Update on Fordham’s Diversity Action Plan


In summer 2020, the university released a plan to “[address] racism” and “[educate] for justice.” (Courtesy of Instagram)

In summer 2020, the university released a plan to “[address] racism” and “[educate] for justice.” This action plan included a pledge to develop admission strategies to recruit a more diverse student body, increase attention to the diversification of faculty and develop and cement stronger partnerships with organizations in the Bronx.

As of the last update posted in spring 2022, the enrollment of non-white students steadily grew. For example, the recruitment of Asian-identifying students increased from 14% to 16%. The Office of Admissions also continued their participation in the National Recognition Program Scholarship program, which provides scholarships to Hispanic, African-American and indigenous students.

“I have noticed a push for diversity at Fordham,” said Vincent Vitanza, FCRH ’24. “As an orientation leader, a lot of our training happens with OMA [Office of Multicultural Affairs], and we are trained on how to make the experience more inclusive and welcoming for the incoming freshmen.”

Although an updated report has not been published for fall 2022, Rafael Zapata, the chief diversity officer, said he is prepared to publish a report soon and is working on an update letter to the campus community.

“Thanks to the work of our admissions team, and the myriad faculty, students and staff across Fordham that support those recruitment and yield efforts, we are making significant progress on undergraduate student diversity: The incoming class consists of more than 46% domestic students of color,” said Zapata.

“Various staff development opportunities are taking place across the university, some supported centrally by the Office of Human Resources, and others sponsored more locally at the division, school and departmental levels.”

A common critique of the university’s administration is the degree of separation between Fordham and its Bronx community. However, since the launch of the initiative in 2020, there has been an increased effort to bridge that gap.

“We are working with our colleagues in finance on an on-going effort to promote business relationships with minority and women owned businesses in the local area,” said Zapata.

However, some students are unaware that this initiative exists at all, which may damper the university’s success.

“I didn’t know about this goal specifically, and I do think it’s been pushed to the shadows since its original publication,” said Vitanza. “I think the university [should] restate this goal.”

Despite this, Zapata restated an emphasis on students thriving more than anything else, and the overall development of the student body as a whole.

Students can expect a full update when the full letter to the community is released.