Background as it relates to the Academic Plan
The Student Self-ID supports the priorities of the academic plan. The priorities include:
- Enable greater student engagement and success through exceptional experiences;
- Increase SRC (Scholarly Research and Creative Activity) excellence, intensity and impact;
- Foster an innovation ecosystem; and
- Expand community engagement and city building.
We know that some groups have been historically and persistently under represented in higher education generally or in specific programs, such as women in STEM. Providing equitable opportunities to access a university education is an important goal for the university. We also need to make learning and the educational environment more inclusive for students who haven’t typically been present but who are making up a growing number of students, e.g. Indigenous students and students with disabilities. Having a diverse student population has been shown to enhance learning for all students. TMU needs to understand the students who are enrolled at university as well as those who are not enrolled so that we can establish a baseline and measure our progress towards a goal of becoming even more inclusive. We also want better data to compare the representation of our faculty with, which will also help us to attract and retain diverse students.
Academic leaders and faculty have long been asking for student diversity data by program. Student groups have also asked for the data. For example, Indigenous Students Rising and the Black Liberation Collective have requested information in order to help address issues raised in the campus community.