Mission & Vision


The A&S Office of International, Diversity, and Engagement Programs (IDEP) was established in July 2009 when the Office of International Programs was combined with A&S Diversity and Outreach. IDEP’s mission is to support the College in its efforts to transform the teaching, learning, and working environment into one of full inclusion and equity for all, to promote and advance the value of global citizenship, and to develop and sustain outreach programs that empower the community and build knowledge while integrating scholarship with real life experience.

To this end IDEP coordinates faculty-led study abroad programs and facilitates faculty and student international exchanges, joint research and joint publications. We offer programs, workshops, and seminars aimed at increasing cultural competency and developing a campus climate that respects the full range of human diversity. We collaborate with community organizations to identify areas of need that can be addressed with the support of human and financial resources from the College of Arts and Sciences with particular focus on linking students, faculty, and staff as respectful partners in community development efforts.


We see true intellectual and creative freedom as impossible without exposure to and respect for diverse perspectives and experiences. Our goal by 2020 is to be an active partner with other A&S units in providing equal access to the services, opportunities, and resources necessary and desirable for a truly excellent education; a healthy, thriving, and inclusive work environment; and full, responsive and respectful engagement with our surrounding community both home and abroad.

Faculty, students, staff, and community members are aware that IDOP is ready, willing, and able to provide professional development, advice, and mentoring on issues of diversity, inclusion, and cultural humility, as well as a full range of interventions. They are supported by supervisors in their efforts to take advantage of opportunities to improve their respective study and work environments.

IDEP is a resource to facilitate joint research, publications, and exchanges with overseas partners. A full or partially funded international experience is part of the education of every A&S student whether students take a short-term study abroad, engage in a semester or full-year exchange, or take an online course with students and/or faculty from one of our overseas partner institutions. A&S staff and community partners share knowledge and gain expertise through international collaborations. The College owns a large and well-appointed international residence that provides lodging from one week to one year for a number of visiting faculty, graduate students, and/or administrators.

The College is home to many outstanding and well-funded community based programs that function in partnership with community organizations and serve diverse audiences including Jefferson County Public Schools. The Saturday Academy has become a permanent community-based Institute for the Study and Preservation of African World History and Culture.