Diversity and Inclusion

OSU values, supports, and advances diversity and recognizes it as an integral component in our pursuit of academic excellence and leadership development. The Division of Institutional Diversity works to engage the OSU community with progressive programs and initiatives focused on embracing, enhancing, celebrating, and promoting diversity and inclusiveness.

Areas of Impact

When you support the Diversity and Inclusion, you help shape the future for Oklahoma State University. By contributing to the fund(s) below, you make our future brighter orange!

Retention Initiative for Student Excellence (RISE)

20-03050 - This Operating Funds-General Purpose fund benefits students through GEN UNIV - Academic Affairs.

Williams Foundation Inclusion Leadership Program Fund

20-02550 - This operating fund benefits students through Institutional Diversity

Diversity & Inclusion Excellence Fund

20-89900 - This Operating Funds-General Purpose fund benefits students through GEN UNIV - Academic Affairs.

OSU continued experiencing a significant and sustained transformation in its commitment to diversity and inclusion during the 2016-2017 academic year. This year the enrollment and graduation numbers for students of color reached an all-time high. The fall 2016 undergraduate enrollment was over 5,800 students of color and accounted for approximately 28 percent of all undergraduates, and represented an increase of 96 percent since fall 2009. OSU also experienced significant growth among graduate students of color.

Most notably, the graduation rate for students of color continued to increase at all degree levels. Between the graduating class of May 2010 and May 2016, students of color earning a bachelor’s degree increased 54 percent overall, including a 141 percent increase among Latinos. A similar increase occurred at the graduate level with students of color experiencing a 43 percent increase in earned master’s degrees and a 118 percent increase at the Ph.D. level. Additionally, since 2009, OSU experienced a 40 percent increase in the number of faculty of color.

OSU continues to be the most successful University system nationally for American Indians earning a college degree. More Native Americans earn degrees from OSU than any other institution in the nation.

Diversity and Inclusion 3
Diversity and Inclusion 2

The University strengthened its reputation as a national leader in the realm of diversity and inclusion by earning several nationally prominent awards. OSU is one of 18 schools nationally to become a five-year recipient of the Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award. The University’s ranking among the Top 100 Degree Producers compiled by Diverse Issues in Higher Education for underrepresented minority graduates further highlights OSU’s national prestige. Additionally, OSU received the Tulsa Regional Chamber’s 2016 Mosaic Five-Star Top Inclusive Workplace Award.

The Division of Institutional Diversity Capital Campaign stands at $3.7 million, and has yielded 32 new endowed scholarships. Your generous investment provides a legacy that transforms the lives of OSU students. Your support enables us to enrich and fortify a University system that recognizes, celebrates, and values diversity and inclusion to ensure a brighter future for all.

Learn more about OSU’s diversity and inclusion efforts here.

Meet the Vice President

Kirksey Jason

Dr. Jason F. Kirksey holds a BA in both Political Science and Economics (1989) and an MA in Political Science (1991) from Oklahoma State University. He earned his Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of New Orleans in 1997. He is also a 2014 graduate of Class XXVII of Leadership Oklahoma.

Dr. Kirksey brings over 25 years of experience teaching, researching, and active engagement with issues related to diversity, equity, and inclusion. His areas of expertise include minority politics, race and sports, and public policy, with emphasis on African Americans, Native Americans, and women in the American political system. Dr. Kirksey’s published research has appeared in the National Political Science Review, Women and Politics, the Voting Rights Review, Focus on Law Review, and Oklahoma Politics. In addition to his published articles, Dr. Kirksey has written several book chapters, focused primarily on the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Additionally, he has served as an expert witness in federal and state voting rights litigation.

Currently, Dr. Kirksey is the Vice President for Institutional Diversity and the Chief Diversity Officer at Oklahoma State University. He also holds the rank of Associate Professor of Political Science at OSU. Under the past decade of Dr. Kirksey’s leadership, OSU has emerged as one of the nation’s leaders in diversity and inclusion. Since 2009, OSU has experienced a 103% increase in the enrollment of students of color and a 222% increase in first-generation students of color. Most importantly, since May 2010 OSU has had a 107% increase in students of color earning a bachelor’s degree. Also, over the past decade, more Native Americans have earned a college degree from OSU than any other institution in the nation. OSU has also experienced over a 90% increase in the number of African American, Latino, Native American, and biracial/multiracial faculty in classrooms across the institution since 2010.

Over the past eight years, Dr. Kirksey has served as the principal investigator for approximately $10M in total National Science Foundation (NSF) funding at OSU. During his tenure as Vice President, Dr. Kirksey has also had administrative oversight of an additional $10M in NSF and U.S. Department of Education funding. Since January 2014, he has also served as an appointed member by the chairman of the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education to the statewide Oklahoma NSF Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) Committee.

Dr. Kirksey is a native of Denver, Colorado. He and his wife Kim have 2 children, Kaitlyn and Garrett.