Campus Climate Design Labs help turn ideas into action

Friday, October 9, 2015

Two Campus Climate Design Labs, held on Oct 6 and Oct 8, provided engaging spaces for members of the campus community to tap into their collective wisdom to support projects and actions that aim to make campus more welcoming and respectful. Participants considered 11 different projects ideas and the steps needed to move them forward.

Project ideas included:

  • Addressing size bias and body diversity
  • Supporting first generation students
  • Further empowering the cultural community collective
  • Improving how we respond to acts of bias and bullying
  • Increased interdepartmental collaboration between cross-cultural students
  • Family supportive and inclusive campus
  • How to build a culture of inclusion and smaller professional programs
  • Engaging students in conversations about standards before they are in trouble
  • Work to symbolically acknowledge lands and water within campus bounds as ancestral and present home of American Indian people
  • Workplace communication across cultures
  • Supporting graduate students as students, junior colleagues, employees, and family members.


Those who called topics left with new insights and solid ideas for next steps. Reflections about the labs included these thoughts:

  • Collective concern for positive change
  • Turn and open windows of opportunity
  • Big things start small
  • Be watchful for size bias
  • Look at things from the other side
  • Wealth of information and inspiration at the University
  • The power of shared work
  • Stand up, stand out, and step forward – others will follow
  • Takes courage to try and impact change
  • I found kindred spirits
  • It’s great that we are all talking about campus climate and not assuming all is well.

For photos from the labs, visit the Facebook event page.




"Perspectives" stories are the views and opinions of their authors and do not necessarily reflect any official position of the University of Minnesota.