Founded in 1766, Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, is a large public research university, and the eighth-oldest college in the United States. Originally founded as Queen’s College during the colonial era, Rutgers is only one of two “colonial colleges” to transition to a public university.
Vice Chancellor Felicia McGinty leads the Division of Student Affairs, comprised of 800 full-time and 2000 part-time staff members across many departments, including Residence Life, New Student Orientation, Fraternity & Sorority Affairs, and the Center for Social Justice Education and LGBTQ Communities, among others.
According to McGinty, “At Rutgers we strive to cultivate a workforce that is diverse and culturally competent,” and
“approach our work holistically and … integrate the ethos of social justice and inclusion in all that we do.”
McGinty’s goal “to move beyond lip service to decision-making and priority setting that reflect our commitment [to diversity]” allows the Division of Student Affairs a clear path forward in their pursuits of a diverse and culturally competent community.
This deeply engrained commitment to diversity is reflected in more than just words at Rutgers.
Ji Hyun Lee, director of the Asian American Cultural Center, shares, “Valuing diversity and inclusivity is more than
acknowledging identities and difference. It is more than a statement on a university’s webpage or a training certificate that hangs on an office wall. It requires agency, accountability and active engagement with students to serve them as a whole student.”
At Rutgers, it is clear that the focus on diversity and inclusion is central to how staff see their role as employees of one of the oldest universities in the country.
Acknowledging that “universities are a dynamic marketplace of ideas that unpack prejudices, stereotypes and who we are as human beings before mainstream American culture and society,”
Mark Schuster, senior dean of students, “loves that Rutgers has always been a university to speak its mind regarding social movements and changing identities.”
It is clear that Rutgers offers an engaging place to work, and one that maintains a clear and dedicated focus on the value and inclusion of all of its community members. This approach to diversity is what makes the Division of Student Affairs at Rutgers one of this year’s “30+ Promising Places to Work in Student Affairs.”