Community Inclusion and Excellence

The university initiatives aim to extend the frontier of knowledge and tackle the most critical problems facing humanity. To accomplish these bold plans, Yale must recruit and retain preeminent faculty members who define their fields, attract the most promising students, hire excellent, innovative staff, and build a supportive community of alumni. 

A strong sense of inclusion and belonging creates the conditions for community members to do their best work. The university works hard to cultivate this kind of environment, in support of its people and their pursuit of teaching, learning, research, and scholarship of the highest caliber. This priority plays a critical part in upholding Yale’s commitment to excellence, realizing its mission to improve the world, and pursuing its ambitions across every other university initiative.

Support for Faculty: Invest in faculty diversity and engagement to create the conditions for excellence in research, teaching, preservation, and practice.

Support for Students: Expand access and affordability, foster community, and build engagement across the university to support and sustain a diverse and exceptional educational community. 

Support for Staff: Attract and retain exceptional staff by providing opportunities for their professional growth, development, and success, which in turn allows them to excel in their essential work for the university.

Support for Alumni: Support our alumni community in sustaining and building strong connections between each other and the university through educational events and discussions that capitalize on the Yale community’s expertise and enthusiasm.

Highlighting Progress

Belonging at Yale

Led by Kimberly M. Goff-Crews, university secretary and vice president for university life, Belonging at Yale puts into action the university’s vision for a diverse, equitable, and inclusive community. Its guiding principles advance Yale’s vision for vibrant community life in which members encounter and appraise a broad array of ideas, are treated with dignity and respect, and feel welcome to make their voices heard. Across the university, five-year Belonging at Yale action plans for each school and administrative unit support and enhance diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging.

Belonging at Yale

Yale and Slavery Working Group

Since October 2020, this group of scholars, students, and community members has undertaken a rigorous examination of Yale’s historical entanglements and associations with slavery, the slave trade, and abolition. Led by David Blight, Sterling Professor of History and director of the Gilder Lehrman Center for the Study of Slavery, Resistance, and Abolition, the working group also plans to publish a narrative book based on its research.

Yale and Slavery Working Group

The Pennington Fellowship

This new scholarship supports New Haven high school graduates who attend Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs); it seeks to address, in part, historical disparities in educational opportunities for Black citizens. It will be funded by Yale and administered by the New Haven Promise program.

The Pennington Fellowship
overhead view of people gathered in a building

Historic Partnership with New Haven

Yale reaffirmed its three-century-old partnership with the city of New Haven with a nationally unique, six-year commitment, including a voluntary contribution of $135 million over six years, the investment of $5 million to help launch the Center for Inclusive Growth, the conversion of High Street between Chapel and Elm streets into a city-owned walkway, and the offset of loss in tax revenues for properties Yale takes off the tax rolls during this period.

Historic Partnership with New Haven

Selected Milestones

August 2017

Opened two new residential colleges

(Benjamin Franklin and Pauli Murray)

October 2017

Enhanced Yale College financial aid to include assistance with insurance

November 2018

Created permanent endowment for the Poorvu Center for Teaching and Learning

April 2019

Announced the expansion of First-Year Scholars at Yale

March 2019

Held inaugural IMPACT conference for Yale alumni

September 2019

Celebrated 50WomenAtYale150 with weekend commemoration

October 2019

Expanded Yale College financial aid policies to raise “zero parent share” threshold to $75,000

November 2019

Appointed Kimberly Goff-Crews to formally lead the university’s campus-wide Belonging at Yale initiative

September 2020

Released recommendations of the President’s Committee on Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging

October 2020

Launched next phase of Belonging at Yale

June 2021

Eliminated tuition for all students at the David Geffen School of Drama at Yale

November 2021
December 2022

Created a new scholarship program—the Pennington Fellowship—that responds specifically to the research of the Yale and Slavery Working Group

February 2023

With gift from The Starr Foundation, the Yale School of Medicine reduced expected student borrowing from $15,000 to $10,000 by replacing the loan with an additional $5,000 in scholarship

February 2023

Expanded full-tuition scholarships through the Hurst Horizon Scholarship Program for Yale Law School students