The Collective Impact approach is premised on the belief that no single policy, department, organization or program can tackle or solve the increasingly complex social problems we face as a society. Achieving diversity, inclusion and inclusive excellence in higher education to better serve students, faculty and staff is complex.
The approach calls for multiple organizations or entities from different sectors of the university to abandon their own agenda in favor of a common agenda, shared measurement and alignment of effort.
Unlike collaboration or partnership, Collective Impact initiatives have centralized infrastructure – known as a “backbone organization” or the “container for change” – with dedicated staff whose role is to help participating organizations shift from acting alone to acting in concert.
During the Fall of 2017, a number of Collective Impact open forums were held at Cal Poly in which participants identified key need areas to effect change in the areas of diversity and inclusion. Emergent from these forums came three Strategy Groups that started meeting in Winter of 2018: Campus Climate, Curriculum, and Recruit & Retain. These Strategy Groups were charged with developing a set of short-and long-term recommendations for the Cal Poly Inclusive Excellence Council to review and move forward to OUDI and other entities to enact. The Collective Impact strategy groups submitted a series of recommendations to OUDI and Cal Poly leadership in June of 2018 for approval by the Inclusive Excellence Committee.
In November 2018, OUDI presented the State of Collective Impact to the campus community with a focus on the following next steps:
– Inclusive Excellence Committee reviews recommendations and approves strategic plan
– Strategy Groups and subgroups will (re)form and being meeting/implementation
– Strategy Groups review existing efforts, develop assessment strategies, and reinforce activities
– Strategy Groups report out and Inclusive Excellence Committee report out