A Catholic college in Pennsylvania is clear about its purpose.
Villanova University has issued a new set of guidelines for staff and faculty as well as an instruction that includes an article on gender equality.
The directive outlines an important change that has occurred in the last few years:
Starting in the Spring of 2022 Villanova has made it feasible to all staff, faculty, and students to input their chosen personal pronouns and first names into the administrative system. First name and personal pronouns are now appearing on student lists as well as other communications from the university.
Moving to moral management:
This will guide Villanova Faculty and Staff in the best ways to be gender-inclusive within our work environments as well as classrooms and laboratories specifically for students who identify as transgender gender nonconforming, nonbinary, or gender-questioning communities.
The book aims to answer the following issues:
- How can we ensure gender-inclusive workplaces and education?
- How can we encourage all-inclusive participation from people of all genders, and also respond to the harmful consequences of gender stereotypes or gender mismatching?
We've reached a new level within society. Up until recently, no person had an idea of a “gender.” There was sex, but the way one presented themselves or perceived oneself was not a matter of categorization. Then, everyone in society seems to have been able to vote to create an additional section of self-identity.
It's like when everyone was told to choose a certain geometric shape. For instance, are you a dodecahedron? If you're a rhombus, tell us. Every triangle should be obvious whether they're scalene, equal, or isosceles.
We're instead handed “gender.” And Villanova's willing to change.
Staff, describe your shapes:
Normalize an gender-inclusive approach to gender by taking a role model.
Be mindful of the way you introduce yourself and introduce others. This means using gender-inclusive words such as “everyone,” “people,” or “folks” rather than gender binary terms such as “ladies and gentlemen.” It's also beneficial to demonstrate using the pronouns of others and use your own pronouns whenever you make yourself known, for example in your email signature as well as on your syllabus.
Employees are also advised that they must “add a Gender Inclusion statement to [any] syllabus or new employee orientation materials.”
Create a syllabus that gives students an understanding of gender equality and information regarding how to use pronouns as well as other non-sexist words in classrooms. If you can, make sure to discuss the reasons you are using gender-inclusive methods in your instruction.
According to Villanova the new category is crucially academic:
Inclusion of women is essential to our diversity goal for us to “commit ourselves to cultivating an academic environment marked by genuine curiosity about different perspectives, ardent receptivity to knowledge generated through intercultural connections and a genuine sensitivity to the variety of human experiences marked by domestic and global differences.”