In the interest of promoting open, respectful, and inclusive dialogue, the Faculty Senate approved the following statement on January 17, 2017:
Spartans embrace the opportunity to learn from the differences and perspectives others bring. We the faculty place the highest value on the free exchange of scholarly ideas and points of view, with the understanding that those are open to challenge. We take pride in the strength of our diversity and our ability to work together with respect and equality.
Each of Michigan State University's three core values—quality, inclusiveness, and connectivity—is foundational to its land-grant mission. Together they support higher education's cherished traditions of scholarly inquiry and robust debate with the expectation of civility and mutual respect in a diverse, engaged learning community.
MSU welcomes a full spectrum of experiences, viewpoints, and intellectual approaches because they enrich the conversation, even as they challenge us to think differently and grow. However, we believe that expressions and actions that demean individuals or groups compromise the environment for intellectual growth and undermine the social fabric on which the community is based.
As we move forward, we seek to maintain and defend the inclusive learning community that is MSU, and renew our commitment to MSU's core values.
The WorkLife Office supports this direction, and the idea that while academic rigor and intellectual discourse often occur in a context of disagreement, they need not be conducted disagreeably or disrespectfully. We encourage open and welcoming expression of ideas, for the purpose of deepening understanding. The WorkLife Office strive to support a positive work environment for all faculty and staff at MSU. Part of maintaining productive and effective work is to respectfully engage with our colleagues, students and members of the community and we appreciate the Faculty Senate taking the lead on encouraging such an environment.
The Faculty Senate statement can be found here: http://acadgov.msu.edu/faculty-statement-campus-climate-diversity-and-inclusion.