Mission of the Office

The Office for Institutional Equity and Belonging (OIEB) is an integral part of Wheaton’s pursuit of excellence. Enabling the college to fulfill its mission to provide a transformative liberal arts education, OIEB and its campus partners strengthen Wheaton’s capacity to envision and achieve a radically imaginative understanding of engagement, affirmation, and belonging in our community.

The Office’s role is two-fold: to foster decolonized learning and to advance cross-campus initiatives to produce bold, equity-driven outcomes. It does so by generating and disseminating evidence-based tools, initiatives, and frameworks. Above all, OIEB engages campus constituents and governance committees to anchor social justice, champion diversity, and weave equity and universal design into the operating norms of our college—our organizational practices, policies, and culture.

“Equity, diversity, and inclusion cannot be achieved just by taking a workshop, creating a list of action items, and attending a course—although all of these are important.  What is essential is making a lifelong commitment, as an individual and an institution, to learning about structural inequities in the past and the present, to listening with empathy, and then to mending, to repairing the world, tikkun olam in Hebrew.”

~ President Michaele Whelan


Invitation for community input

The Office of Institutional Equity and Belonging provides equity-minded approaches to ensure best practices are shared throughout the community. We implement data-informed programs and initiatives to improve the welcoming environment and climate to guarantee the success of our students from diverse backgrounds.

The newly created division houses the following departments:

The Marshall Center for Intercultural

    • Intercultural Early Arrival Program
    • Cultivating Leaders in Action

Center for Social Justice and Community Impact

  • Community Service
  • LGBTQ+ Engagement
  • 1stGeneration & Low-Income Engagement  
  • Wheaton Pantry

Center for Religious and Spiritual Life

    • Interfaith Programs and Resources
    • Meditation Room

DEAL: Diversity, Equity & Access Leadership

    • Education and Programming Committee
    • Senate Committee
    • Strategic Planning and Accountability Committee

Throughout our services and programs, we offer opportunities for professional growth, education to implement wise practice skills, assessment, interventions, and action planning to support the needs of all members of our community:

  • We develop strategies for leading and implementing equity-minded practices to support student success.
  • We work to increase diverse student, faculty, and staff recruitment and retention.
  • We equip our community by increasing sensitivity and awareness of diverse lives while building respect and acceptance for multiple diversities of identity.

We firmly believe that solid relationships and networking support the success of our community. The key to practical efforts is aligning resources supporting the College’s goals and priorities.

Visit any center to learn more about our resources or attend our programs throughout the academic year. We welcome your suggestions!

Luis F. Paredes, Ph.D.
Associate Vice President for Institutional Equity and Belonging

Office of Institutional Equity and Belonging
Park Hall 107
Email: [email protected]

We are revamping our websites, and later in the semester, we will release our new OIEB website.