Reaffirming Our Commitment to Support DEI Initiatives in Response to U.S. Supreme Court Affirmative Action Decision
The recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling against affirmative action in college and university admissions is a setback that affects our botanical community, the scientific enterprise, and the opportunity for diversity in STEM to flourish. It is also just one of several ways that diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives are under attack.
BSA reaffirms our strong commitment to diversity, equity, accessibility, and inclusion and support for our members. DEI is a key cornerstone of our scientific society and our strategic plan. As a professional scientific society, we are committed to removing barriers faced by historically excluded minorities and to improving, diversifying, strengthening, and empowering talent in the botanical fields.
Some of our ongoing efforts in this area include:
- Participating in the Root & Shoot RCN (https://rootandshoot.org/), an NSF-funded plant science research coordination network, working to address systematic inequalities within plant science organizations with efforts such as the inclusive conferences working group and bystander intervention training
- Expanding Participation in the Indigenous Voices program, a collaboration with the American Indian Science and Engineering Society to expand the participation of Indigenous scholars in the botanical sciences
- Recruiting and Supporting students for our Botany & Beyond: PLANTS program and Science Identity Workshops for undergraduates as well as providing workshops and conference experiences for tribal college and minority-serving institution educators through the Botany & Beyond Inclusive Teaching Initiative
- Financially supporting affinity and identity-based gatherings at Botany conference and through virtual gatherings to provide community and a safe, supportive environment
- Diversifying our editorial boards, pool of associate editors, reviewers, and authors for all of our publications
We are steadfast in our commitment to diversity and unflagging in our efforts to pursue an inclusive and welcoming discipline built on the elimination of racial inequality and injustice.
On behalf of BSA leadership,
Dr. Vivian Negron-Ortiz