equity, diversity & inclusion

Making CAPLA a leader in inclusive excellence.

Diverse students and faculty in CAPLA's Underwood Garden

The College of Architecture, Planning and Landscape Architecture is committed to equity, diversity and inclusion at all levels of the college.

We know there is still much work to do, but at CAPLA, we pledge real action.

In realization of the CAPLA Strategic Plan and in response to advocacy by students, alumni, faculty and staff, we commit to the measures addressed below to advance equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI) and will be tracking our progress here. We welcome your feedback.


Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Summaries

After consultation with CAPLA faculty, staff, students and alumni, we are undertaking the following measures to improve the accessibility, climate and resources of our CAPLA community:

Following on the ad hoc Committee on Diversity and Inclusive Excellence that worked to help formulate the Strategic Plan aspiration above, CAPLA has elevated EDI matters to the level of a standing CAPLA committee. The CAPLA Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Committee, with diverse faculty, student and staff members, is a clearinghouse for questions, needs and ideas with respect to improving CAPLA practices and culture.

In order to set goals in a deliberate and meaningful way, goals for which we can be accountable, we had to first establish baselines of circumstances. To this end, we gathered demographic information about students, faculty and staff, including place of origin, race/ethnicity, gender and first-generation student status. This data is being used to formulate new recruitment, admissions, student support and faculty hiring plans for the coming year and beyond. The data will be updated at least once per year.

Socioeconomic disparities in our country make it much harder for some students to complete college than others. Recognizing this, we have raised and continue to raise money and offer a portfolio of resources to provide as much ongoing and emergency financial support as possible to promising students with need, supporting them with respect to tuition and fees, technology needs and materials and supplies. We also seek a level playing field for faculty, so that all those whom we have hired, and thus invested in, in fact have the resources to do the research and teaching for which they were hired. These efforts include a partnership with the College of Engineering to provide grant support, prioritization of research needs on the part of tenure-track faculty and ongoing strategic investment in studio, lab and computer equipment to support instruction. Finally, the pandemic has concentrated our attention on matters of health and wellbeing and we have implemented proactive strategies to identify those in distress and intervene in a timely way.

Not all new CAPLA faculty or new CAPLA students (or even guests) know how a university and its units operate. That’s to be expected, but it is our obligation to inform, train and coach them about policies, procedures, best practices and—most important—our expectations for their conduct while they work or study here. Mandatory harassment prevention and implicit bias trainings have been implemented for administrators, faculty and staff and bystander intervention training will be offered annually to students. New guidelines for CAPLA guests are being drafted and will be implemented beginning in Fall 2021.

Even with training, conflicts sometimes occur. When they do, there should be clear guidelines for how to resolve them and evident points of contact with those administrators and staff who can help students and faculty. New conflict resolution guidelines are being drafted and will be implemented beginning in Fall 2021.

In a “loud” world, it is sometimes difficult to remain fully informed. However, the college takes seriously its opportunity to showcase the diversity of our students, faculty and staff and to highlight the variety of paths they have taken to CAPLA and that they take from CAPLA. Because there should be a plethora of paths to success, we want current and future students to find others like themselves in our mix—on our website, in our communications and in our classes. The effort to tell the stories of our community and our place in Arizona, the U.S. and the world is meant to build connections that enhance a sense of belonging and help mentor students and faculty to do productive work.


Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Initiatives: An Overview

Accomplishments

In 2020 and 2021, CAPLA completed the following EDI initiatives:

  1. Gathered and made available demographic data for all programs and cohorts—in order to benchmark and set goals for recruitment and retention of diverse students, faculty, staff and administrators.
  2. Joined the National Organization of Minority Architects and created a CAPLA-wide NOMA student chapter.
  3. Conducted mandatory implicit bias training for all faculty and staff and supervisory harassment prevention training for administrators.
  4. Created a new CAPLA EDI web section and dashboard including featured EDI narratives, a list of initiatives and indication of their implementation status, presentation of demographics, description of EDI committee membership, a list of associated student organizations and other resources.
  5. Developed an antiracism bibliography, making it and the listed texts available to the CAPLA community and using them to inform discussions to create a shared understanding of racism and other kinds of discrimination.

Continuing Progress

In 2021, we have made progress on the following EDI initiatives, which are still underway:

  1. Setting recruitment goals for local, state and regional recruitment of specific underrepresented populations in high schools and community colleges.
  2. Creating and maintaining a roster of students who are eligible for need-based graduate funding packages.
  3. Fundraising at different scales and in different ways—in order to help meet tuition, fee, technology and/or material costs for students in need.
  4. Requiring EDI training for all newly hired and ongoing faculty and staff supervisors in order to prevent harassment and discrimination, including micro-aggressions.
  5. Drafting guidelines for CAPLA guests and visitors in order to inform them about our culture and our expectations for professional and equitable interaction with members of the CAPLA community.
  6. Drafting a conflict resolution primer for students.
  7. Providing bystander intervention training for student ambassadors, student building monitors and leaders of student organizations.
  8. Creating regular forums for students, faculty, staff, administrators and alumni to discuss EDI issues in a safe space.
  9. Drafting a CAPLA EDI vision and EDI Committee mission.
  10. Working through the Drachman Institute to engage with diverse and underserved local communities.
  11. Developing website profiles, other coverage and opportunities to celebrate diverse contributions that showcase the diverse members of the CAPLA community.

Throughout 2021 and 2022, we’ll continue these efforts and undertake a number of other initiatives.

All CAPLA EDI Initiatives

Tracking CAPLA's EDI Initiatives within the Framework of the CAPLA Strategic Plan

The CAPLA Strategic Plan has five values, including Make CAPLA a Leader in Inclusive Excellence. This value's objectives are:

  1. Recruit, support and retain successful students who reflect the future of Arizona and the communities we serve.
  2. Reinforce an inclusive and respectful environment where all faculty, administrators, staff, students and outside partners contribute to CAPLA’s success.
  3. Prioritize wellbeing, equity and diversity as a central tenet of CAPLA culture in all our activities.

Click an objective below for a comprehensive table of goals, means, time frame, responsibility and status for each EDI initiative within the objective:

Objective 1: Recruit, support and retain successful students who reflect the future of Arizona and will be active contributors during school.

Goal (In order to...) Means (We plan to...) Time frame Responsibility STatus
1.1. Focus on under-served Arizona populations.
Benchmark and set goals for recruitment and retention of diverse students, faculty, staff and administrators. Gather and make available demographics data for all programs and cohorts. Fall 2020 and annually thereafter Associate Dean for Academic Affairs

COMPLETE

1.2. Embrace Hispanic-Serving Institution status.
Benchmark and set goals for recruitment and retention of diverse students, faculty, staff and administrators. Gather and make available demographics data for all programs and cohorts. Fall 2020 and annually thereafter Associate Dean for Academic Affairs

COMPLETE

Further diversify the student body. Set recruitment goals for local, state and regional recruitment of specific underrepresented populations in high schools and community colleges. Fall 2020 and annually thereafter Advising, Recruitment Team

ONGOING

1.3. Optimize graduate funding packages in order to be competitive.
Identify student need. Poll students about need; create and maintain a roster of students who have identified themselves as having need. Fall 2020 and ongoing FRAME Squad*, Advising Team

ONGOING

Meet tuition, fee, technology and/or material costs for needy students. Fundraise at different scales and in different ways. Fall 2020 and ongoing Dean, Director of Development, Director of Alumni Relations, School Directors

ONGOING

Support minority students. Join National Organization of Minority Architects and create student chapter. Fall 2020 School of Architecture Director

COMPLETE

Publicize the variety of careers possible with CAPLA degrees. Provide exposure to the work of varied alumni and regular summaries of trends among graduates from our disciplines nationwide Fall 2021 and ongoing Director of Alumni Relations

ONGOING

1.4. Provide GTA/GRA orientation, training and exit surveys.
Prevent implicit bias in working relationships with students and colleagues. Provide mandatory implicit bias training for faculty and staff. Fall 2020 and annually thereafter Dean, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs

ONGOING

1.5. Support students from first contact to launch.
Provide mentorship to diverse students. Inform faculty about how to serve as informal mentors. Fall 2021 and ongoing Associate Dean for Academic Affairs

NOT YET STARTED

Encourage peer mentoring among students. Identify and train CAPLA Student Ambassadors, members of student organizations and other student volunteers to identify peers in distress or need and support them proactively. Fall 2021 and ongoing FRAME Squad*

NOT YET STARTED

Mentor students on self-representation and networking skills. Engage alumni in a mentor network and develop programming in which they explain how they have succeeded Fall 2021 and ongoing Director of Alumni Relations

NOT YET STARTED

Provide students with an easy means of reporting problems or concerns. Adopt or develop a student app. Fall 2021 Director of Marketing and Communications

NOT YET STARTED

* FRAME Squad includes advisors, recruiters, academic affairs, development, alumni, marketing and communications and school representatives.

Objective 2: Reinforce an inclusive and respectful environment where all contribute to CAPLA success.

Goal (In order to:) Means (We plan to:) Time Frame Responsibility Status
2.1. Provide cultural competency training for faculty and staff.
Mentor faculty with respect to policies and best practices for EDI. Require new faculty to participate in a one-semester CAPLA Teaching Academy and encourage ongoing participation by continuing faculty. Spring 2021 and annually thereafter Associate Dean of Academic Affairs

NOT YET STARTED

Prevent harassment and discrimination, including micro-aggressions. Require EDI training for all newly hired and ongoing faculty and staff supervisors. Fall 2020 for new hires and existing supervisors; every two years thereafter Dean

ONGOING

Inform CAPLA guests and visitors about our culture and our expectations. Draft Guest and Visitor guidelines. Fall 2021 and reviewed annually thereafter Associate Dean of Academic Affairs, Faculty

IN PROGRESS

2.2. Recruit diverse faculty.
Diversify faculty. Create faculty hiring plans. Spring and Fall 2021 Dean, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Associate Dean for Research, Directors, Faculty

IN PROGRESS

2.3. Provide new student, faculty and staff orientations to CAPLA culture.
Inform students about conflict resolution processes. Draft a Conflict Resolution primer. Fall 2020 and reviewed annually thereafter Associate Dean of Academic Affairs

IN PROGRESS

Prevent student-on-student harassment. Develop student bias training to be embedded in a required course in each degree program. Spring 2022 Associate Dean of Academic Affairs, Faculty

NOT YET STARTED

Train students to intervene in student conflicts. Provide bystander Intervention training for Student Ambassadors and leaders of student organizations. Spring 2021 and annually each fall thereafter FRAME Squad*

ONGOING

2.4. Acknowledge the history of diverse groups and their contributions to CAPLA's disciplines.
Include coverage of diverse contributions to and systemic racism and other discrimination in the built environment, its professions and our academic disciplines. Review CAPLA courses and degree programs for EDI coverage and increase if missing or minimal. Spring 2021 and reviewed every third year thereafter Associate Dean of Academic Affairs, Directors, Staff

ONGOING

Create a shared understanding of racism and other kinds of discrimination. Develop an antiracism bibliography, make it and the listed texts available to the CAPLA community and use shared readings to inform discussions. Fall 2020 and reviewed annually thereafter Associate Dean of Academic Affairs, EDI Committee

COMPLETE

Diversify course content. Provide pointers for development of EDI content in CAPLA courses and degree programs. Summer 2021 Associate Dean of Academic Affairs, Faculty

NOT YET STARTED

* FRAME Squad includes advisors, recruiters, academic affairs, development, alumni, marketing and communications and school representatives.

Objective 3: Prioritize wellbeing, equity and diversity as a central tenet of CAPLA culture.

Goal (In order to:) Means (We plan to:) Time Frame Responsibility Status
3.1. Benchmark with peer institutions, seeking opportunities to improve practices and cultures.
Discuss EDI issues. Create regular fora for students, faculty, staff, administrators and alumni. Fall 2020 and ongoing Dean, Associate Dean of Academic Affairs

ONGOING

Draft a CAPLA EDI vision. Define "equity, diversity and inclusion" for CAPLA. Fall 2020 - 2021 EDI Committee

IN PROGRESS

Engage with diverse and underserved local communities. Work through the Drachman Institute to build community relationships. Fall 2020 and ongoing Associate Dean for Research

ONGOING

3.2. Create inclusive marketing and promotional materials.  
Showcase the diverse members of the CAPLA community. Develop website profiles, other coverage and opportunities to celebrate diverse contributions. Fall 2020 and ongoing Director of Marketing and Communications

ONGOING

3.3. Create diversity and inclusion assessment.
See 1.1 and 1.2 above.      

ONGOING

3.4. Ensure ADD compliance.
See 1.5 above.      

NOT YET STARTED

Resources on Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and the Built Environment

A bibliographical guide courtesy of University Libraries that includes an introduction plus publication resources in the following sections: Societal Systems and Structures of (In)Equity, Teaching/Education, Architecture and Cities.

View EDI and the Built Environment Resources

Profiles of CAPLA's Diverse Community

While statistical information is useful for seeing the whole of our community in the abstract, we recognize that each member is an individual with their own story. Here are the stories of a few of our students, faculty and alumni:

View All Student, Faculty and Alumni Profiles

 


Faculty, Staff & Student Demographics

The purpose of gathering and presenting demographic information is 1) to enable us to see the actual makeup of CAPLA at specific moments in time, 2) to undertake comparative analysis of the composition of the college over time and with other relevant entities and institutions, and 3) to make data-informed decisions about goals and means for change in the future. 

CAPLA faculty, staff and student demographic data is presented here in comparison to the University of Arizona and State of Arizona. Though the data presents a snapshot of the racial/ethnic and gender makeup of the college, it tells only a part of the story of who CAPLA is—and who we can become. Be sure to view our stories, profiles and projects and other work to gain a broader picture of the wide range of people who make up the college.

View race/ethnicity and gender for CAPLA faculty, staff and students:

CAPLA Faculty by Race/Ethnicity
Compared to UArizona and State of Arizona, Fall 2020*

 

Race/Ethnicity CAPLA UArizona Arizona Residents
American Indian or Alaska Native 0% 1.9% 5.3%
Asian 6.7% 12.2% 3.7%
Black or African American 1.7% 2.5% 5.2%
Hispanic or Latinx 8.3% 9.7% 31.7%
International 5%    
Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander 0% 0.2% 0.3%
Not Reported 9%    
White 66.7% 74.6% 54.1%

CAPLA Faculty by Gender
Compared to UArizona and State of Arizona, Fall 2020*

Gender CAPLA UArizona Arizona Residents
Female 48.3% 44.4% 50.3%
Male 51.7% 55.6% 49.7%

* Arizona resident data is from July 2019 and includes residents of all ages.

CAPLA Staff by Race/Ethnicity
Compared to UArizona and State of Arizona, Fall 2020*

  

Race/Ethnicity CAPLA UArizona Classified Staff** UArizona Other Appointed** Arizona Residents
American Indian or Alaska Native 0% 3.7% 3.8% 5.3%
Asian 0% 4.9% 8.0% 3.7%
Black or African American 0% 3.3% 3.7% 5.2%
Hispanic or Latinx 24.2% 41.1% 26.9% 31.7%
Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander 0.5% 0.6% 0.6% 0.3%
Not Reported 3%      
White 72.7% 57.7% 73.8% 54.1%

CAPLA Staff by Gender
Compared to UArizona and State of Arizona, Fall 2020*

Gender CAPLA UArizona Classified Staff** UArizona Other Appointed** Arizona Residents
Female 51.5% 51.2% 60.8% 50.3%
Male 48.5% 48.8% 39.2% 49.7%

* Arizona resident data is from July 2019 and includes residents of all ages.
** Percentages exceed 100% due to selection of multiple races/ethnicities. UArizona data does not include administrators.

All CAPLA Students by Race/Ethnicity
Compared to UArizona and State of Arizona, Fall 2020*

  

Reported Race /Ethnicity CAPLA UArizona** Arizona Residents
American Indian or Alaska Native 3.1% 3.3% 5.3%
Asian 6.4% 9.9% 3.7%
Black or African American 4.5% 6.1% 5.2%
Hispanic or Latinx 24.1% 26.2% 31.7%
International 9.9% 6.5%  
Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander 0.6% 0.8% 0.3%
Not reported 5.7%    
White 45.7% 63.7% 54.1%

All CAPLA Students by Gender
Compared to UArizona and State of Arizona, Fall 2020*

Gender CAPLA UArizona Arizona Residents
Female 44.9% 55.0% 50.3%
Male 55.1% 45.0% 49.7%

* Arizona resident data is from July 2019 and includes residents of all ages.
** UArizona student race/ethnicity categories are based on 'Inclusive Race/Ethnicity'; therefore, percentages exceed 100%.


Undergraduate CAPLA Students by Race/Ethnicity
Compared to UArizona and State of Arizona, Fall 2020*

  

Reported Race/Ethnicity CAPLA UArizona** Arizona Residents
American Indian or Alaska Native 3.7% 3.2% 5.3%
Asian 6.7% 9.4% 3.7%
Black or African American 4.2% 6.5% 5.2%
Hispanic or Latinx 26.2% 28.3% 31.7%
International 8.6% 4.6%  
Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander 0.6% 0.9% 0.3%
Not reported 5.1%    
White 44.9% 64.9% 54.1%

Undergraduate CAPLA Students by Gender
Compared to UArizona and State of Arizona, Fall 2020*

Gender CAPLA UArizona Arizona Residents
Female 45.5% 55.0% 50.3%
Male 54.5% 45.0% 49.7%

* Arizona resident data is from July 2019 and includes residents of all ages.
** UArizona student race/ethnicity categories are based on 'Inclusive Race/Ethnicity'; therefore, percentages exceed 100%.


Graduate CAPLA Students by Race/Ethnicity
Compared to UArizona and State of Arizona, Fall 2020*

  

Reported Race/Ethnicity CAPLA UArizona** Arizona Residents
American Indian or Alaska Native 0.7% 3.9% 5.3%
Asian 4.8% 11.8% 3.7%
Black or African American 6.2% 5.0% 5.2%
Hispanic or Latinx 15.2% 18.9% 31.7%
International 15.2% 13.1%  
Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander 0.7% 0.7% 0.3%
Not reported 8.3%    
White 49.0% 59.4% 54.1%

Graduate CAPLA Students by Gender
Compared to UArizona and State of Arizona, Fall 2020*

Gender CAPLA UArizona Arizona Residents
Female 42.1% 55.0% 50.3%
Male 57.9% 45.0% 49.7%

* Arizona resident data is from July 2019 and includes residents of all ages.
** UArizona student race/ethnicity categories are based on 'Inclusive Race/Ethnicity'; therefore, percentages exceed 100%.

Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Committee

The CAPLA Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Committee is comprised of faculty, staff and students whose goal is to help the college meet its core value of being a leader in inclusive excellence.

Learn More and View Committee Members

Student Organizations

CAPLA's student organizations strive to promote equity, diversity and inclusion among membership and in their activities. Student organizations with a particular focus on diversity and inclusion include:

CAPLA International Students Club (ISC)
ISC is dedicated to facilitating communication between students and faculty and promoting a friendly environment for all CAPLA students while providing them with the opportunity of finding a home away from home.

NOMA: National Organization of Minority Architects Arizona Student Chapter
NOMA is a student organization with a mission to create a unified community within CAPLA, to serve as an increasingly influential voice in minimizing the effects of discrimination and to promote the voice and work of minority design and built environment students for the betterment of our community.

Puente
Puente is the Hispanic student organization of CAPLA. Hispanic and other students are always welcome.

Women in Architecture Society (WIAS)
WIAS focuses on the support and positive representation of women in architecture and other, related design fields. Their goal is to empower women and provide advice and guidance as they go through school and the profession.

CAPLA EDI News & Headlines

Tucson 2050 public presentation

UArizona Architecture Students Design a More Sustainable Tucson Thanks to CAPLA Partnership with GLHN

Since 2017, GLHN Architects & Engineers has sponsored and provided technical advising on four architecture studios designed to craft a more sustainable Tucson by the year 2050. This year, the focus turns to urban food systems.

Irene Pineda in the Underwood Sonoran Garden

Accessibility for All: Irene Pineda ’22 MLA

Master of Landscape Architecture student Irene Pineda is from La Puente, California, located 20 miles east of downtown Los Angeles. She earned her BA in Communicative Disorders from San Francisco State University and served as a public school teacher before falling in love with the Sonoran Desert and joining the MLA program.

Angela Watson

CAPLA Futures Council Member Angela Watson Named President and CEO of Shepley Bulfinch

Shepley Bulfinch, a national architecture firm known for design excellence and innovation, has announced the appointment of Angela Watson FAIA to president and CEO. Watson is a long-time principal and design leader at the firm, as well as chair of the board. She has served on the CAPLA Futures Council, a multi-perspective advisory board to the CAPLA dean, since its inception in February 2019.

View All CAPLA EDI News & Headlines

 


Provide Feedback

We welcome your feedback on our equity, diversity and inclusion initiatives and resources, and you may leave a response—which will be shared with the associate dean for academic affairs and other CAPLA faculty or staff as appropriate—with your contact information or anonymously. Thank you.