week of june 29, 2020
Dear <<First Name>>,
We know life-saving patient care starts with an innovative and bold education for health care providers, but also an inclusive one. So, what’s next for the College of Pharmacy in our collective anti-racism and inclusion work? Action with accountability.
While we will continue our deep and meaningful discussions, it is time to share a more comprehensive plan. This plan was informed by our Diversity & Inclusion Taskforce; feedback from those in our community from historically underrepresented groups, including students, faculty, and staff; as well as data from our teaching faculty who identified gaps in their courses, and in the overall curriculum, where we can strengthen our understanding of diversity and inclusion.
Below we've outlined recent initiatives and our plan (and timeline) for moving forward. We welcome feedback and dialogue around the proposed actions, and you can contact any of the people below to voice your thoughts. We are committed to transparency about our work and will update the community on our progress, knowing accountability is crucial to the process.
We ask that you commit to supporting each other, making space for the inevitable mistakes, holding the College and each other accountable, and doing the necessary work to address bias and foster inclusion. As we embrace a more significant commitment to equity for all, it will take action from every one of us.
Vernā Myers, Esq. in her book, Moving Diversity Forward, wrote, “Diversity is being invited to the party; inclusion is being asked to dance.” In the past four years, our College has worked diligently to figure out how to open the dance floor and partner up—inclusion is necessary, albeit messy, work.
Thank you for joining with us,
R. Kip Guy, PhD
Dean & Professor

Craig Martin, PharmD, MBA
Chief Operating Officer

Trenika Mitchell, PharmD
Chief Inclusion Officer

Kristie Colón
Co-Chair, Diversity & Inclusion Taskforce

Rupinder Kaur, Graduate Student 
AAPS President
Mary Kate Kerbler
SAC Co-President

Alexsandra Nilges
PY4 Class President

Adam Kiser
PY3 Class President

Rhiannon Montgomery
PY2 Class President


If you would like to discuss any of the items below, you may contact the individuals listed above, or leave your comments via the feedback button at the bottom of this email.

  • Increase Cultural Competency & Unconscious Bias Training for Faculty, Staff, and Students
  • Complete Curricular Mapping around Diversity & Inclusion
  • Increase College Inclusion Activities
    • Increase the diversity of the speakers invited for Pharm Sci Seminars and the UKCOP Professional Series (i.e. convocation)
    • Push to diversify cases used in classes, including the incorporation of inclusive language/pronouns
  • Ensure Academic Success for a Diverse Student Body
    • Required cultural competency and unconscious bias training for all students
    • Create an Individual Development Plan (IDP) for graduate students
  • Expand Research to Include Topics Related to D&I
    • Look at drug effects on diverse populations, look at outcomes in under-represented populations, increase collaboration
  • Enhance Relational Recruiting
    • Enhance engagement with current students on UK campus and throughout Lexington
    • Engage with groups/orgs on UK campus and throughout Lexington
    • Improve relations with HBCUs and other highly diverse campuses
    • Utilize current diverse groups to recruit new students (faculty or student body)
    • Increase volunteers tutoring in underserved regions
  • Manage Admissions for a More Diverse Student Body
    • Improve training for faculty, staff, students involved in the admissions process
    • Add cultural competency component to interview process
    • Increase scholarship money targeted to increasing diversity within the student body
  • Expand Research to Include Topics Related to D&I
    • Environmental scan to understand where our research is focused and where gaps are; use these gaps to inform future hires
    • Recruit students with different disciplinary foci than traditional by applying for summer NSF REU program
  • Ensure Academic Success for Diverse Student Body
    • Work to increase the diversity of faculty, staff, and students
    • Continue cultural humility and unconscious bias training on a consistent basis for faculty, staff, and students
    • Recognize/support faculty and staff in assisting students
    • Create tailored support systems: mentoring, personal support/counseling resources, tutoring, financial support aligned with need
  • Create an inclusive curriculum in both the professional and graduate programs
    • Create small groups for students, faculty, and staff that promote fellowship, interaction, and discussion
    • Enable emotional engagement of students to inclusion (especially important for relatively non-diverse groups)
    • Broaden footprint of diversity and inclusive care beyond “special populations” towards routine consideration in all coursework. 
  • Teach students to be open-minded and give agency to intellectually challenge concepts and their own worldviews
    • Work with diverse “near-neighbors,” structure opportunities for learning about the culture of peers
    • Equip faculty with activities that can break barriers for communication and bias behavior among students (CELT, Safe Zone training, financial support to develop methods, compile online resources for self-study, etc.)
    • Implement required course/training on diversity, bias, and inclusion for all students starting in orientation (2-3-hours); create safe spaces to share perspectives; common reading and discussion groups, etc.
    • Enhance/design experiential education opportunities to provide a wider range of exposure to diverse groups
  • Integrate more discussions around international healthcare


Below is a list of our recent initiatives and the year they were implemented.
  • Inclusive and accessible facilities and signage (2016)
  • Mandatory unconscious bias training for all faculty and staff (2016)
  • Chief Inclusion Officer meeting with student groups to determine areas College can improve (2019-2020)
  • Quarterly all-college lunches/programming to help foster an inclusive community and sense of belonging (2016)
  • Added cultural competency component to professional student interview process (2020)
  • Cook-Ross facilitated all-faculty retreat on D&I (2017)
  • College participation and assistance in organization of the Time for Action:  Health Colleges and Partners United Against Racial Injustice event (2020)
  • Development of Diversity & Inclusion Task Force (2017)
  • Update UKCOP website with more inclusive language as well as anti-racism and inclusion resources (2020)
  • Implicit association testing & discussion sessions for second-year professional students (2017)
  • Sponsorship of Lyman T. Johnson Awards Dinner and nomination of UKCOP student and alumnus - net proceeds from sponsorship goes toward student scholarships for historically underrepresented students (ongoing)
  • Mandatory cultural competency training for incoming professional students (2017) and graduate students (2019)
  • Global Health Initiative in Partnership with Shoulder to Shoulder (ongoing) 
  • Individual Development Plan (IDP) implemented for graduate students (2017)
  • Devoted substantial proportion of scholarship funding specifically to enable historically underrepresented students to attend the College of Pharmacy (ongoing)
  • Special Populations Class integrated into the professional curriculum (2017)
  • Sponsorship of the UK LGBTQ* Resource Center’s Feast for Equality (ongoing)
  • Everything is Science festival to increase science literacy within the community (2018)
  • Participation in MLK Freedom March and sponsorship of Lexington’s Unity Breakfast (ongoing)
  • Created Assistant Dean of Diversity & Inclusion (Chief Inclusion Officer) position who is a member of the College’s Executive Council (2018)
  • Select faculty participation in UK’s LSAMP program (ongoing)
  • Case writing workshop provided to faculty to assist in developing more culturally inclusive and diverse patient cases (2018)
  • Inclusive and relational student recruitment (ongoing)
  • Mandatory unconscious bias training for all incoming students (2018)
  • Select participation in UK’s Center for Appalachian Research in Environmental Studies (CARES) science communication (ongoing)
  • Development of The Commonwealth Experience Day to increase student exposure to all areas of Kentucky for professional students (2018)
  • College-wide seminars on health disparities and cultural competency using the UKCOP Professional Series (ongoing)
  • One paid marketing internship per year for women and/or students of color (2018)
  • Area Health Education Center (AHEC) partnership for pharmacy exposure within elementary & high school students (ongoing)
  • Mapping diversity and inclusion topics within the curriculum (2019)
  • Development of SciCats, where faculty and graduate students help bring science to local grade schools (ongoing)
  • Diversity and inclusion statement now required on faculty applications to assist search committees with applicant commitment to diversity and inclusion (2019)
  • Safe Zone training for select faculty and staff (in progress)


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Holiday Accruals.  Holiday accruals have been loaded for the July 4th holiday on Friday, July 3, 2020.  Please submit your leave requests for this holiday. The 2020-21 holiday schedule is available.
UK’s Restart Plan is now available to view online. You will hear more from us on specifics in the next few weeks.

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