Education & Social Sciences

Diversity and Inclusion

image of students celebrating diversity and inclusion


At the intersection of sociology, social work and criminology is a minor for students interested in diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI). This minor is available to all students regardless of their choice in major. The diversity and inclusion minor challenges students to discuss specific issues and problems surrounding but not limited to:

  • mass incarceration
  • inequality in school funding
  • disparities in health and health care availability
  • political polarization

  • The United States is now more racially and ethnically diverse than ever before. About one-third of all Americans live in a county where there is racial plurality, meaning there is not one dominant racial group, and almost all U.S. population growth is among people of color. How society considers this increasing diversity will be a hot topic for decades to come and MU graduates with this minor will be equipped to contribute to those discussions in communities around the United States and the globe.


    Diversity and inclusion as a minor can offer possibilities within careers pertinent to:

  • public policy
  • human services
  • research analysis
  • community organizing
  • business administration
  • teaching
  • law enforcement

  • As companies, organizations and agencies pursue DEI initiatives, deeper trust and more commitment is created between employers and employees. Trust and commitment lead to happier employees and less turnover. Nonprofit organizations and businesses alike continue to emphasize the importance of DEI within their mission statements and corporate cultures. An understanding of the issues surrounding diversity and inclusion establishes a basis for the social interactions needed to aid or even create diversified, equitable and inclusive cultures within the workplace, regardless of talent.

    Learning Goals and Outcomes

    Students will analyze the intersectionality of identities and how they compound to increase privilege or marginalization in people’s lives. In turn, students will:

  • identify their own intersecting identities of race, class, gender, age and ability
  • analyze how intersecting identities privilege or marginalize in a systematically stratified society
  • cultivate cultural intelligence when interacting with different population

  • Students will be challenged to understand the systematic and structural aspects of various kinds of inequality within society resulting in:

  • understanding that racism and other structural systems of marginalization are more complex than identifying good and bad behavior
  • demonstrating the insidious nature of systems of marginalization
  • developing the skills and knowledge of cultural humility to understand how systemic marginalization has affected different populations

  • Students will reimagine new systems and structures that build equity and decrease marginalization and oppression in society. Outcomes include:

  • demonstrating how diversity and inclusion improve a student’s chosen major and future vocation
  • evaluating alternative strategies of reforming society to be more just and equitable
  • creating examples of new societal systems that promote true celebrations of difference and seek to include people and their uniqueness

  • Why Manchester?

    Building on the history and mission of Manchester University as well as the current moment in time, the diversity and inclusion minor is available as an opportunity for all students in all majors to equip them with skills and knowledge they can use to navigate the social spaces of their chosen career path. This minor supplies a range of skills and knowledge including broader perspectives when brainstorming, problem solving and developing innovative ideas.

    From the laboratory to the boardroom, classroom and the office, diversity, equity and inclusion are increasingly becoming critical priorities for many businesses. DEI initiatives help companies, organizations and agencies better understand and serve their customers, clients and patients in a world of ever-changing demographics. The diversity and inclusion minor at MU is poised to place graduates into the conversations that meaningfully address and influence workplace cultures, encouraging more welcoming environments from the top down.