The Penn State College of Medicine Nittany Lion statue is seen surrounded by plants in the central courtyard of the College in June 2016.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology

Statement on Diversity

Penn State's Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology is committed to high quality in patient care and in the education of medical students, residents, fellows and other trainees, and to maintaining an inclusive environment that fosters the development of all learners, faculty and staff. We put an emphasis on promoting diversity, equity and inclusion as a critical component of achieving these goals.

Diversity

Diversity is ensuring a variety of perspectives are represented in order to decrease collective blind spots and maximize creative approach to problem-solving, in our residency and fellowships, and during patient care. We are committed to achieve a workforce that includes all diverse backgrounds with respect to race, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, country of origin, religion, socioeconomic status, veteran status and physical ability.

Equity

Equity entails listening to the experiences of learners and faculty to understand the unique challenges they face, and working to develop solutions to those challenges so that all have access to employment, education, leadership roles and opportunities for academic advancement.

Inclusion

Inclusion is fostering an environment that makes all individuals or groups feel welcome, respected, supported, empowered and valued for their strengths, abilities and ideas.

Commitment to Working to Combat Racism and Bias

The Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology is dedicated to the safety of all patients, families, employees and learners. We strive to actively fight racism and bias in our institution, department and community by supporting policies and practices to eliminate health disparities, improve access to care and ensure safety and a sense of belonging for all. The institution has implemented policies outlining expectations for patients for respect for and nondiscrimination against caregiving staff. We don’t tolerate bias or discrimination from our patients and their families. The institution will not honor requests for changes in providers based on any aspects of diversity - and zero tolerance for discrimination or harassment by employees of the institution. We stand together in opposition to any intolerant or disrespectful behavior directed at an individual or group.

Our Initiatives and Efforts

We have heard the challenges shared by those from minoritized backgrounds at our institution and are committed to working to address those challenges and develop a more supportive workplace for all.

In 2020, the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology convened a Committee on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion to actively work to increase awareness of diversity and equity concerns and to plan actions to increase diversity, equity and inclusion in our department. Our department has been an active member of the Institutional Diversity Council since it was founded several years ago. Our department has a vice chair for diversity, equity and inclusion to signify that its commitment to diversity is as strong as its commitments to education, quality and safety, and research.

The committee and the vice chair for diversity are continually working to:

  • provide education to members of the department that include our residency and fellowship training programs, through efforts such as diversity Grand Rounds, seminars and didactic lectures
  • support the department to increase diversity in the faculty, resident and fellowship workforce and better meet the needs of all of the members of the department
  • develop a strategy in order to attract applicants from diverse backgrounds, particularly those from backgrounds underrepresented in medicine for our residency and fellowship programs
  • provide patients and their families with excellent, compassionate, culturally responsive and equitable care
  • improve retention of faculty and trainees from diverse backgrounds with active mentoring and supporting their academic development and research, and by building a supportive and inclusive community

Our Institution offers Many affinity resource network groups, including:

  • Disability Affinity Resource Network Group
  • Group on Women in Medicine and Science
  • Interfaith Affinity Resource Network Group
  • LGBTQ and Allies Affinity Resource Network Group
  • Military/Veterans Affinity Resource Network Group
  • Multicultural Affinity Resource Network Group
  • NextGen