Diversity Month: The JKU, Diversity, and Why It Is Important to Us

The JKU has a Department for Human Resource Development, Gender & Diversity Management. Why? Learn more here!

Mirjam Strecker; Credit: privat
Mirjam Strecker; Credit: privat

We spoke with Mirjam Strecker about Diversity Month: What is it, why do we have it, and what is the JKU doing to strengthen and support diversity. Mirjam Strecker is the audit officer for "Hochschule und Familie" and is also responsible for cross mentoring and school projects.

What is Diversity Month
Mirjam Strecker: First launched in May 2020, the European Diversity Month was initially created to mark the 10th anniversary of the European Diversity Charter Platform. This year, Diversity Month will focus on "Building Bridges." Organizations across Europe are being invited to advocate and promote diversity and take action accordingly by, for example, planning internal and external events focusing on diversity inclusion issues, showcasing their diversity policies, organizing virtual or hybrid awareness-raising workshops, or running a social media campaign. Detailed information about the 2022 EU Diversity Month 2022 is available here (https://eudiversity2022.eu/european-diversity-month-2022/, opens an external URL in a new window).

Why is the JKU involved in Diversity Month?
Mirjam Strecker: The JKU’s Diversity Strategy was published in May of 2021, closely followed by the JKU Equality Plan published in June of 2021. The "Diversity Month" project meets crucial goals and measures as outlined in these two documents, thereby serving as a cornerstone to support our policies in the area of diversity and equality.

Furthermore, everyone at all university levels should become more aware of issues in the area of equality. The JKU would like to be involved in the EU Diversity Month platform annually as a long-term opportunity for reflection as well as an initiative to kick-start our own activities. Detailed information about the JKU’s 2022 Diversity Month is available at (www.jku.at/diversity, opens an external URL in a new window).

In terms of diversity, what does the JKU consider important?
Mirjam Strecker: There is strength in diversity. Diversity not only enables the plurality of convictions, it’s open to – and welcomes - different lifestyles. People’s colors and diversity broaden our horizons, giving us an opportunity to see things in new ways and support our level of creativity. We want to practice our appreciation, regardless of gender identity, or those with and without disabilities, and with people in Austria as well as other parts of the world. Together, with our individual strengths and weaknesses. we make up the JKU. Whether it is about students, faculty members, or administrative services, we want to work together to create the best possible university for all of us. Read more here (https://www.jku.at/die-jku/ueber-uns/diversity-strategie/).