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Oglethorpe University

Undergraduate School

Mailing Address
4484 Peachtree Rd NE
Atlanta, Georgia 30319
(404) 364-8307
Email address
School Information
"Founded in 1835, Oglethorpe University unites a close-knit campus community with big-city culture and opportunities. Today, Oglethorpe enrolls 1,452 students, representing 31 states and 22 countries" (Source: Oglethorpe hosts a student to faculty ratio of 15 to 1. Its liberal arts campus is 100 acres large and welcomes 65 faculty members.
General Information
Oglethorpe created a DEI Task Force and appointed a president of DEI. Additionally, the university holds events related to DEI and also offers "training resources" to the campus community. See developments below:

Actions Taken

Admissions Policies
  • Starting during the 2021 admissions cycle, Oglethorpe adopted a test-optional policy for applicants, citing testing challenges due to COVID-19 and "the systemic issues of equity inherent in a reliance on standardized testing."
Anti-Racism, Bias, and Diversity Training
  • In July 2020, Oglethorpe created a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Task Force which will "work closely with Campus Life to audit current training resources for the upcoming semester and work to bring continuous diversity education to the Oglethorpe Community."
  • Oglethorpe's DEI office "enhances education and awareness of intercultural competency for faculty, staff, and students..." and "[a]ims to foster a campus environment that understands the role of inequalities in shaping our individual and collective identities and experiences."
Curriculum Changes and Requirements
  • In response to the racial justice protests of 2020, the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion stated that Oglethorpe is "committed to facilitating these conversations through diversifying the Oglethorpe Core." In addition to the university's "ongoing effort to diversify the Core," it has also introduced two courses that "explore racial inequality: WGS 290: White Fragility: Anti-Racism Activism and INT 290: Black Resilience and Response."
  • Oglethorpe outlines the strategic priorities from its 2022-2027 Strategic Plan which includes "[d]iversify[ing] the Oglethorpe curricula, including Core, to reflect our diverse community of learners."
Program and Research Funding
  • The mission of the Teaching and Learning Institute for Inclusive Innovation at Oglethorpe is to "enable faculty to teach in ways that are equitable, inclusive, innovative, and informed by scholarship on teaching and learning."
  • In August of 2023, the university announced that it received $100,000 in grant funding in support of 11 on-campus initiatives, several of which include DEI related initiatives and programs.
  • In November of 2022, Oglethorpe was named as one of fourteen institutions to receive the Howard Hughes Medical Institute's "inclusive excellence" grant ($8 million over six years awarded to a "Learning Community Cluster"). The Learning Community Cluster will "work to achieve HHMI’s stated purpose of fostering a learning community of college and university faculty and administrators who are engaged in the process of increasing their institution’s capacity for inclusion of all students, especially those who are underrepresented in the sciences."
  • On June 2, 2023, the university announced that a new endowment fund was created to "support students interested in museum studies." Students with "diverse backgrounds and experiences currently underrepresented in museum leadership roles" would be prioritized.
  • Oglethorpe hosts numerous events for DEI, including Friday Forums on Racial Injustice.
  • Oglethorpe appointed a President of DEI on February 9, 2021.
  • In February, 2021, Dr. Laura Renée Chandler was selected to be the inaugural Vice President of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at Oglethorpe.
  • Oglethorpe offers campus resources related to DEI, including access to "How to Be an Antiracist" by Ibram X. Kendi and "White Fragility" by Robin J. DiAngelo.
  • Oglethorpe has a Social Democrats club that serves to "push forward, not candidates, but socialist ideas and works." Its main values include being "anti-capitalism, anti-racism, and pro-feminism."
  • Oglethorpe's 2023-2024 course listings include "Race & Ethnicity in the United States," which is described as follows: "This course examines sociological theory on race and racism. It explores the social construction of race and ethnicity, explanations for racial and ethnic stratification, and the role that race plays within U.S. social institutions. It also addresses the social histories of several racial and ethnic groups in the U.S, addressing the experiences of immigrants, indigenous racial/ethnic groups, and those who were forcibly brought to the United States."
  • On May 25, 2023, the university announced that it would host a two-day workshop in order to "increase the sense of belonging and inclusivity for underrepresented students in STEM [Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics] fields."
Symbolic Actions
  • An account was created by "marginalized community members" on Instagram. This account vocalized a desire to address "systemic oppression" and "white supremacy" within the school.
  • On April 20, 2021, Oglethorpe released a statement saying, "Almost a year ago, the murder of George Floyd sparked an intense period of increased awareness and discussion about the crisis of race-based, specifically anti-Black, violence in America. We are still in a period of turmoil, as evidenced by the recent killings of Adam Toledo and Daunte Wright and the palpable tensions associated with testimony in the Derek Chauvin trial. At this moment, we, as senior leaders of Oglethorpe University, want to affirm our unwavering commitment to advancing racial equity and social justice." Alongside this statement, the university provided a related resource list.
  • On June 1, 2020, Oglethorpe released a statement saying, "It is with great humility and sadness that we reach out to you as protests unfold in the aftermath of the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery. These senseless deaths and the continued crisis of racism-fueled violence in America has caused immeasurable suffering and pain."
Last updated December 13th, 2023
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