Stony Brook University’s Career Center held a Diversity Recruitment Town Hall on July 29 to provide a space for employers from across the country to share best practices around diversity and inclusion issues in university recruitment during the heightened state of racial injustice and Black Lives Matter movement. Before the start of the fall semester and fall recruiting season, the Career Center felt it was important to open up a dialogue with employers about the topic and to hear from them how Stony Brook can help support their efforts.
The Career Center at Stony Brook has been actively engaging employers in diversity recruitment activities for years. They have a variety of specific diversity programs to assist Stony Brook students and alumni with connecting to companies and organizations that value a diverse workplace. The Career Center Staff run specific diversity programming initiatives throughout the year, including their flagship Diversity Recruitment Networking Event which partners with diverse student groups on campus while connecting students to internship and job opportunities.
Part of the success of the diversity programs in the Career Center is a result of the relationship between the Employer Relations team and their employer partners, including the conversations they have with employers about diversity recruitment practices. The town hall on July 29 opened with Kimberly Joy Dixon, Director of Employer Engagement & Diversity Recruitment, speaking about fall recruitment and the diversity programs the Career Center offers to students and employers. The majority of the session consisted of breakout rooms where a facilitator from the Career Center asked questions and allowed the employer to share initiatives and ideas. Several of the specific topics discussed included how companies enhanced diversity and inclusion goals, how companies planned to create an inclusive culture through the recruitment process, and activities they were planning for the upcoming 2020/2021 recruiting season.
Participants found it extremely valuable to hear from employers about what they were doing to enhance their diversity and inclusion programs. Tanya Luddy and Emma Peck from Broadridge Financial Solutions shared that Broadridge is in the process of hiring a Chief Diversity Officer, which would be a new position for the company. Luddy also spoke about her interest in developing new ways to find diverse talent and connect more with diverse student groups on campus.
One topic that was heavily discussed in the breakout sessions was the importance of developing a diversity recruitment plan for changes to be successful. Employers also spoke about how important they felt it was to not only have diversity as part of their recruitment efforts but also to make sure the company culture and environment echoed that as well.
The session was a great opportunity for the Career Center to learn more about how companies and organizations were making changes to their recruitment strategies as a result of the #BlackLivesMatter movement. As the Career Center prepares for the fall recruitment season, important conversations with employers allow them to better support students looking for jobs and internships. Their goals to enhance their efforts around the career preparation of underrepresented students are possible because of their commitment to nurturing relationships with industry partners who are focused on diversity recruiting initiatives.
Companies and organizations that are interested in discussing their diversity recruitment strategy please schedule a meeting with Kimberly Joy Dixon.