Brief: Results of HEDS Climate Survey Highlight Shortcomings of the Colgate Community

In an email from Vice President for Equity and Inclusion Renee Madison and President Brian Casey, results from the Higher Education Data Survey Consortium (HEDS) Climate Survey, completed in fall 2021, were released to the Colgate community on the morning of Tuesday, Sept. 27. The email provided a comprehensive analysis of the data after student and faculty groups, along with the Office of Equity and Diversity discussed and reviewed the results. 

One of the major findings of the survey data was that on Colgate’s campus, those who identify as LGBTQ+, international students, women, or BIPOC often experience less support from the community than others. 66 percent of respondents claimed they felt satisfied with the overall climate on campus, but these numbers dropped when respondents were asked about the climate in regard to diversity and inclusion.

One statistic from the survey showed that only 31.5 percent of BIPOC faculty members and 45.3 percent of BIPOC students felt satisfied with their sense of belonging on Colgate’s campus. Additionally, 100 percent of non-binary identifying faculty members claimed to have been discriminated against by a member of the community.

The report found that “the findings reinforce the need for a systematic institutional effort to address issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion if all Colgate community members are to experience the same positive experiences that are enjoyed by those who belong to the majority of many social identity groups.”Recognizing the need for broad and institutional change, Madison and Casey urged the community to “continue to vigorously pursue the steps outlined in Colgate’s DEI Plan.” To achieve these goals, Madison and Casey outlined steps for students, staff and faculty to move toward a more inclusive campus environment including increased transparency in administrative appointments and greater representation in Greek letter organizations.