At Mitchell Hamline we recognize that:
- Diversity and inclusion are vital to the success of the institution.
- In order to build a vibrant learning community and an inclusive profession, all individuals need to feel welcomed and respected.
- Every member of the Mitchell Hamline community is a complex being with multiple dimensions to his/her identity, including: personal style, age, race, gender, religion, ethnicity, national origin, language, sexual orientation, physical ability, political beliefs, socio-economic status, group identity, educational background, life experiences, and many other dimensions.
- Exploring differences and commonalities in a safe, respectful, and positive manner is essential in creating culturally competent legal scholars and professionals.
- Identification and elimination of bias is fundamental to creating an inclusive legal profession and justice system.
- Cultural competence is an essential skill-set if lawyers are to communicate, negotiate, and advocate effectively across differences.
The world we live in is changing faster than it has in the history of humankind. People are more connected, better educated and more emotionally literate. We are living in a global economy where every transaction is connected either online or offline between people from all over the world. Thus, it is far more difficult today to relate only with those people in your community. It is critical that you become culturally competent so you can successfully interact with students, staff and faculty.
Cultural competence development is a lifelong, gradual process that promotes respect and understanding of diverse cultures and social groups. We appreciate each individual’s unique attributes, furthering the awareness, attitudes, skills, knowledge and understanding of cultural similarities and differences. It is the ability to communicate with and effectively interact with people across cultures. For that, lawyers need to:
- Recognize cultural differences (AWARENESS)
- Learn what those differences are (KNOWLEDGE)
- Develop the ability to adjust their behavior to the cultural orientation of others (SKILLS)