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Office of Inclusion, Equity, and Diversity

COVID-19 Resources

The Office of Inclusion, Equity, and Diversity is Open and Available to Assist. You can reach us by telephone call, or we can set up a meeting via Zoom

We are here to help. For additional information and resources visit our COVID-19 Resources page

With the current transition of all courses moving online due to COVID-19, we know many of you may feel more disconnected. University resources and supports are available.

While our office is open and ready to help remotely, there are also additional federal and state resources available. You are not alone. 

Want to visit UTHSC? Schedule a tour

The Office of Inclusion, Equity, and Diversity serves the University of Tennessee Health Science Center employees, students, residents, fellows, post docs and others in the areas of affirmative action, equal employment opportunity and compliance, diversity and inclusion and education, learning and development. Staff members are in the office Monday through Friday from 8:15 am to 4:00 pm CDT, but can be reached by phone or email during University operating hours of 8:00 am to 5:00 pm CDT Monday through Friday. 

Mission and Vision

The Office of Inclusion, Equity and Diversity (OIED) supports the mission and strategic plan of UTHSC through efforts that cultivate a welcoming and inclusive learning and working environment enabling everyone to thrive.  Accomplished through close collaboration and partnerships with the campus communities in Memphis, Jackson, Nashville, Chattanooga, and Knoxville, OIED works to create an inclusive community that fosters an understanding and appreciation for diversity among our students, trainees, staff, faculty, and administrators. This is done in part by facilitating meaningful interactions between individuals from diverse cultures, social identities, values, beliefs, perspectives, and experiences. 

Reporting directly to the Chancellor, the Office of Inclusion, Equity, and Diversity addresses experiences across the university around feeling welcomed and valued, evaluates systems and processes that enable opportunities and growth, and shares best practices to attract and retain diverse talent. Inclined by the business case and social responsibility for diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging, the Office of Inclusion, Equity, and Diversity:

  • Coordinates, facilitates, and participates in the development and implementation of equal opportunity, nondiscrimination, and inclusion, equity, and diversity policies, procedures, and guidelines for UTHSC. 
  • Supports diversity and inclusion in UTHSC’s strategic map while leading and collaborating with various campus advisory bodies.  
  • Encourages and monitors progress in implementing diversity and inclusion initiatives. 
  • Organizes and manages multiple campus wide awards programs addressing diversity and inclusion and social justice.
  • Arranges, collaborates on, and participates in a variety of multicultural celebrations. 
  • Develops institutional and governmental reports including, but not limited to, the University's Affirmative Action Plans. 
  • Prepares and delivers learning opportunities and programming for all campus community members. 
  • Investigates and/or coordinates the handling of complaints of discrimination, bias incidents, discriminatory harassment, and grievances associated with accommodation requests (i.e., disability; religious). 
  • Coordinates and facilitates UTHSC’s accessibility compliance program.

Meet the Associate Vice Chancellor

Dr. Michael AlstonDr. Michael Alston, EdD, CCDP/AP, serves as the Associate Vice Chancellor for Inclusion, Equity, and Diversity and is the Title IX Coordinator for UTHSC. Learn more about Dr. Alston and his role.


Inclusion Defined

Inclusion describes the active, intentional, and ongoing engagement with diversity - in people, in the curriculum, in the co-curriculum, and in communities (e.g., academic, social, professional, clinical, research, service, and geographic) where individuals might connect. UTHSC commits to pursuing deliberate efforts to ensure that our campus is a place where differences are welcomed, different perspectives are respectfully heard, and every individual feels a sense of belonging. Shared power will be ensured by the presence of traditionally excluded individuals and/or groups into processes, activities, and decisions/policies. Building a critical mass of diverse groups and individuals on campus with a vibrant climate of inclusiveness, we will effectively leverage the resource.

Diversity Defined

Diversity is the wide variety of shared and different personal and group characteristics among individuals. UTHSC commits to affirming diversity, which is expressed in myriad forms, including race and ethnicity, gender and gender identity, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, language, culture, national origin, religious commitments, age, invisible and visible (dis)abilities, and political perspective. It means understanding that each individual is unique and recognizing our individual differences and similarities. 


Sep 25, 2023