Standing in solidarity with our community

University of the Pacific President Christopher Callahan Condemns Attacks on Asians, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders

President Callahan giving speech
Mary J. Wardell-Ghirarduzzi
Pacific’s new Vice President of DEI

Dr. Mary J.Wardell-Ghirarduzzi, a national thought leader on diversity issues, will start July 1 as Pacific’s inaugural vice president for diversity, equity and inclusion and chief diversity officer. Pacific will be one of only two universities in the 10-school West Coast Conference to have a VPDEI.

Featured articles

VPDEI and chief diversity officer reflects on new opportunityPacific Newsroom, April 8, 2021

"Higher Ed Equity Veteran to Bring Experience to New Post at University of the Pacific," Diverse: Issues in Higher Education, March 30, 2021

From triple-major at Pacific to Netflix screen writer

Jorge Ramirez-Martinez ‘08 “peels back the layers” of the characters he writes about and helps you understand them. This ability helped him become a screen writer for the popular series “Selena: The Series.”

“I want to do it all and create as many projects as possible,” he said. “I am very grateful for the role Pacific played in my life.”

The second season of the show releases on May 4.

Jorge Ramirez-Martinez with actress Jamie Lee Curtis.
Pacific tackles DEI issues in the media

McGeorge Law Professor Larry Levine wrote an op-ed in the San Francisco Chronicle about the Equality Act that was recently brought before congress and about past legislative attempts to protect LGBT persons from discrimination.

"Most Americans are shocked to learn that, until recently in most U.S. states, a person could indeed be fired or not hired for being lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender. Even today, LGBT persons can be denied housing solely because of their sexual orientation or gender identity."

Larry Levine
Campus gate and Burns Tower
Investing in DEI Leadership

A new Vice President of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, who will report directly to the president, will start on July 1, 2021. Pacific will be one of only two universities in the 10-school West Coast Conference to have a VPDEI.

Pacific now has school-level diversity, equity and inclusion leaders for all schools and colleges. These leaders will work closely with the future VPDEI on university-wide issues.

University Committee for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Comprised of approximately 40 faculty, staff and students, this committee is a collaborative partner in creating and sustaining a university-wide culture that consistently reflects diversity, equity and inclusion as a core value. The committee also sponsors the Champions of Diversity Awards and helps fund campus DEI work with grants.

students at graduation ceremony
Andres Ochoa- Baeza
Andres Ochoa-Baeza ’18, Sociology
DEI leader

What does diversity, equity and inclusion mean to you?

“Diversity is the essence of humanity – the essence of the whole world even. We see diverse ecosystems, diverse demographics and diverse cultures. Without diversity, the world would not be the beautiful place that it is.”

“My heritage is given to me at birth and I realize how easily that could be different. Now I understand how unique every individual is.”

Ochoa-Baeza earned a master’s degree in 2020 in sport management and coaching from the Soccer Management Institute in Rome.

Presidential DEI Priorities
Second quarterly report on Pacific's social justice and diversity initiatives

The President's update on Pacific's progress on diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) initiatives since the last quarterly report.

Campus beauty
Presidential DEI Priorities
Scholarships for Black students

University Development and Alumni Relations has embarked on a scholarship campaign for Black students.

Nearly $200,000 in new gifts to support Black students, including $102,792 raised for the new Lift Every Voice Endowed Scholarship, led by Regent Chair Norm Allen, and $87,500 to establish the Diversity and Inclusion Endowed Scholarship for Black Students. Allen said the scholarship effort will support Black students with unmet financial needs and strong leadership traits.

Presidential DEI Priorities
New DEI programming for students

The Division of Student Life has created many DEI-related programs and events during spring semester, with an emphasis on financial aid education, health and wellness, study skills, spiritual life, gender equity and student success for Black, Latino, Native American, Asian American, LGBTQ and first-generation college students. Cultural events include Pacific Spirit Fridays and game and trivia nights.

student outdoor fair

Board of Regents and DEI

The  Board of Regents will focus on these social justice initiatives: 

  • Increasing diversity in its membership.
  • Exploring campus inclusion and racial bias at the university.
  • Audits of university policies and practices that impact diversity, inclusion and racial equity.
  • Reviewing the university’s history, policies and practices on social justice issues.