Northwest Association of College & University Housing Officers

A Collection of Diversity Practices

One of the goals of the Diversity and Inclusion Committee is to highlight the work that is already being done within our region. Please continue to send highlights to diversity@nwacuho.org and our committee will continue to share those! Diversity work is on-going as we strive to make our residence halls home to students from all backgrounds. Our hope is that we continue to engage in conversations and connect institutions and people who are wanting to implement programs, services, or other good work being done. 


Gonzaga University, Housing and Residence Life

At Gonzaga University, we were approached by students to be a part of RA training regarding diversity and inclusion. We worked with three students to develop sessions that they believed might leave a greater impact on the importance of the RA role in the community, including a session where students described how living on-campus impacted their experiences of inclusion/exclusion.

Oregon State University, University Housing and Dining Services

University Housing & Dining Services at Oregon State University overhauled its assignment process for 2017-2018 to be more gender-inclusive, allowing for students to self-identify their gender from ten different options and participate in room selection and roommate matching based on their gender identity, not biological sex.  UHDS also expanded its restroom options across its entire system to include at least two gender-inclusive multi-stall restrooms in most residence halls on campus. As has always been our policy, residents are not limited to using a restroom on their floor, but can use the restroom that best fits their needs, regardless of what floor or wing they reside in.

Saint Martin’s University, Housing and Residence Life

In response to a desire for students to have more voice in the residence halls, Residence Life developed a student training which focused on educating students on different spaces in which social justice work occurs. This included teaching strategies on developing affinity, educational, and action-based spaces. From a programmatic perspective, Residence Life has also started initiatives partnering with different student-led cultural clubs on campus to bring programming into the residence halls.

University of Washington, Housing and Food Services

This year, in an effort to improve diverse staff retention, UW HFS Residence Life piloted a New Staff Orientation session on Diversity and Inclusion. The session was compiled based on feedback from the UW HFS department on what they wished they would have known and covered everything from student demographics and culture to affinity groups and professional staff resources on campus. The 2018 session will be improved based on participant feedback as we seek to give our staff the best foundation possible with diversity and inclusion work at University of Washington when starting their new roles.

Washington State University, Residence Life

We have worked with students and staff this year to update and try new social justice trainings and initiatives. Specifically WSU takes the Student Staff to camp for 3 days each year to specifically talk about identity and privilege, this 3 day experience is often the highlight of our training and gives specific tie to the value of social justice. This year WSU also changed our traditional Tunnel of Oppression program, through consultation with students a new name and process was decided.  Rebranding to “Rooms of Resistance” and making it activity oriented, this 40 minute experience exposed students to concepts around Immigration, Gender Identity, Sexual Assault, and Privilege. Continuing training with our professional staff is important too, and our staff common reading book this year is “On Being Included” by Sara Ahmed.  We will be reading and discussing the importance and history of inclusion on a university campus as a staff and exploring how we can have an impact.

The Diversity and Inclusion Committee would like to thank the following committee members for their contributions: Tiffany Firestone, Ashlee Norris, Benjamin Medeiros, Simone, Staley, and Michael Zangl. 

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