ADVANCE Impacts during a Pandemic and Racial Unrest

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Lehigh ADVANCE, together with numerous campus offices, had a critical role listening and advocating for resources, policies, and programs to support historically marginalized faculty, including STEM women and Faculty of Color through one of the most difficult periods in our shared history- the COVID-19 pandemic and racial unrest.  Thanks to colleagues in the ODI&E offices and centers, CITL, Office of Research, Student Affairs, Faculty Senate, College Committees, and the Provost Office for their expertise and implementation tools. 

From the earliest weeks following the "pandemic-pivot," ADVANCE was aware the pandemic would expose and exacerbate existing inequities. It was imperative ADVANCE share emerging research and consensus reports with Lehigh's decision makers. It was also important that we keep our community as connected as possible through the remote work environment. Lastly, ADVANCE is situtated to support transformational thinking to create a better, more equitable, anti-racist, new normal, rather than come through such a trying time only to go back to the old normal.  Thus, engagement and professional development through ADVANCE Cafes, the Writing Accountability Groups, LU-WISE over Zooms, the workshops for faculty search committees and inclusive excellence in teaching and the orientations for new faculty and new department chairs all took place. In addition, ADVANCE created, hosted, advocated, informed, launched or otherwise guided the following programs, toolkit resources, statements, or policies, which are noteworthy.