Office of Inclusion and Student Engagement


OISE Overview

The Office of Inclusion and Student Engagement (OISE) is part of the Graduate School’s framework for providing an inclusive and holistic approach to graduate and postdoctoral scholar success. OISE supports scholar success through recruitment, diversity fellowships, mentoring, professional, leadership, and community development programming, and ongoing support. Postdoctoral scholars receive a wide range of additional services through the Office of Postdoctoral Studies.

OISE works to advance a more inclusive, equitable, and welcoming environment for all graduate students and postdoctoral scholars, but especially for those from backgrounds historically excluded from and underrepresented in the academy. In collaboration with other partners within and external to the Graduate School, OISE supports graduate students and postdoctoral scholars in their “Pathways to Success” by providing and promoting programming organized into the following thematic focus areas:

The events, programs, webinars, and workshops address key areas for personal and professional development, including: balance and resilience, communications, community building and networking, ethics and integrity, leadership and management, teaching and mentoring, and developing an entrepreneurial mindset.

This collaborative programming offers graduate students and postdoctoral scholars the opportunity to build skills that are crucial to their development, success, and preparation for multiple career pathways. OISE also provides leadership that demonstrates the university’s commitment to promoting a climate of diversity, inclusion, engagement, and achievement, which are integral components of graduate and postdoctoral education.

OISE Values Statement

We are a dedicated team that drives transformational change through innovative and collaborative practices.

OISE Mission: Advance. Engage. Develop.

  • Advance: To advance efforts to make graduate education and postdoctoral experiences more accessible to scholars from marginalized communities and backgrounds historically excluded from and underrepresented in the academy
  • Engage: To employ evidence-based practices to engage graduate students, postdoctoral scholars, faculty, and other partners in creating a more inclusive campus environment that supports the academic and social sense of belonging of all graduate students and postdoctoral scholars
  • Develop: To provide collaborative professional, academic, and community development opportunities that facilitate the progression and achievement of all graduate students and postdoctoral scholars, but especially those from backgrounds historically excluded from and underrepresented in the academy

Land Acknowledgment

The Graduate School Office of Inclusion & Student Engagement acknowledges that Cornell University is located on the traditional homelands of the Gayogo̱hó꞉nǫ’ (the Cayuga Nation). The Gayogo̱hó꞉nǫ’ are members of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy, an alliance of six sovereign Nations with a historic presence on this land. The Confederacy precedes the establishment of Cornell University, New York State, and the United States of America. We acknowledge the painful history of Gayogo̱hó꞉nǫ’ dispossession, and honor the ongoing connection of Gayogo̱hó꞉nǫ’ people, past and present, to these lands and waters. We encourage all who engage with Cornell University to learn more about the Gayogo̱hó꞉nǫ’, their history, and people, and to take meaningful action to support indigenous scholars and their communities. We also encourage all to learn more about the American Indian and Indigenous Studies Program‘s Project and Blog on Cornell’s Relationship to Indigenous Dispossession

Commitment to Equity & Inclusion

The Graduate School recognizes that the acute and frequently transgenerational trauma being experienced by members of our Black, Indigenous, Latinx/a/o, and Asian American and Pacific Islander communities, which has only been amplified by our current socio-cultural circumstances, is an outcome of the structural racism that continues to pervade our society and institutions. We also recognize the impact of the bias and trauma experienced by those who identify with other backgrounds historically excluded from the academy, such as scholars who manage disabilities, members of our LGBTQ+ community, and international scholars, especially those whose identities have been racialized and/or marginalized within a U.S. context. Positive systemic and structural change will only come with informed and intentional action. To this end, the Graduate School remains committed to actively fostering an environment that engenders the full and safe participation of all members of our graduate and professional student community and demonstrates how their diverse perspectives, identities, ways of knowing, and lived experiences are recognized and valued. The Graduate School continues to carry forward and expand initiatives to support social justice, address inequities, and help Cornell, as well as the academy more broadly, become a place where all members of our community, but especially those from backgrounds historically excluded and underrepresented in graduate education, can establish a sense of belonging, feel affirmed, see themselves represented in multiple dimensions, and where they can thrive, not just survive.