Skip to Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Compliance site navigationSkip to main content

Ramapo College LogoWelcome to the Office of Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Compliance (EDIC) at Ramapo College of New Jersey. The office was created in October 2016 with the goal of providing point and coordinating leadership for diversity, inclusion, compliance and equity issues throughout the college.

Equity, Diversity, Inclusion & Compliance Update - COVID 19

We are still here for you! With the rapidly evolving situation regarding COVID-19 (Coronavirus), the Office of Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, & Compliance has modified its operations until further notice. However, we are as committed as ever to to speak with you about matters related to equity & diversity programs, bias, discrimination & harassment, and Title IX. Please visit our “Contact Us” page below to get in touch with one of our staff members directly or send an email to diversity@ramapo.edu and one of our staff members will get back to you within one (1) business day.

Even remotely, we must all deliver on the College’s mission and commitment to a diverse, inclusive and bias-free environment. Let us continue to treat one another with respect and resist the urge to judge individuals from different backgrounds with contempt and fear. We hope the resources below are of assistance to you during this time.

6/1/2020 Message to the Campus re: The Killing of George Floyd

The message below was shared with the College on June 1, 2020 with the full endorsement of President Mercer and members of the Cabinet. We stand together in support of creating a more just, equitable, and peaceful society.

  • Peter P. Mercer, President
  • Angela Cristini, Interim Vice President, Institutional Advancement
  • Susan Gaulden, Interim Provost and Vice President, Academic Affairs
  • Kirsten Loewrigkeit, Vice President, Administration & Finance
  • Nicole Morgan Agard, Chief Equity and Diversity Officer
  • Christopher Romano, Vice President, Enrollment Management and Student Affairs
  • Michael Tripodi, Vice President and General Counsel
  • Brittany Williams-Goldstein, Chief of Staff and Board Liaison

In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends” – Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Dear Students, Faculty & Staff,

I am writing you with a heavy heart, in response to a number of events relating to discrimination, bias and racism that have taken place over the past few weeks, both at the College and throughout the United States.

Many of us were stunned when we observed firsthand and/or learned of the emails containing racial slurs and pictures that were circulated amongst our students on May 6th.  Sadly, two days after this email incident, many of us, myself included, took part in a 2.23 mile walk (or run) in memory of Ahmaud Arbery, a 25 year old unarmed black male who was shot and killed while jogging in a Brunswick, Georgia neighborhood. Ahmaud would have turned 26 years old on May 8th and the 2.23 miles signified the day he died, February 23rd.

Flash forward to last week, when many of us watched with outrage the video of a woman in Central Park who called the police and falsely reported that a black man was “threatening her and her dog”, when the video recording of the incident revealed the man did no such thing and to the contrary, merely asked that she put her dog on a leash.  And the culmination came the next day, when the video recording surfaced of the death of George Floyd after being pinned down on a Minneapolis street while a police officer is shown pressing his knee against George’s neck.

These incidents are just a few examples of the many acts of racism and discrimination that African-Americans have had to endure for decades and are still enduring today.  These issues are at the forefront now because of the use of cell phone videos and social media, but for many of our students, faculty and staff, they serve as reminders of very personal experiences similar to the ones that recently took place.  However, let me be clear- this is not a black, African-American or “person of color” issue alone- this is also a human rights and justice issue.

So where do we go from here? First, to our students, faculty and staff who are suffering mentally and emotionally from the events of the past few weeks, please know that I, along with the members of the administration are here for you and support you. We will continue to denounce all acts of racism, bias and discrimination at the College, both remotely and on campus, and my office will continue to investigate all reports of bias and discrimination.  To our students, as a reminder, the staff in the Center for Health and Counseling Services are available to speak with you to discuss and/or provide emotional and mental health support.

In recent years, our College has established the Office of Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Compliance, we have mandated diversity and inclusion training for students and employees, and we have hosted town halls and other fora to ventilate concerns and to advance change.  But more work needs to be done.  In the next few weeks, the members of the Bias Response Implementation Team will finalize the College Bias Policy. Over the summer, my office will begin working on the creation of a Diversity Committee, inclusive of stakeholders at the College, to begin discussions regarding the planning and implementation of a College Strategic Diversity Plan that is in alignment with the College’s Strategic Plan and in particular, Goal 2 of the Strategic Plan (Cultivate and Support Equity, Diversity & Inclusion).

We recognize that members of our community may need a safe space to engage in discussion, process and healing about these events and that some of us are also looking for ways in which we can be of service.  Our office will be working with other departments and student organizations to create a virtual forum and we will share the details in the next few days. If you would like to lend your energy and compassion to the development of this forum, please contact E.D.I.C.

Finally, but most importantly, we must come together as a community and speak out against injustice and inequality. Artist Danielle Coke poignantly stated “Until you fix it in your heart and address it at home, nothing [will] change…”. We must ALL do our part, at the College and in our homes and communities to speak up, discuss, and denounce all acts of racism.

Best regards and continue to be safe,
Nicole

Nicole Morgan Agard
Chief Equity & Diversity Officer
Office of Equity, Diversity, Inclusion & Compliance

5/7/2020 Message to the Campus re: Biased Email Messages to Students

Dear Students, Faculty & Staff:

I am writing in regard to the beyond abhorrent abuse of the College’s email system that took place yesterday evening and is believed to be perpetrated by some of our students.  As President Mercer stated, my office along with the Offices of Student Conduct and Information Technology Services are currently investigating this matter.  While the College cannot discuss the details of an ongoing investigation, please know that all individuals found responsible for violating College policy will be held accountable to the fullest extent possible, which could include suspension and/or expulsion. The words and images that were used in some of the emails are detestable, harmful and have real consequences.

Read More…

3/22/2020 Message from the Chief Equity & Diversity Officer Regarding Inclusivity, Bias, and Reporting

Dear Students, Faculty & Staff,

I echo the sentiments expressed by President Mercer and Provost Gaulden and would like to reiterate that the members of the administration are here to support you during this challenging time.  Even without the bricks and mortar of classrooms and labs and the cancellation of in-person meetings, campus activities and gatherings, we remain connected to one another.

Read More…

Ramapo College Celebrates Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month

The Office of Equity, Diversity, Inclusion & Compliance (EDIC) is pleased to continue its tradition of recognizing April 2020 as Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month, in which we acknowledge and honor the history, heritage and contributions of Asian Americans, South Asians, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders.  Please visit our Equity and Diversity Programs page for ways to join us in the virtual celebration of this month.

We are also pleased to share this video compilation, comprised of messages from some of our Ramapo students, faculty and staff!

About E.D.I.C.

EDIC is comprised of the following offices: Office of Affirmative Action and Workplace Compliance; Office of Title IX, ADA and Compliance Training; and Equity and Diversity Programs for Students.

EDIC coordinates with the Admissions Department, the Office of the Provost and the Human Resources Department to further develop the College’s recruitment and hiring programs and practices in an effort to further increase the number of diverse faculty, staff and students at Ramapo College.

In addition, through the Offices of Affirmative Action and Workplace Compliance and Title IX, all complaints of discrimination, sexual harassment and hostile work environment and alleged violations of Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (“Title IX”), including claims of sexual assault and misconduct, as well as alleged violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) will be promptly and thoroughly investigated.  EDIC also will continue to develop diversity awareness workshops and programs and provide discrimination and sexual harassment training sessions for all College administrators, faculty and staff.

Reporting Bias

Bias reporting and related resources are available here.

Inclusive Remote Teaching Resources for Faculty

Dear Faculty,

The information below has been compiled to assist you and our students as you transition together to remote instruction.  Understanding that this may not be an easy transition for many, these resources offer helpful tips and suggestions for delivering a more inclusive online teaching environment. 

For specific questions or support regarding Instructional Technology needs and pedagogical practices, please contact your Dean or a staff member from the Instructional Design Center, https://www.ramapo.edu/idc/.

As always, please do not hesitate to contact me at nmagard@ramapo.edu with any questions you may have. 

Best,

Nicole Morgan Agard

Chief Equity and Diversity Officer

In addition to the plethora of materials available through the George T. Potter Library, here are a few resources:

Inclusive Remote Work Resources for Staff

Dear Staff,

The information below has been compiled to assist you as you transition to remote work.  Understanding that this may not be an easy transition for many, these resources offer helpful tips and suggestions for fostering a more inclusive remote work environment. 

For specific questions or support regarding Technology needs, please contact the ITS Help Desk.

As always, please do not hesitate to contact me at nmagard@ramapo.edu with any questions you may have. 

Best,

Nicole Morgan Agard

Chief Equity and Diversity Officer

In addition to the plethora of materials available through the George T. Potter Library and Human Resources, here are a few resources: