Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity

NIU celebrates diversity in all its forms, including gender, race, ethnicity, ability, spirituality, sexuality, age and all individual identities. We believe that engaging across differences enriches our students' learning and personal growth.

Our team is dedicated to furthering diversity and inclusion at NIU. We focus on recruiting faculty, staff and students who represent diverse communities and identities in our society, including, but not limited to, gender, age, sexual orientation, gender expression, gender identity, race, culture, ethnicity, spirituality and ability.

We work to align NIU processes with federal and state laws, as well as internal policies, regarding affirmative action and equal opportunity. In addition, we work with our community partners to provide an accessible campus environment for faculty, staff, and visitors.

Role and Responsibilities

Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity (AAEO) is the university-designated unit charged with oversight responsibility for equal employment opportunity at NIU. AAEO's duties include:

  • Developing, recommending, implementing and monitoring the current Affirmative Action Plan and equal employment opportunity policies for the university.
  • Communicating the policy and regulations to all offices and units of the university, as well as all members of the university community. This includes preparation and dissemination of rules and regulations pertaining to equal employment opportunity, and providing training and consultation to all university individuals involved in employment decisions.
  • Establishing procedures and monitoring employment decisions, such as search and selection committees, hiring, promotion and termination of employees.
  • Receiving, investigating and recommending remedies (when appropriate) of all complaints of discrimination in employment or educational services brought by university employees or students. This includes informal and formal complaints, advising and counseling of potential complainants, and mediating complaint resolution.
  • Assisting the designated attorneys and staff of the Office General Counsel with inquiries from external government agencies in regards to discrimination complaints that are filed directly with external agencies.
  • Seeking, outreaching and maintaining information on external agencies, community organizations and other groups that may be useful as notification points, referrals or recruitment of underrepresented groups. This includes advising hiring offices, actively disseminating information on vacancies, and liaising between diversity in employment resources and hiring officers.