Campus Reform | Princeton implements 'supplier diversity action plan'

Princeton implements 'supplier diversity action plan'

Princeton University will seek to 'establish a more diverse supplier base' as part of its work to 'address systemic racism.'

The plan will ensure that the university includes 'more businesses that are at least 51% owned and operated by people of color, women, veterans or members of the LGBTQ+ community.'

Princeton University will seek to “establish a more diverse supplier base" and will try to "include more businesses that are at least 51% owned and operated by people of color, women, veterans or members of the LGBTQ+ community.”

In an update about the Ivy League school’s “ongoing efforts to address systemic racism,” Princeton President Christopher Eisgruber announced that the university’s Office of Finance and Treasury “has adopted a multi-year supplier diversity action plan.”

According to the update, the plan “aims to establish a more diverse supplier base for the University that will broaden the pool of supplier expertise, capabilities and perspectives, and include more businesses that are at least 51% owned and operated by people of color, women, veterans or members of the LGBTQ+ community.”

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The multi-year plan seeks to establish “more consistent and equitable engagement with diverse firms” and “greater integration of each supplier’s commitment to diversity into Princeton’s supplier selection process.”

Though Princeton spends over $500 million annually to procure goods from thousands of suppliers, roughly $49.6 million was used to support “diverse” suppliers in the last fiscal year.

In the near-term, Princeton will create and fill the role of “Supplier Diversity Manager” to coordinate the program and enlist a “diversity advisory firm” to assess program effectiveness. In the long-term, the university will “implement strategies to consolidate the current population of suppliers for select goods and services and promote them as the University’s preferred providers.”

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The university also laid out an extensive glossary of terms to define diverse organizations. For instance, an “LGBTE” is a “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender-Owned Business Enterprise,” with “LGBT persons” representing over 51 percent of owners and operators. An “MBE” is a “Minority Business Enterprise” is controlled by racial minorities who have at least “25% heritage” in one of the enumerated ethnic groups.

Nevertheless, the plan notes that Princeton must balance “sincere commitment to equity with the pragmatic reality that, even under optimal circumstances, firms that are not certified diverse will continue to comprise the majority of University suppliers.”

Campus Reform reached out to Princeton University for comment; this article will be updated accordingly.

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