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Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Policy

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Policy on Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Anti-Racism

OU Musical Theatre students perform in Songs for a New World
  1. We commit to the core principles of diversity, inclusion, equity, and anti-racism. We promote belonging by centering the work of artists and scholars in the Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) and Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, or Questioning (LGBTQ+) communities in productions, projects, assignments, and course materials.
  2. We explicitly disavow white supremacy and systemic racism, and reject implicit biases and complacency within higher education, the entertainment industry, and the School of Musical Theatre. We are a professional training program preparing artists for successful performance careers in an industry they will impact, improve, and reinvent.
  3. We provide anti-racism and DEI training for faculty, staff, and students. Guest artists who work with our students shall reflect our goals of diversity, equity, inclusion, and anti-racism.
  4. We prioritize the recruitment and hiring of qualified BIPOC faculty/staff to fill open positions so that the School better serves diverse communities.
  5. We create safe and transparent initiatives that encourage our community (students, faculty, and staff) members to provide feedback, including the Pay It Forward Alumni Panel.
  6. We annually review our student recruitment process to ensure that we are attracting a diverse, talented, well-qualified pool of applicants. We utilize our financial and technological resources for increased accessibility to the audition and admission process.
  7. We value a progressive and inclusive curriculum that fosters an environment of cultural agility within our community of students, faculty, and staff.
    • Our B.F.A. in Musical Theatre Performance curriculum receives ongoing and comprehensive review of all course objectives in order to move beyond white-centered narratives and ideals – including old norms around cis-gendered actors, body types, and character types
    • Central to this review is the contextualization and critique of bias within librettos and scores. It is vital to enrich learning experiences by examining a global aesthetic rather than relying on a Western cultural perspective.
    • Assimilation to whiteness is not a learning outcome.
  8. The education and training of our students promotes their intrinsic ethnocultural and/or gender expression.
  9. We partner with the University of Oklahoma Goddard Health Center, OU Health, The Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, University Vice President for Student Affairs, and Dean of Students in their work to improve Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion on campus.
OU Musical Theatre student Alyssa Watkins performs in Songs for a New World
OU Musical Theatre student Gonzalo Aburto de la Fuente performs in Songs for a New World

OUMT Diversity Committee

The OU Musical Theatre Diversity Committee is comprised of students, faculty, and staff, acting as “thought partners” who, when an incident is reported, can decide to address issues internally or take them up the ladder. The group’s mission (along with the mission of our DEI policy) is to create empathy.

We endeavor to cultivate an atmosphere of education, awareness and advocacy. This committee is charged with helping to cultivate an inclusive environment, confirming the values and norms for our classrooms.

Corrective action is intended to create better citizens, better versions of ourselves – rather than to punish. The committee will decide how each complaint is handled.

An incident reporting form can be found under student resources on the OU Musical Theatre website.