Contributions to Diversity Statement

Diversity is a defining feature of California's past, present, and future. Increasing diversity to better reflect the population of California is fundamental to UC San Francisco's mission as a public institution and imperative to achieving its full potential.

According to the UC Diversity Statement, diversity refers to “the variety of personal experiences, values, and worldviews that arise from differences of culture and circumstance. Such differences include race, ethnicity, gender, age, religion, language, abilities/disabilities, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, and geographic region, and more."

One way in which the UCSF Office of Diversity and Outreach—with the help of the Faculty Equity Advisors—supports the university’s commitment to advance diversity and equity is by promoting best practices for faculty recruitment.

These include broadening the candidate pool, agreeing on criteria to judge all applicants before the search begins, guarding against biases in decision making, and treating all candidates respectfully and equally.

University policy states that a candidate's race, gender, ethnicity or other personal characteristics may not be considered in the evaluation of academic appointments. However, search committees can consider past or proposed contributions to diversity as part of the overall review process.

Learn about the purpose of a Contributions to Diversity statement and how statements are considered or evaluated at UCSF. Find guidelines, examples of contributions to diversity, and other resources to help you understand or develop a statement.

According to University of California Academic Personnel Policy (APM), to preserve and foster the quality of UC as one of the nation’s leading public institutions, peer review committees are expected to evaluate the contributions of all faculty in view of the critical need for equity and excellence.

UC San Francisco is now requiring that faculty candidates submit a statement on their past contributions to diversity and equity and future plans for continuing this effort as part of their application for an academic appointment.

“In addition to research, teaching, and general professional and public service, service contributions that promote diversity and equal opportunity are encouraged and given recognition in the evaluation of the candidate’s qualifications. Examples include, but are not limited to, developing strategies for the educational or professional advancement of students in underrepresented groups; efforts to advance equitable access and diversity in education; and activities such as recruitment, retention, and mentoring or advising of underrepresented students or new faculty.” -- APM 210-1-d. At UCSF, this also includes advancing equitable access and diversity in research, health promotion, and clinical services.

The purpose of the statement is to identify candidates who have professional skills, experience, and/or willingness to engage in activities that would enhance campus diversity and equity efforts.

The Contributions to Diversity Statement should describe your past experience, activities and future plans to advance diversity, equity and inclusion, in alignment with UC San Francisco’s mission to reflect the diversity of California and to meet the educational and clinical needs and interests of its diverse population. Some faculty candidates may not have substantial past activities. If that is the case, we recommend focusing on future plans in your statement. A more developed and substantial plan is expected for senior candidates.

Past Experience:

Describe your awareness and any past experience or background that has made you aware of inequities and challenges faced by historically underrepresented or economically disadvantaged groups.

Past Activities:

Mentoring Activities: If you mentored students, post-docs, trainees, staff or faculty from underrepresented groups, describe the specific context and objective of the mentoring, including your personal efforts. Include details that may be relevant, including the number of people who benefited, duration, and outcomes (i.e., success and progress of mentees during and after mentoring, including employment, educational success, etc).

Committee Service: If you served on a committee or board that focused on diversity, equity, climate and/or inclusion, describe the committee’s accomplishments and your role in helping achieve them. Include your position on the committee, its duration, and other relevant details.

Research Activities: If any of your past research effort specifically contributed to diversity, equity and inclusion, describe the work and any impact or positive outcomes it has had on the university or broader community.

Clinical Activities: If any of your past clinical work specifically contributed to promoting health equity, reducing health disparities and improving the health of marginalized, underserved, or vulnerable populations, describe the work.

Other Activities (e.g. recruitment/retention/teaching/community): Describe the activity and its context (e.g. a specific conference or organization, student retention or outreach activity, course development to reach a specific group, outreach to a local school, or work with a diversity-related non-profit). What was your role and personal effort? How did these activities relate to campus needs?

Planned Activities:

The first step is to gather information on activities you would like to pursue or continue to pursue while at UC San Francisco and how they might fit into the research or clinical area, department, campus, or national/international context.

For each proposed activity you include, describe the role you envision having and what you would like to accomplish in the next two to five years. Who would you like to engage in your efforts, and how would you plan to engage them? Be as specific as possible, but realistic in terms of your effort and time commitment.

Contributions to diversity, equity and inclusion can take a variety of forms, including:

  • Efforts to advance equitable access to education and outreach at all levels;
  • Public service that addresses the needs of California’s diverse population such as: educational presentations, partnerships with community based organizations/groups with a goal of improving health and wellness in communities;
  • Research in a scholar’s area of expertise that: discovers, documents and seeks to understand health disparities and improve the health of vulnerable populations;
  • Mentoring/sponsoring/advising of students at all levels: assisting those who are underrepresented in health sciences, underrepresented minorities (URM) or disenfranchised populations with understanding the process of merits and promotions, and encouraging career advice and career advancement, and providing sponsorship to facilitate career advancement;
  • Teaching: incorporating diversity and inclusion training, health disparity issues, population risk factors, and research findings of URM/disenfranchised groups in core curriculum content, and development or use of pedagogies that address different learning styles and/or learning disabilities.
  • Clinical care: contributing to promoting health equity, reducing health disparities and improving the health of marginalized, underserved, or vulnerable populations.
  • Service: Participating in programs that include a focus on diversity and inclusion, and increase the participation of historically under-represented groups across dentistry, medicine, nursing, pharmacy and other health related fields with a focus on removing barriers facing women, minorities, veterans, people with disabilities or other individuals who are members of groups that been historically excluded from higher education.
  • Administration: Developing and utilizing resources and tools that encourage the recruitment and retention of diverse individuals, diversity and inclusion training of learners, faculty and staff.

These Examples of Contributions to Diversity Statements may provide additional guidance on identifying contributions to diversity and preparing a personal statement.

The following UCSF campus resources may help identify ways to contribute to diversity while at UC San Francisco.

Candidates may be evaluated on their past and/or planned contributions to diversity during the selection process. The search committee, Dean’s Office, and Academic Affairs may view the Contributions to Diversity Statement in combination with the entire application file.

Once a member of the faculty at UC San Francisco, contributions to diversity are recognized through the promotion review process and the Diversity Awards Program.