Creating a more welcoming climate for all. Recruiting and retaining a more diverse group of students, staff, research appointees, and faculty. Fostering stronger connections with the surrounding Mission Hill community.

These were some of the issues addressed at a Town Hall on diversity and inclusion at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health on October 28, 2015. The event, held in Kresge Cafeteria, was open to the Harvard Chan community.

Acting Dean David Hunter and Associate Dean for Diversity Meredith Rosenthal spoke at the event, outlining steps that had been taken in recent months, as well as plans for the future, to boost discussion and action on diversity and inclusion.

Hunter said that a recent survey by an outside firm suggests that both the financial challenges of coming to Harvard Chan and the overall climate of the School and Boston can serve as barriers to recruiting underrepresented minorities as well as students from other marginalized groups. So the School is working hard to raise money for student financial aid and to address issues of climate, Hunter said. “We know Boston is not perceived as the most hospitable city in America to people of color. But the culture of our own community is something that we can absolutely… improve,” he said.

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