President Bettison-Varga Creates Focus on Diversity and Community for 2010-2011 Year

By Abby Volkmann '13Photo Editor

Scripps’ Principles of Community and Principles of Diversity highlight tenents by which members of the Scripps community should live. By accepting all persons, regardless of their race, ethnicity, religion, culture, color, beliefs, physical condition, socioeconomic background, sexual orientation and age, community members can create an environment that respects and values these differences—a place where everyone thrives.

Scripps hopes to cultivate this sort of community, one free of misunderstanding and discrimination. This year’s emphasis on these principles serves as a reminder to students, faculty and staff to show respect and understanding toward others. Scripps views community diversity as a necessary aspect of an exceptional institution, since a diverse community is a community that is better suited for learning. It provides students with opportunities to learn from and work with people from a variety of cultures and backgrounds who have a multitude of beliefs. By embracing varying beliefs, eliminating stereotypes and appreciating others, students can learn to live—as Ellen Browning Scripps desired—confidently, courageously and hopefully.

The Scripps College Guide to Student Life highlights nine main principles that students are expected to practice in order to foster a diverse community. Scripps hosts a wide range of guest speakers—from Republican House of Representatives speaker Newt Gingrich to fairy tale aficionado Jack Zipes—who help to promote an environment conducive to a broad range of opinions and encourage freedom of belief and speech.

The Principles of Community and Diversity are extensions of Lori Bettison-Varga’s inauguration theme, The Genius of Women—a message encouraging the community to respect, value and learn from one another to successfully cultivate the Genius of Women.