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Statement from Senior Vice President for Student Affairs Martino Harmon regarding racist social media post

August 16, 2017

The social media post containing a slur that was reported today was racist, thoughtless and hurtful. It was particularly troubling in light of the recent occurrences in Charlottesville and is further evidence of a continuing need to fight racist attitudes from all sources. We are clearly not where we need to be. This in no way reflects the attitudes or values of Iowa State University and is counter to the climate we are attempting to build.

We value all of our students. As part of our new student onboarding, we will reinforce diversity and inclusion and teach and demonstrate our Principles of Community. We are also working to improve our new student onboarding to address campus climate issues. As a University, our goal is to ensure that all of our students are safe, included, and have the ability to succeed. We will continue to work with the specific students involved in this incident as well as all other students, faculty, staff, and administrators to advance toward this goal.


2017-2022 ISU Strategic Plan, Goal 4

Continue to enhance and cultivate the ISU Experience where faculty, staff, students, and visitors are safe and feel welcomed, supported, included, and valued by the university and each other.


Subgoal 4.1
Develop and implement a comprehensive campus climate assessment system to regularly evaluate the climate at Iowa State University as experienced by all. Regularly evaluate, disseminate, and publicly report this data.
Metric S4.1
Continuous improvement in campus climate as measured by campus climate assessment system

Subgoal 4.2
Enhance the safety, health, well–being, and security of faculty, staff, students, and visitors.
Metric S4.2
As measured by the developed campus climate assessment system and current safety/security reporting mechanisms

Subgoal 4.3
Create, expand, and invest in opportunities for faculty, staff, and students to connect and build meaningful relations with others while recognizing the multiple intersecting identities, perspectives, and developmental differences people hold (aligned with the ACPA NASPA standard for social justice and inclusion).
Metric S4.3
Participation in these opportunities and the impact as measured by campus climate assessment system

Related Actions

Action 4.1
Enhance efforts to recruit, hire, train, and retain diverse employees.
Metric A4.1
Report on annual efforts and resulting changes in the number of diverse employees

Action 4.2
Enhance efforts to recruit, retain, and graduate a diverse student body.
Metric A4.2
Report on annual efforts and resulting changes in the number of diverse students

Action 4.3
Establish and deploy a visitors code of conduct.
Metric A4.3
Inclusion in university policies

Action 4.4
Supervisors will acknowledge and include employees’ efforts related to diversity, equity, and inclusion in the annual performance evaluation process.
Metric A4.4
Senior administrators report on annual progress