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“The First Okayama University Diversity & Inclusion Seminar: Promotion of Diversity & Inclusion at Okayama University” held

June 11, 2019

On June 5, the Organization for Diversity Management held “The First Okayama University Diversity & Inclusion Seminar: Promotion of Diversity & Inclusion at Okayama University” in the large conference room in the building of the Graduate School of Natural Science and Technology on Tsushima Campus.

It was the first seminar organized for university executives, managerial staff and other teaching staff. This month, the university starts accepting students under the Critical Language Scholarship Program (CLS Program) sponsored by the U.S. Department of State. The seminar was organized in advance of this so the participants could renew their knowledge on and recognition of Diversity and Inclusion (D&I; accepting and utilizing diversity), learn about various measures and assistance provided by the university, and share current challenges and agendas for the future as a university-wide issue.

Lectures were presented on the theme of “Disability” by Professor YOKOI Hirofumi of the Institute of Global Human Resource Development (CLS Program Institute Director), Leader OKAMOTO Mutsumi of the Good Job Support Center, and Associate Professor HARADA Shin (Director of the Office for Students with Disabilities at the Center for Enrollment Management). They introduced practical programs implemented in the United States to promote D&I, and the current situation and challenges at Okayama University regarding employment of persons with disabilities and support for students with disabilities. A panel discussion on diversity-based organizational operation and other topics also took place, encouraging active exchange of opinions.

The event attracted approximately 140 participants, including President MAKINO Hirofumi, university executives and department leaders, as well as those who used the video conference system. At the Q&A session, they presented questions and opinions, including the following: “Can we directly ask for opinions from persons with disabilities?” and “I would like a seminar where we can obtain practical and specific handling skills.” Active discussions made the seminar a very productive one.

The Organization for Diversity Management will continue its efforts to spread and establish the idea of D&I widely within the university through promotional activities.

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