Marquette looking to get 30% campus participation in climate survey

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Marquette looking to get 30% campus participation in climate survey

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Marquette needs 30 percent of campus to complete its newly released survey study by Friday to accurately evaluate its campus climate, and its only about halfway to the minimum response goal.

The study, opened Feb. 3, was designed to assess the climate of diversity and inclusiveness with regards to race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity and religious affiliation. To encourage students to take the survey, Marquette is drawing five participant names to win $300 in MarquetteCASH.

“This has been a long time in the making,” said William Welburn, a member of the climate study team and associate provost for diversity and inclusion. “Studying the campus climate for students and employees is pretty much a standard practice for colleges and universities across the country. Our consultant, Dr. Susan Rankin, has conducted at least 120 studies of colleges and universities large and small, so the idea for the survey came from the standard practices in higher education.”

Susan Rankin of Rankin & Associates Consulting is serving as the outside consultant for the climate survey and reports directly to the Climate Study Working Group, chaired by Welburn and is made up of a mix of students, faculty and staff.

This committee, in consultation with Rankin, will be solely responsible for the development, implementation and interpretation of the survey and its results, according the survey informational page.

“Once Rankin does her final evaluation she gives a set of recommendations and they cannot be ignored,” said Esther Aviles, chair of the Marquette Student Government Committee on Diversity, Inclusion & Social Justice and freshman in the College of Arts & Sciences. “It is paramount to our integrity as a university for our administration to evaluate student experience regularly.”

Welburn said Rankin created the survey to fit Marquette’s needs through monthly conference calls with the Climate Study Working Group where each item in the survey was reviewed. She and her consultants met with several focus groups in the fall to identify themes relevant to Marquette.

“Dr. Rankin has been doing this for years, and she is widely known for her work in this area,” Welburn said. “We had the benefit of reviewing her work for the University of California system when we were considering hiring her from among possible options. It is a lengthy process to create the survey, meeting monthly with her and working during those in-between times to continue to identify and develop the survey.”

The final survey report will include an executive summary with a report narrative of the findings based on Rankin’s data analysis. These reports will provide summaries of the findings and identify data themes.

“It doesn’t matter whether you’ve experienced problems at Marquette or have thoroughly enjoyed your experience, completing the survey is critical,” Welburn said. “This is the first opportunity for everyone to share their experiences and observations about the milieu at Marquette. I would suspect that President Lovell and our university leadership will need this information to get to understand our campus better, to get a sense of what all of us are experience and what we’ve observed about Marquette. I am sure that you will see the results in decisions about the future of the university.”

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