Envisioning A More Inclusive and Welcoming Environment
On Wednesday, October 31, 2018, 90 members of Einstein and Montefiore’s leadership staff, representing administrative, academic and clinical departments, gathered in the Lubin Dining Hall for an all-day Diversity and Inclusion Retreat. The objective of the retreat was to identify the long- and short-term opportunities and challenges around building and sustaining a more diverse faculty and staff, and enhancing our environment so that it is welcoming for all.
Participants in the retreat worked in small teams to identify various issues and how best to address them.
Einstein Dean, Dr. Gordon F. Tomaselli welcomed the participants and provided an overview of his commitment to implementing the new Diversity and Inclusion Strategic Plan for Excellence, which he said, “will allow Einstein to continue and enhance our deep commitment to social justice.”
He emphasized that “every leader at Einstein and Montefiore has a duty to support the attainment of our mutual goals to provide the best care, produce the best science and train the best future physicians and scientists—a task that can be accomplished only with a highly diverse and inclusive institutional climate.”
Dr. Cristina Gonzalez and Yvonne Ramirez co-organized the retreatDr. Cristina Gonzalez, associate professor of medicine, then led a series of workshops aimed at identifying key strengths and challenges at Einstein-Montefiore, and devising strategies for improving institutional processes, decision-making and relationships. To guide the group through the various exercises, she offered an overview of diversity and inclusion, discussed the importance of learning to create understanding of and awareness of unconscious bias, and shared anecdotes and videos demonstrating how such bias may be conveyed—such as micro-aggressions—along with suggestions for acknowledging and confronting them.
The day's activities concluded with Einstein leaders collaborating in small teams to identify specific goals related to the recruitment and mentoring of diverse faculty, staff and students, and steps to be taken to further improve Einstein's environment for learning and working.
“The work of the retreat will continue to support the Diversity and Inclusion Strategic Plan’s implementation and provide specific action items for review by the new Einstein Council for Diversity and Inclusion in Medicine,” said Yvonne Ramirez, Einstein’s vice president of human resources and co-organizer of the event. The council will have its inaugural meeting next month.
The retreat followed the recent reaffirmation by Dr. Tomaselli of Einstein's Diversity & Inclusion Strategic Plan, which was established under his predecessor, Dr. Allen M. Spiegel. For more information on the Diversity and Inclusion Strategic Plan for Excellence and other information about Einstein’s diversity and inclusion efforts and programming please visit http://www.einstein.yu.edu/diversity/.
Posted on: Wednesday, December 5, 2018