contemporary Lands of the Anishinaabeg—Three Fires Confederacy of the Ojibwe, Odawa, and Potawatomi, as well as the Miami, Menominee, Ho-Chunk, Illinois, Sac and Fox nations. Although there are no recognized Indian nations in the state of Illinois, we recognize, support and advocate for the sovereignty of all Indian nations, for the historic Indigenous communities in Illinois, for Indigenous individuals and communities who live in the Chicagoland area, and for those who were forcibly removed from their Homelands. By offering this Land Acknowledgment, we reaffirm our College’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Mission statement, and affirm Indigenous sovereignty and will hold Columbia College Chicago more accountable to the needs of American Indian and Indigenous peoples.


The Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Executive Committe Seeks Application for New Members


To support the college’s commitment to equity and justice, the Office of the President created the DEI Executive Committee in 2015-16. The DEI Executive Committee assists the Director of Academic DEI on the design, implementation, and evaluation of initiatives that will embed a commitment to DEI in the college’s curriculum, programming, and academic personnel in accordance with our academic DEI mission. The roles and responsibilities of the DEI Executive Committee include:

 Membership on the DEI Executive Committee is a two-year commitment with an option to self-nominate after a one-year hiatus from the committee. The DEI Executive Committee will convene monthly. The committee will have representatives from full- and part-time faculty, staff, and administration. Currently, the committee seeks to fill six vacant seats with:

Thank you to the following outgoing committee members for their dedicated service:

Current DEI Executive Committee members:

Eligibility and Nomination Process:

We are looking for members with the capacity for radical collaboration who can work with vulnerability, humility, transparency, and accountability. Any member of our community may self-nominate, and representative bodies may also determine appropriate methods of selection as a basis for forwarding nominations. Full-time faculty and staff must have taken the Undoing Racism Workshop or similar antiracism training.

In order for the DEI Executive Committee to be effective, its membership must possess expertise that transcends personal experience. All who self-nominate or are nominated should submit a professional curriculum vitae and a one-page statement addressing the points below:


Nominations for students and administrative members should be sent to

Nominations for part-time faculty members should be sent to

The deadline for applications is Monday, October 31.



Jessica Meharry

Director, Academic DEI


Danielle Alexander

Program Coordinator, Academic DEI & ArTT