Kansas Athletics Diversity and Inclusion

Kansas Jayhawks

Student-Athlete and Staff Development  |  #OneTeam  |  Definitions 

Diversity is one of Kansas Athletics’ core values and the department’s Diversity Committee exists to help support initiatives, provide awareness, provide training and educate staff members and student-athletes on diversity related topics, while also celebrating differences and achievements. 

The Diversity Committee promotes a culture in which diversity and inclusion are an integral component of the educational experience of student-athletes and professional development of staff.

Student-Athlete and Staff Development Topics Rotation

On an annual basis, Kansas student-athletes and staff are presented with a topical theme for further study and development, meaning over a four year athletic career, student-athletes receive a comprehensive exposure to a variety of diversity and inclusion related topics.

Kansas Jayhawks

Social Class

– Class
– Social Economic Status
– Educational Background
– Marital/Parental Status
– Employment/Work Status
– Financial Income Status

Kansas Jayhawks

Race & Social Issues

– Race
– Creed
– National Origin
– Geographic Location
– Religion

Kansas Jayhawks

Gender & Sexuality

– Sex
– Gender Expression
– Sexual Orientation

Kansas Jayhawks


– Disability
– Genetic Makeup
– Health Impairment

#OneTeam Student-Athlete Profiles

Click the name below to read more.


Mitch Cooper
Track & Field

Kristen Byrd


Minami Levonowich


Marcus Wheeler


Institutional Statement

Office of Diversity and Equity Statement 
As a premier international research university, the University of Kansas is committed to an open, diverse and inclusive learning and working environment that nurtures the growth and development of all. KU holds steadfast in the belief that an array of values, interests, experiences, and intellectual and cultural viewpoints enrich learning and our workplace. The promotion of and support for a diverse and inclusive community of mutual respect requires the engagement of the entire university. http://diversity.ku.edu/

Institutional Policy

Non-Discrimination Policy
The University of Kansas prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, national origin, age, ancestry, disability, status as a veteran, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, gender identity, gender expression and genetic information in the university’s programs and activities. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Director of the Office of Institution Opportunity and Access: ioa@ku.edu 1246 West Campus Road, Room 153A, Lawrence, KS 66045, 785-864-6414, TTY 711.

Institutional Reporting

Institutional Opportunity and Access: Discrimination Reporting
To report discrimination or if you need guidance on discrimination concerns, please call the office of Institutional Opportunity and Access at 785-864-6415

Who must report discriminatory actions?
Unit heads and others who serve in leadership roles in the university are responsible for nondiscrimination in their employment and academic environments. Deans, Directors, Chairpersons or other administrators or supervisors, including faculty members, graduate teaching assistants, and academic advisors shall contact the Office of Institutional Opportunity and Access to initiate an investigation within their area of responsibility if they know or have reason to believe that discriminatory practice(s) may have occurred. The Executive Director of the Office of Institutional Opportunity and Access may also initiate an investigation when appropriate and in the interests of the University to do so. http://policy.ku.edu/IOA/discrimination-complaint-resolution


Diversity: Individual differences (e.g., personality, learning styles, and life experiences) and group / social differences (e.g., race, ethnicity, class, gender, sexual orientation, country of origin, and ability as well as cultural, political, religious, or other affiliations) that can be engaged in the service of learning. Inclusion: The active, intentional and ongoing engagement with diversity – in people, in the curriculum, in the co-curriculum, and in communities (intellectual, social, cultural, geographical) with which individuals might connect – in ways that increase one’s awareness, content knowledge, cognitive sophistication, and empathic understanding of the complex ways individuals interact within [and change] systems and institutions.

Equity: The creation of opportunities for historically underrepresented populations to have equal access to and participate in educational programs that are capable of closing the achievement gaps in student success and completion. Definitions from: https://www.aacu.org

Discrimination: Is treatment or consideration of, or making a distinction in favor of or against, a person or thing based on the group, class, or category to which that person or thing belongs rather than on individual merit. This includes treatment of an individual or group based on their actual or perceived membership in a certain group or social category, “in a way that is worse than the way people are usually treated”. It involves the group’s initial reaction or interaction, influencing the individual’s actual behavior towards the group or the group leader, restricting members of one group from opportunities or privileges that are available to another group, leading to the exclusion of the individual or entities based on logical or irrational decision making.

Microaggressions: Is a form of unintended discrimination. It is depicted by the use of known social norms of behavior and/or expression that, while without conscious choice of the user, has the same effect as conscious, intended discrimination.

FLAG BEARERS – KU cheerleaders Zack Brenner, Max Simonian and Caleb Locke used all their speed and strength to lead the KU football team onto the field while bearing three large flags inside David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium where the Jayhawks played Iowa State on Saturday, November 3.

KU Leads

K Club

K Club’s mission is to help preserve the history and traditions of Kansas Athletics, support current student-athletes, and connect former participants, coaches, student athletic trainers and managers of varsity sports at the University of Kansas.

Once a Jayhawk, Alway a Jayhawk

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