Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
The Diversity, Equity & Inclusion web page provides updates on Kappa Alpha Theta's actions regarding our efforts on inclusion and diversity within our organization.
If this were any other year, college students would be getting ready to return to campus, and Theta collegians would be eagerly anticipating in-person recruitment. But—as we all know—this isn’t any other year.
While 2020 continues to pose challenges for Kappa Alpha Theta, it also offers opportunities. One of those opportunities is updating and improving our recruitment practices so they reflect Theta’s values and mission.
Our values reflect our founders’ experiences as some of the earliest women to attend college. For Bettie, Alice, Hannah, and Bettie, bias and discrimination were everyday experiences, and they fought for inclusion in a frequently hostile educational and social environment. It is fitting that our new Plan of Aspirations, created in summer 2019 and officially debuting summer 2020, includes diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts as a core component. As a result of this strategic plan and the voices of our members, Theta’s staff and volunteers have been evaluating key areas of operations—including recruitment—to identify biases and barriers to our members and potential new members (PNMs) with marginalized identities.
Today, we share with you that, effective immediately, Kappa Alpha Theta has eliminated all preferential treatment given to legacies during the recruitment process. This means that there will no longer be an automatic invitation following the first round of recruitment or an automatic placement on the chapter’s bid list. We acknowledge that many women are not legacies because their mothers, sisters, grandmothers, and great-grandmothers simply did not have the same access to higher education or the means to join Kappa Alpha Theta. By eliminating preferential treatment for legacies, Theta ensures that PNMs are not receiving additional credit for things beyond their control, such as hometown, race, family connections, etc.
Here are several ways you can help support Theta’s recruitment policies, diversity practices, and inclusion efforts.
Over the past month—through emails, an online petition, and organized listening sessions—Thetas encouraged Grand Council to modernize our policies and practices regarding legacies. We greatly value this input and the thoughtful conversations that resulted. Kappa Alpha Theta is committed to values-based recruitment, to continuing to evolve as an organization. We are committed to making every PNM feel welcomed and important, to having a meaningful conversation, even in the face of challenges such as virtual recruitment. We believe that this change to the legacy policy will allow for PNMs to value the recruitment process as an equitable opportunity. We are also committed to continue enhancing our current efforts and exploring additional means to provide our members with an inclusive and supportive experience, both as alumnae and collegians. If you have questions, please direct them to email@example.com, and thank you for helping to ensure a safe, robust, and relevant recruitment effort in 2020-21 … and beyond.