DEI - Frequently Asked Questions

How does the Diversity & Inclusion Council define diversity?

As defined by the SUNY Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Policy, diversity “can be broadly defined to include all aspects of human difference, including but not limited to, age, disability, race, ethnicity, gender, gender expression and identity, language heritage, learning style, national origin, sexual orientation, religion, socio-economic status, status as a veteran, and world-view.” To that end, the SUNY Old Westbury’s Diversity Strategic Plan is designed (1) ensure consistent services and support for all constituents of our campus community, (2) ensure that our student, faculty and staff adequately reflect New York State and Long Island demographics, and (3) ensure that our campus remains a welcoming and inclusive environment for all.

Why is Old Westbury addressing diversity?

The Diversity & Inclusion Council is an outgrowth of SUNY System’s Diversity Task Force.  The D&IC is the hub for ensuring that the goals of the Task Force are carried out on our campus. The Task Force has three large areas of focus including:

  1. undergraduate and graduate recruitment, admissions, retention, and graduation;
  2. recruitment, retention, and support of diverse faculty, staff, and administrators; and
  3. development and enhancement of a welcoming campus environment for all.

Is there a policy regarding discrimination and harassment?

Equal Opportunity: Access, Employment and Fair Treatment in the State University of New York

Who does Old Westbury's Diversity & Inclusion Council include?

Currently, OW's Diversity & Inclusion includes staff from various departments such as the Health Center, and First Year Experience, professors from both the graduate and undergraduate departments, and a handful of students. As some of our student members have graduated last spring, we are hoping to include alumni in our council as well.

What if I experienced harassment or discrimination, but want to remain anonymous?  

If you believe that you have experienced harassment or discrimination, please see the following links for key policies and procedures:

Who should I talk to if a situation made me feel uncomfortable, but I'm not sure if I'm being harassed or discriminated against? 

Old Westbury has a Psychological & Wellness Center located in the basement of the Student Union. The center is staffed with licensed psychologists, psychologists in training and a licensed psychiatrist. Help is available to all students. More information regarding OW's psychological services can be found here.

If you don't feel comfortable talking to a counselor, you are more than welcome to speak to your academic advisor, a professor, another staff member or the campus Ombuds (  if you feel comfortable in doing so.