DEEPS is devoted to pursuing an open and inclusive environment that is welcoming to everyone, regardless of background including but not limited to physical ability, socio-economic status, race, ethnicity, political views, religious beliefs, national origin, sexual orientation, and gender. A core mission of DEEPS is to promote equity and diversity in the Earth Sciences – within the department, Brown university, and more generally, science. Like many fields, the Earth Sciences suffers from a lack of diversity and a history of structural racism and prejudices. Yet the Earth Sciences offers outstanding opportunities for interdisciplinary teaching and learning about the world around us that can engage anyone, and that benefits from diverse perspectives. Employment opportunities abound, and address some of the world’s most pressing societal problems through cutting-edge science. DEEPS seeks to harness this potential and combat historical prejudices through a variety of anti-racist, anti-homophobic, anti-sexist, and anti-transphobic activities.
Our departmental Diversity, Inclusion, and Action Committee meets regularly and organizes department-wide town halls, readings and discussions, and training events (e.g. bystander intervention, bias) to improve diversity and inclusivity. Our DIAC organized a series of town halls this summer in the wake of racial unrest sparked by the murder of George Floyd, which helped us establish a plan for short- and long-term actions and goals for the coming years.
The department works to diversify undergraduate research opportunities in DEEPS and researchers in the sciences through its NSF-REU program, Dynamic Earth 2020, which partners with the Leadership Alliance to recruit students from groups underrepresented in the sciences to conduct summer research at Brown.
Our DEEPS STEP program promotes scientific Earth Sciences education in majority-minority schools in the Providence Public School system through a partnership between students, faculty, and staff in DEEPS and Providence teachers.