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UAH to launch new 'Inclusive Excellence Certificate Program'

The 15 module course aims to create a foundation on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion topics.
Credit: Michael Mercier | UAH
UAH PRIDE fair celebrating diversity.

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — A new certificate program is coming to UAH! The Office of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (ODEI) at The University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH) announced the launch of the UAH Inclusive Excellence Certificate Program. The initiative provides an online course that supports Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) training and awareness at no cost to the entire UAH community.

There are 15 modules to complete the full certificate, which are organized into three branches: Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. Each module includes a recorded lecture, a 'Speak Your Truth' video, and additional resources/information, as well as a number of self-reflection exercises or learning assignments. Completion of the full certificate is eligible for 3.0 Continuing Education Unit (CEU) credits.

“Modules under the Diversity branch aim to provide a basic foundation of DEI topics, including biases and stereotypes, intercultural competency, and effective allyship,” explains Katie Greene, an education & resource specialist in the UAH ODEI.

“The Equity branch provides modules focused on systems of oppression that prevent equality and create barriers to access for various social identity groups,” said Greene, "And finally, the modules in the Inclusion branch provide an opportunity to learn more about many prevalent social identity groups found on our campus, including Gender and Sexual Minorities (GSM), different age cohorts, religion and immigration.”

The idea for the program began as a development project for Greene in late 2017.

Greene said the project is designed specifically to “help members of the UAH community develop their intercultural competency skills to increase inclusive excellence in and outside of the classroom." 

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DEI lessons were soon integrated into the Orientation Leader (OL) training & development curriculum, while Greene advocated for a DEI exercise at New Student Orientation. After joining the ODEI in late 2020, Greene realized this was an opportunity to roll out the idea on a larger scale. The course took over a year to develop and was opened to beta testers in Spring 2022.

Greene also sees a number of ways UAH will be impacted by the program.

“The anticipated impact of the UAH Inclusive Excellence program is two-fold,” Greene said, “One, to present an opportunity to learn more about social identities and the systems of oppression they may face, and two, by encouraging a shift in campus culture."

"Our growing population is more diverse than ever and all of us, no matter our position or capacity on campus, need to develop intercultural competency skills." Greene said, "By learning more about DEI topics and practicing self-awareness, we can start having more constructive conversations about how to embody inclusive excellence in all that we do on campus.”

Registration for the course can be found through the College of Professional Studies registration platform. Learners have 10 months to complete the course upon registration. There are no associated fees, and participants who complete the modules within the timeframe are presented with an official certificate. For more information, please visit UAH Inclusive Excellence Certificate Program.

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