Students walking in front of gate

Equity and Inclusion

University Inclusivity Statement

A dedication to diversity, equity, and inclusion is at the heart of our mission. As a Catholic and Vincentian university, St. John’s is committed to institutionalizing practices of inclusive excellence to ensure that we welcome and celebrate the intrinsic worth of all members of our community.

We will become an even stronger University as we enhance equity at every level of our institution. As noted in our Vision Statement, our graduates will excel in the competencies and values required for leadership and service in a rapidly evolving world.

Office of Equity and Inclusion

Reporting to the Chief Diversity Officer, the Office of Equity and Inclusion encompasses the Equity and Inclusion Council, the Office of Multicultural Affairs, the Inclusivity Resource Center, Academic Center for Equity and Inclusion, and RESPECT.

Academic Center for Equity and Inclusion Logo

Academic Center for Equity and Inclusion

St. Augustine Building at Night

Equity and Inclusion Council

LGBTQ Pride Flag

The LGBTQ+ Center

Picture of the DAC tower

Office of Multicultural Affairs (OMA)

Students talking and walking together on campus


Students Sitting on Campus in the fall

Disability Services

Announcements and Updates

Over the past two years, St. John’s University has taken several steps to honor our pledge to promote antiracism and ensure that our community is a place of belonging and inclusion where all members feel welcome. As we continue to witness the senseless acts of injustice, racial hostility, and pain across our country, the sense of urgency and need to align all facets of St. John’s with our standing principles are ever the more urgent.

To that end, I am pleased to share that the Board of Trustees voted at its meeting on February 15—in recognition of the newly established Office of Equity and Inclusion—that a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Committee would be formed as part of its accountability structure. This group will be at the forefront of the Board’s ongoing efforts to promote antiracism and a diverse and inclusive University community.

We all know nothing much happens without leadership—and ensuring diverse, inclusive, and equitable practices is no different. In fact, leaders on these issues need to exemplify what is being asked of others: authenticity, courage, curiosity, humility, introspection, self-awareness, and vulnerability, to name a few characteristics. Rev. Brian J. Shanley, O.P., President, and William J. Janetschek ’84CBA, ’17HON, Board Chair, will visibly support this work and serve as members of the committee.

Chaired by Board member Tarik S. Turner ’98C, the DEI Committee is charged to

  1. support and monitor the University’s key strategic efforts related to advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion goals;
  2. advise the Board of Trustees about emerging issues and the activities and resources associated with meeting the University’s diversity, equity, and inclusion goals;
  3. oversee the development and implementation of educational programming related to racism—especially issues of structural or systemic racism in the United States—and its continuing effects within higher education and the University; and
  4. monitor the demographics and working conditions of employees; the enrollment and educational climate of students; and, at least annually, review reports on the demographics of University students, faculty, administrators, and staff.

The current members of the DEI Committee are

I look forward to advancing this important work on behalf of the University with the Board.

As many of you know, June is LGBTQIA+ Pride Month, commemorating the first Pride protest which was led outside the Stonewall Inn in New York in 1969.

There are a variety of ways to celebrate Pride this year, with many events resuming in person. For anyone looking to get involved in a meaningful way—from parades to 5ks to social action—the University’s Employee Assistance Program (EAP) has compiled a Pride Month 2022 Resource Guide as a helpful starting point.

In addition, a prerecorded webinar is available on the EAP member website, (company code: stjohns). Titled “#PrideIncluded: LGBTQIA+ Inclusivity and Equity,” the session encourages participants to explore their roles in promoting inclusion and acceptance in the community and the workplace.

As we celebrate Pride, we also acknowledge the challenges that the LGBTQIA+ community continues to face today. We encourage the LGBTQIA+ members of our St. John’s community to practice self-care and surround yourselves with people who love you, believe in you, cheer for you, and listen to you. However you choose to honor Pride Month, we hope your celebrations are safe and meaningful.

The Transgender Training Institute conducted an LGBTQ+ climate assessment. Read their final report online as well as the accompanying message from Rev. Brian J. Shanley, O.P.

In the Fall of 2020, the University announced the launch of formal Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) at St. John’s. ERGs are voluntary, employee-led groups that help to foster an equitable and inclusive workplace, as well as cultivate a greater sense of belonging. ERGs are open to all St. John’s University faculty, administrators, and staff. An ERG may form around a shared identity, a shared interest or concern, or a professional/career affiliation.

Preference in the initial launch will be shown to ERGs that support minoritized social identities in our workplace.  An ERG Proposal Form and Getting Started Guide, along with a comprehensive ERG Guidebook and other program resources, are available on St. John’s Connect. To learn more, login to St. John's Connect and click on Campus Resources. From the Resources header, click the "Employee Information" icon and then "Employee ERGs."

Employees who are interested in starting a group are encouraged to review the ERG resources, and then identify two coleaders to complete the required proposal information online. Should you have questions, a Human Resources representative can be reached at [email protected].

New Critical Race & Ethnic Studies Minor

Explore our new interdisciplinary minor

Upcoming Events

Friday, April 23, 2021 11 a.m. - 3 p.m.

Register for "Listen, Learn, and Act: Race and Law Enforcement Symposium" 

The St. John's University School of Law Alumni of Color Chapter is hosting a free symposium that will provide the law school community and the public in general an opportunity to Listen, Learn, and Act from community members, law enforcement, policy-makers, activists, and scholars.

Keynote Speaker: Ben Crump, Civil Rights Attorney CLE credits will be offered.


Session 1 (11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.)

LISTEN to the voices of those directly impacted by the role Race plays in the policing of Black and Brown communities.

  • Panelists: victims of police misconduct joined by Lt. Edwin Raymond, N.Y.P.D., City Council District 40 Candidate
  • Moderator: Kareem R. Vessup, Esq., Civil Rights Trial Attorney; Trial Counsel and Adjunct Professor of Law at St. John’s University School of Law

Session 2 (12:00 p.m.-1:00 p.m.)

LEARN as a diverse group of scholars and impact litigators, engage in an honest dialogue about the historical and legal precedent that has facilitated the marginalization of communities of color and allowed for the unequal policing and unjust treatment of these communities.

  • Panelists: Professor Fagan, Isidor and Seville Sulzbacher Professor of Law at Columbia Law School and Professor of Epidemiology at the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University; Omavi Shukur, Assistant Counsel at the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund
  • Moderator: Professor Cheryl Wade, Dean Harold F. McNiece Professor of Law at St. John’s University School of Law

Keynote (1:00 p.m.- 2:00 p.m.)

Ben Crump, Civil Rights Attorney

Session 3 (2:00 p.m.-3:00 p.m.)

ACT engage in a strategy session as we mobilize, community activists, politicians, and law enforcement to develop solutions that address the complexities of systemic racism and oppression within our criminal justice system.

  • Panelists: M. Quentin Williams, Founder and CEO of Dedication to Community(D2C), national nonprofit organization; Nick E. Smith, First Deputy Public Advocate for the City of New York, justice system policy expert; Jasmine Brown, Esq. of Law Office of Vincent Toomey, Civil Rights Law 50A attorney; Queenie Paniagua, Kings County District Attorney’s Office, Deputy Bureau Chief, Blue Zone, Trial Bureau II.
  • Moderator: Beth D. Do '21, Student at St. John’s University School of Law, Don H. Liu Scholar, Student Bar Association President

St. John's University Land Acknowledgement

St. John’s University occupies the ancestral lands of the Matinecock, Rockaway, Lenape, and Canarsie Peoples. 

We pay respect to their elders past and present.

Please take a moment to consider the many legacies of violence, displacement, migration, and settlement that bring us together here today. Please join us in giving voice to these truths at every opportunity.

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