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‘All S.E.T.’ Aims for Inclusive Excellence

michelle cromwell

SUNY Plattsburgh and its Diversity, Equity and Inclusion division are launching a campaign this semester aimed at inclusive excellence.

The All S.E.T. initiative is designed to be student-centered (S), equity-minded (E) and trauma-informed (T). It is a focused approach to delivering curricular and co-curricular activities, as well as policies, programs and practices.

Student-centered is placing the diversity, equity, and inclusion needs of our students as the center and axis of what we do, said Dr. Michelle Cromwell, vice president for diversity, equity and inclusion.

“These include the courses we offer, who teaches them, the initiatives we develop, the staff and faculty we recruit and retain, the students we admit and support to persist, and the ways the institution is administered,”

It also keys the college to assess and address the campus climate and environment, which is what students experience physically and psychologically.

Equity-mindedness requires a sophisticated understanding of inequity and the ways groups are marginalized — excluded from accessing the opportunities that college offers.

“Equity-mindedness also calls for us to be self-reflective, and to acknowledge the ways we act as oppressors wittingly or unwittingly,” Cromwell said.

Being trauma-informed requires that we embed a comprehensive and supportive atmosphere “that addresses the needs of trauma survivors.”

“When our long-term planning as well as our day-to-day actions focus on being student-centered, equity-minded and trauma-informed, we, as an institution, will be all set,” they said. “Our students will experience an inclusive campus climate that supports them to thrive, persist and realize their full potential.”

A component of All S.E.T. began this fall with the education of administrators; president, vice presidents and deans. This group has committed the first Friday of every month to spend almost two hours to review and discuss literature and engage in activities that begin the process of building their equity literacy.  

Community spaces both in person and virtual will center on creating supportive spaces, activities, workshops and dialogs focused on social justice and anti-oppression work, wellness, and the arts as we support one another, Cromwell said. A series of affinity spaces for the SUNY Plattsburgh community titled “Be About It! Act Now,” will continue over the fall and into the spring to equip community members with tools to become anti-oppressive.

To learn more or for more information, contact Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at 518-564-5410 or email [email protected].

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