Now Is the Time for Change: Reframing Diversity Planning at Land-Grant Universities

Using policy discourse analysis, the author analyzed 21 diversity action plans issued at 20 U.S. land-grant universities over a 5-year period to identify images of diversity and the problems and solutions represented in these documents. Dominant discourses of access, disadvantage, the marketplace, and democracy were most prominent in conveying images of diverse individuals. These discourses shape individuals’ ways of thinking and acting, meaning these discursive practices produce (at times competing) possibilities and constrain, even conceal, alternatives. These findings are discussed and recommendations are delineated for how Extension personnel might reframe diversity efforts.