All UMSL faculty, staff and students are encouraged to take the online campus climate survey. It will be available online through April 13. The survey will take only 20 to 30 minutes and must be completed in one sitting. No saving your answers and returning later. Complete it and you can win a prize. (Photo by Alicia Hottle)

What’s it like to be part of the UMSL environment? Is it warm, egalitarian and inviting? Or, is it not? Do you feel empowered and free, or not? What can make your campus life happier? Over the next two weeks, students, faculty and staff at the University of Missouri–St. Louis will be asked to complete a survey on the campus climate to answer those and other important questions.

UMSL’s survey will tell us how constituent groups feel about the campus climate and will enable us to improve the environment for learning, living and working here.

The survey is part of a larger climate project, a collaborative effort between, the Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity, the Chancellor’s Cultural Diversity Initiative and campus leaders, with Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla. UMSL engaged the expertise of Rankin and Associates, which has assisted campuses and organizations across the country.

“Within our campus community, we seek to create an environment characterized by equal access for all employees and students regardless of cultural differences, and where individuals are not just tolerated but valued,” said UMSL Chancellor Tom George. “A welcoming and inclusive climate is grounded in respect, nurtured by dialogue and evidenced by a pattern of civil interaction.”

George said the first step in creating such an environment is to assess the current climate in order to identify important issues and then to create ways for the institution to address them. That’s the role of the climate survey.

Deborah Burris, director of the Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity and UMSL’s chief diversity officer, has played a major role in planning the project.

“The campus climate survey will help us chart a course for the future,” Burris said. “The survey will give students, faculty and staff an opportunity to give voice to their experiences, openly and honestly. The data collected from these voices will enable us to be very strategic in planning future initiatives to improve the campus environment.”

Confidentiality is guaranteed; yes, there are rewards!

All UMSL faculty, staff and students are encouraged to take the voluntary survey. It will be available online at Take the Survey, April 2 through April 13. The survey will take 20 to 30 minutes and must be completed in one sitting. You will not be able to save your answers and return later. Survey answers are directed to Rankin and Associates and confidentiality is guaranteed. The campus will receive reports of group results and no individuals will be identifiable.

Survey takers will receive a printable voucher good for a free 20 oz. soft drink from The Nosh in the Millennium Student Center. Survey takers will also be eligible for a random drawing for prizes that include an iPod Shuffle, iTunes gift cards, UMSL gift cards and campus parking passes.

“Creating and maintaining a community environment that respects individual needs, abilities and potential is one of the most critical initiatives that we support,” George said. “It is very important for all of us that a positive climate exists, which encourages attention to fairness and discourages expressions of discrimination and harassment.”

Click here or below to watch a video by Alicia Hottle about the Climate Study Survey at UMSL.

Maureen Zegel

Maureen Zegel