Our History

In 2010, then-President Steven Knapp created the Council on Diversity and Inclusion, which recommended the creation of the position Vice Provost for Diversity & Inclusion and led to the Office of Diversity & Inclusion. He charged the council to make the George Washington University the school of choice for more students, the employer of choice for more faculty and staff, a more inclusive life-long community of learners for alumni, and a more effective partner in addressing the challenges of the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area community of which the university is a part.

The overriding theme that has framed diversity and inclusion efforts and activities at GW is the reality that diversity and academic excellence go hand-in-hand. They are mutually reinforcing objectives. Diversity concerns embody a range of moral, legal, and cultural issues. The objective of our university when it comes to diversity and inclusion is to enhance the academic excellence of GW by making it a more diverse and inclusive community.

Given the demographic realities of the Washington, D.C. area and the increasingly globalized world with which the university is engaged, it is critically important to be able to draw from, develop, and benefit from the diverse human resources that frame our world. Given this perspective and objective, diversity is understood quite broadly to include matters of race, ethnicity, gender, income, religion, sexual orientation, intellectual traditions, and more. The term “diversity,” therefore, reflects many complex and longstanding conflicts, challenges, and opportunities.