Diverse population drives university’s equity practices

U of T focuses on promoting women and minorities to leadership roles
By Shannon Klie
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 03/15/2006

When a human resources department oversees 10,000 full-time employees in Canada’s most diverse city, issues of equity are bound to come to the forefront. At the University of Toronto, even organizing events for a work-life balance month required giving thought to the challenges people of different cultures, genders and ages face at work and at home.

While some HR departments pay lip service to diversity, the university walks the walk, says professor and vice-president of human resources and equity Angela Hildyard.

“The linkage between HR and equity is very valuable. Our student body is probably the most diverse student body of any institution in North America,” says Hildyard. “If we’re going to provide a really great student experience, then we have got to pay very serious attention to the diversity of our student body. That means we’ve got to not only look at the diversity of our faculty and staff, but we’ve also got to know much more about the diverse communities we have at the university.”