Advancing Diversity and Inclusion with IDEAL IT
As Stanford CIO Steve Gallagher puts it, University IT (UIT) is “embracing the vision and taking action” with the launch of the new IDEAL IT program this month.
IDEAL IT — which directly supports the Stanford Presidential IDEAL initiative — is a multi-faceted program designed to advance inclusion, diversity, equity, and access in UIT and the Stanford IT community.
“Our goal is to recruit, retain, and develop extraordinary people in our IT community at Stanford,” Gallagher said. “Foundational to that is fostering a diverse and inclusive environment where talented staff can thrive.”
Sponsored by UIT leadership and supported by Stanford’s CIO Council, IDEAL IT currently consists of four sub-programs, with more to be added down the road. Two of the sub-programs are being piloted in UIT before rolling out on a broad scale, and two are university-wide right out of the gate.
Overview of IDEAL IT sub-programs
Neurodiversity at Stanford (UIT pilot)
As the first Stanford organization to pilot this program, UIT will hire two to three neurodiverse individuals in October for one year fixed-term positions.
To prepare for this pilot, a UIT task team partnered with University Human Resources, the Stanford Neurodiversity Project (a special initiative of the Stanford Department of Psychiatry), and Neurodiversity Pathways at Goodwill of Silicon Valley to create a program framework, documentation, processes, and policies. These will not only be utilized throughout the UIT pilot, but also may be leveraged by other campus organizations who will participate in the pilot down the road.
Stanford Women in Technology (Stanford WIT)
Stanford WIT is a new university-wide affinity group for women, non-binary people, and allies of all genders. While primarily aimed at university, SLAC, and Stanford Medicine staff who work or have an interest in technology roles, the community also welcomes faculty and students who are interested in participating.
Through monthly meetings, networking, workshops, guest speakers and more, Stanford WIT aims to increase representation of women in technical roles and in the talent and leadership pipeline at Stanford. It also aims to equip participants with the skills and competencies needed to ensure they are prepared for their next roles.
The group is sponsored by CIO Council members Megan Clarke, CIO of the Graduate School of Business, and Ruth Marinshaw, CTO of Research Computing.
“Stanford WIT is an opportunity to build a vibrant community for women in technology across campus,” Marinshaw said. “My hope is that we can inspire and learn from each other, and increase opportunities for personal and professional growth.”
The inaugural Stanford WIT meeting is scheduled on Sept. 27 and will feature guest speaker Laura Patterson, recently retired CIO of the University of Michigan. The meeting will also provide context setting for Stanford WIT, an overview of the program charter, and networking.
Year Up Internship Program (UIT pilot)
The Year Up Internship Program is a partnership between UIT and Year Up, an organization that works with young adults from underprivileged and economically disadvantaged communities.
The UIT pilot will involve recruiting and hiring interns from Year Up to work on the UIT Service Desk team and potentially with other UIT workgroups. Preparations for this pilot are underway and it will officially kick off in January 2019.
IDEAL IT Foundations
IDEAL IT Foundations is a sub-program that manages and supports overall communication, strategic planning, advocacy, and advisory processes for the IDEAL IT program.
With a key focus on creating and measuring impact, diversifying recruitment, and increasing overall cultural awareness in the IT community, IDEAL IT Foundations seeks to support all broadly defined dimensions of diversity including:
- Sexual orientation
- Physical condition/appearance
- Socioeconomic status
- And more.
Share your ideas
The IDEAL IT program design includes an “innovation lab,” called IDEAL IT Opportunities. It is currently an undefined space for to-be-determined pilots and fast prototypes that may eventually be added to the IDEAL IT program.
To that end, if you have ideas and feedback about what else we can do to make the IT community at Stanford a better, more diverse and inclusive place to work, please share your thoughts with us.