An IDEAL Solution to Sustaining Temple’s Culture of Diversity and Inclusion

Since its earliest days, Temple University has ensured that diversity and inclusion are at the core of everything it undertakes.

“We have an intentional focus on faculty and staff hiring to help uphold those values,” said Dr. Tiffenia Archie, Assistant Vice Provost for Institutional Diversity, Equity, Advocacy and Leadership (IDEAL). “Our goal is to create and sustain Temple University’s culture of diversity and inclusion. One of the ways we seek to achieve that goal is be conducting numerous inclusive hiring and retention best practice workshops across our campuses.”

IDEALS challenge in achieving its mandate, which Dr. Archie summed up as “Small office, large charge,” made her seek out inter-University partners, including the University College Office of Digital Education (ODE). ODE got right to work, providing instructional and multimedia design support.

 “We do a lot of our work in person, but we wanted to find another avenue to bring best practice-based information to campus stakeholders at their own pace,” she said.  ”We felt working with ODE would help create an interactive, outcomes-driven online experience that would provide a better opportunity to do more tracking and put some more numbers around that. With that data, we’ll be able to figure out which staff has gone through the training so that those individuals can serve on committees in an informed way.”

Creating an online module would also make IDEAL’s “best practice content more accessible as well,” said Dr. Archie.

According to ODE, all of Temple University’s globally positioned hiring managers, departmental chairs, and onboarding specialists will, on-demand, always have access to this updated, and highly updateable, information.

“Launching an effective online module allows our team to focus on other important diversity-centric matters,” Dr. Archie said.

ODE, Dr. Archie said, has been agreat resource in sharing best practices around the delivery of the online module.”

“They were phenomenal in assisting with the interactive design of the module and the script writing for our videos.,” she said. “Paul Bowers (Associate Director of ODE) and Meg Sova (ODE’s Multimedia Production Manager) were instrumental at understanding what would pique people’s interests and helped me make more conscientious and thoughtful about the user experience compared to an in-person presentation.” 

Sova, Dr. Archie said, explained how  people take in information, how they synthesize it, and the best way for the content to be broken down for the intended audience.

“”Meg’s critical ear and critical eye made our content much more engaging. It was incredibly helpful to work with people that ‘Get Temple.’” ODE was able to use their knowledge, expertise, and sense of place to craft a product that fully embodied the Temple community and our values,” She said.  “We created a product that was engaging, critical, and transformative.”

Currently, IDEAL is conducting Beta testing of the module. This spring, IDEAL training participants will complete the module and provide feedback.  This feedback will be shared with ODE and recommendations and updates may be made.

“We have a number of people that ODE’s services would be beneficial for, especially our office of multicultural training that could have 10 modules developed to address their aims,” she said. “We are plainly looking forward to working with ODE again. If I had to describe the Office of Digital Education, I’d have to say —  Impactful. Creative. Patient!”