Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging

At The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine, we believe that diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging are crucial for strengthening and positioning the veterinary profession for service, sustainability, excellence, and impact. That's why we're dedicated to creating a welcoming, comfortable, safe, and respectful environment for all members of our community – students, staff, clients, and visitors.

Our Commitment to Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging

We recognize that diversity encompasses a wide range of identities and experiences, including age, ancestry, color, race, ethnicity, genetic information, HIV/AIDS status, physical and mental abilities, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, parental, marital, or pregnancy status, religious or political beliefs, military or veteran status, and geographic, socioeconomic, and educational backgrounds. We understand that diversity promotes a culture of inclusion that understands and appreciates the world beyond our own individual perspective.

For us, diversity is a fundamental component of excellence and is necessary for our community to thrive both professionally and personally. That's why we strive to foster an environment for working, learning, and serving where everyone feels welcome, comfortable, safe, respected, and valued.

Read our May 2022 publication in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association.

diverse student ambassadors standing outside vet campus

Land Acknowledgement

We would also like to acknowledge and honor the Indigenous peoples whose land we occupy and the ongoing impact of colonization and systemic oppression on Indigenous communities. A land acknowledgment recognizes and respects the relationship between Indigenous peoples and their ancestral and contemporary territories. It also provides an opportunity to explore the current impact of colonization and systemic oppression.

The College of Veterinary Medicine’s Office of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging would like to acknowledge that the land The Ohio State University occupies is the ancestral and contemporary territory of the Shawnee, Potawatomi, Delaware, Miami, Peoria, Seneca, Wyandotte, Ojibwe and Cherokee peoples. Specifically, the university resides on land ceded in the 1795 Treaty of Greeneville and the forced removal of tribes through the Indian Removal Act of 1830. We want to honor the resiliency of these tribal nations and recognize the historical contexts that have and continue to affect the Indigenous peoples of this land.


Respectful dialogue is engagement in honest, thoughtful, and reflexive conversation with the goal of understanding one another. Respectful engagement does not mean that everyone has to agree or adopt each another's perspectives. Rather, it is by sharing differing perspectives that we are able to effectively communicate across differences and boundaries and learn from one another. Each person involved in respectful dialogue takes responsibility for the impact of their words and actions regardless of intent, and strives to operate with curiosity, authenticity, and vulnerability. Each individual engaged in respectful dialogue is not only entitled to their perspectives but is also "entitled to be treated with respect and dignity." This toolkit defines respectful dialogue, identifies goals for faculty, staff, and students, provides strategies, and shares additional resources and supports.

Basic guidelines for creating a brave space for authentic conversation where participants can learn from one another. These can be adapted to a workplace, a classroom, or a personal conversation with family and friends. Share these guidelines, adapted from Guidance for Talking about Racism, with participants and set the stage together.

A collection of readings developed by the Office of Diversity and Inclusion (ODI) that connect to both historical and contemporary perspectives on racism. Many of these books can be accessed through The Ohio State University Libraries. ODI and University Libraries have reading guides to structure and spark conversation. These guides can be used to facilitate conversations and reading groups with friends, family members, and colleagues about race and racism.

Journey for Teams provides a pathway for veterinary professionals to deepen knowledge of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) and foster the advancement of DEI in veterinary workplaces.

Visit the university's Office of Diversity and Inclusions for more information and resources. 

Contact Information

Dr. Sue Knoblaugh 
Co-Director Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging
Associate Professor - Clinical, Veterinary Bioscience

Sandra Dawkins
Co-Director Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging
Director, Admissions and Recruitment