Summer Update from the EDIB Taskforce

Monday, Aug 03, 2020
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Dear students, faculty, and staff,

As we approach the fall semester, we want to give you an update on the progress of our ongoing initiatives in equity, diversity, inclusion, and belonging (EDIB).

Firstly, we are so grateful for your commitment to and involvement in this work. We have received feedback and support from so many of you, including a widely shared Call to Action from the 2019-20 Juilliard Student Congress (JSC). The EDIB Taskforce has been meeting throughout the summer to act on this feedback, and we met with representatives from the JSC, Black Student Union, and students across divisions to further prioritize our work.

We would like to share updates on the three items from our June 6 correspondence.

1) Invite active participation from college students, alumni, and non-Taskforce faculty and staff and outline a communication plan to share the work of the Taskforce with the community on a regular basis.

  • We are developing two working groups—including college students, faculty, and staff—to support the EDIB Taskforce. We will share more information on the structure and participation guidelines in the coming weeks
    • Working Group A: Bias Reporting
    • Working Group B: Additional Trainings
  • Following the 2020-21 Juilliard Student Congress elections, the Taskforce will discuss opportunities for communication and feedback between the Taskforce and the JSC.
  • Top priorities include additional support services for students, bias response, and training for the community. Updates on these will follow, and the Taskforce also plans to share biannual progress reports.

2) Develop a broader range of options for reporting and resolution procedures for bias incidents, building upon Juilliard’s existing nondiscrimination and harassment policy and reporting mechanisms.

  • In collaboration with Camille Pajor, our bias response officer, we are continuing to develop bias reporting structures tied to our nondiscrimination and harassment policy, and we will institute a community listening tour in the fall.
  • Certain updates to the policy will be made by the start of the academic year, including clarifying the scope of the policy and definitions of prohibited behavior.
  • Deputies will be identified by September 2020 and will receive ongoing training. We are committed to assembling a group of deputies with a diverse range of backgrounds.

3) Increase ongoing EDIB and anti-racist training and learning opportunities for college students, faculty, and staff.

  • The initial required foundational EDIB workshop for staff and faculty has continued through the summer; to date, 82 percent of college faculty and staff have completed the workshop. In the fall, we hope to train the remaining staff and faculty, including Preparatory Division faculty, as well as explore a digital version of the training.
  • A team of co-facilitators is meeting this summer to discuss additional EDIB training tracks for faculty and staff. We are considering suggestions for additional trainings specific to departments, the workplace, and student life.
  • We have created the position of EDIB program manager within the Office of the President, for which a search will begin immediately. The program manager’s responsibilities will include facilitating EDIB training, collaborating with the Preparatory Division on recruitment efforts, and developing mechanisms for assessment.

In addition, Juilliard will be expanding counseling services for college students by hiring an additional counselor starting in fall 2020.

All of our divisions are participating in EDIB work. Here are some of their priorities:

  • The Dance Division is reexamining curriculum—particularly in the areas of dance history, Music Studies I & II, anatomy, and pedagogy—and will be focusing on strengthening community through group discussions with students and alumni, including a public, virtual Open House Day on August 1.
  • The Drama Division is developing guidelines for approaching material with racial content and beginning the year with a series of weekly workshops to advance EDIB fluency in classroom and rehearsal practices.
  • In the Music Division, the Studio Faculty Council is discussing ways in which the repertoire in performance curriculum can be more inclusive of BIPOC composers. This includes reviewing the school’s jury and audition requirements and developing a listening list of works by BIPOC composers that the studio faculty feel all students should know.
  • The Preparatory Division will continue its commitment to performing underrepresented composers on all large ensemble programs, creating a more inclusive academic curriculum, and examining the program’s jury and audition requirements.

There is still much work ahead. You can expect a biannual report on the EDIB progress from the Taskforce at the end of the fall semester. Visit our webpage to learn more about EDIB at Juilliard and the EDIB Taskforce.

Thank you for working with us to create a better, ever more inclusive Juilliard.


The EDIB Taskforce