It seems fitting to celebrate inclusive and united as two of the values that serve as the foundation for the mission statement of Neumont College of Computer Science. “Improving lives through education,” lends itself to being inclusive and united. As LeeAnn Prince, director of student affairs, explained, “They really go hand-in-hand. Inclusiveness is not about accepting where we are the same, it’s about celebrating what makes us unique and ultimately understanding that by working together, we can accomplish exponentially more than by working alone.”
Prince says part of her role at Neumont is to help foster a culture of respect that welcomes differences and celebrates diversity. “We should embrace the individuality and unique attributes of others, and that happens when we seek first to understand and then to be understood. Discussion is really the key.”
An important tenant of her job is to ensure that all voices are heard at every level of our institution, and works with Neumont’s various publics to develop the most effective channels and utilize best-practices for open and honest communication. “It can be something as simple as an open door, or even just a suggestion box,” she says, noting the new addition outside her office where the Neumont community (students, staff and faculty) can leave comments, suggestions and questions they’d like addressed.
In essence, inclusivity is not something that is ever wholly achieved; it is an iterative process. And it is through this process, recognizing the strengths and value of one another that we ultimately become united. At Neumont, students and graduates can have a positive impact on the world by leveraging the technical, career, and life skills gleaned at Neumont. Staff, faculty and administration are steadfast and unyielding in their passion to enhance the life of every student to help magnify their potential.
Ultimately, it’s not that Neumont or it’s people are perfect in embodying our new values and mission statement; but as Neumont president Aaron Reed, Ed.D. explained, “they serve to focus on what we believe is most important: making a positive impact on our students, essentially, improving lives through education.”