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Diversity, Equity and Inclusive Excellence

Our Commitment

A Message on Inclusive Excellence from the Dean and Associate Dean of the University Libraries

Grounded in the University’s Catholic and Marianist mission and its commitment to diversity, equity and inclusive excellence, the University Libraries strive to be a place where all members of our communities feel a sense of belonging and ownership. While the University Libraries’ vision is to be the intellectual fulcrum of the University, we know we cannot truly realize that vision if we are not intentionally diverse, inclusive and working actively toward equity and social justice. Guiding our work is the 2021-2024 University Libraries Plan for Inclusive Excellence, which was created with broad input from our campus community. 

Our plan is more than words on a page; we activate our values throughout our various areas of work. Some of our accomplishments include: 

  • Driven by curricular and cocurricular changes, expanding our collections to highlight and  include more resources by and about underrepresented communities
  • Ensuring our physical and virtual spaces are welcoming and accessible
  • Developing programs that spotlight the experiences of underrepresented and marginalized communities, including a program on the history of funk music in Dayton and a panel on the history of the LGBTQ+ student community at UD
  • Surfacing the stories of marginalized and historically underrepresented members of our  university community
  • Providing an annual yearlong internship experience through the OhioLINK Luminaries program, offering opportunities for underrepresented students to connect their passions to possible careers in libraries and archives.

The Libraries received national recognition in 2024 from Insight Into Diversity magazine for achievements to support diversity, equity and inclusion, receiving the publication’s inaugural LEAD Award, short for Library Excellence in Access and Diversity. However, our work is unfinished. We recognize that striving for greater equity and inclusion is an ongoing process. The next phase of strategic planning for inclusive excellence in the Libraries will focus on deepening the efforts we have started, using data around student success and belonging to help us refine our focus.

We invite you to explore the ways we are demonstrating our ongoing commitment to inclusive excellence.

Matt Shaw, dean, and Ione T. Damasco, associate dean for inclusive excellence and organizational development

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LEAD Award Recipient

University of Dayton Libraries received a national award for its commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) from Insight Into Diversity magazine. The award highlights the Libraries' strategic DEI plan, which involves its workforce, collections, programming, exhibits, and physical and virtual spaces.

University Libraries Plan for Inclusive Excellence, 2021-24

Driven by our mission and vision, the Libraries are committed to a framework of inclusive excellence that informs every aspect of our work and our spaces, ensuring that all learners are welcome and empowered to succeed.

As defined by the University’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion, “Inclusive excellence requires a comprehensive, cohesive and collaborative alignment of infrastructure, resources and actions.” By identifying specific goals and objectives around these areas, the University Libraries Plan for Inclusive Excellence enables this alignment.

This plan serves as a road map to cultivate and sustain a culture of diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility across key areas of the Libraries: workforce; collections; environment; and engagement with the diverse communities we serve. Regular, transparent and ongoing assessment is a cornerstone of this plan. Developing, implementing and reporting various methods of assessment, including the incorporation of feedback from our diverse constituents, are essential tasks to ensure we are holding ourselves accountable to our stated values. Ongoing assessment also encourages us to be a flexible learning organization, adapting approaches as needed to ensure we are reaching our goals.

  • Strategic goal 1 (Workforce): Recruit, hire, retain and develop a diverse workforce that will contribute to inclusive excellence across the work of the Libraries.
  • Strategic goal 2 (Collections): Rectify historical practices of exclusion by collecting, preserving, digitizing, promoting and providing access to materials created by underserved and historically excluded communities and ensuring access to these materials by all University faculty, staff and students.
  • Strategic goal 3 (Environment): Ensure the Libraries’ virtual and physical spaces create a sense of belonging for all faculty, staff, students and visitors.
  • Strategic goal 4 (Engagement): Ensure that the Libraries’ curricular and cocurricular outreach and engagement activities support and/or complement the University’s anti-racist and diversity-focused curricular and cocurricular offerings.

University Libraries Diversity & Inclusion Team

The University Libraries Diversity and Inclusion Team (ULDIT) advances the mission of the Libraries by providing leadership, offering support and serving as a resource around diversity, equity and inclusion endeavors across all areas and for every unit of the Libraries, including but not limited to collections, professional development, programming, services, spaces and overall climate. Driven by our Catholic and Marianist social justice traditions, the ULDIT supports the Libraries’ efforts to meet diverse and changing user needs. The ULDIT also is a strategic resource for and partner with campus departments that create programming and other activities for the broader community exploring issues of diversity, equity and inclusion.

Email the University Libraries Diversity and Inclusion Committee at


Blogs by Libraries Faculty and Staff