Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Boy and girl walking out of Old Main

“At Franklin College, we push beyond a foundational education to help students grow into leaders capable of independent thought and innovation, ready to serve in our ever-changing, globally connected world.

Diversity, equity, inclusion and access are cornerstones of our ability to create leaders who act with empathy, sincerity and openness while respecting the dignity of self and others. Franklin College’s commitment to these cornerstones dates from its earliest days, when in 1842, just eight years after its founding, Franklin College became the first institution of higher education in Indiana to admit women and just the seventh in the nation to become coeducational. In 1902, a young man named Arthur Wilson became the first Black graduate of Franklin College and is the namesake for the Arthur Wilson Black Experience House.

What was true of Franklin College back then is true of Franklin College now: within our institution, differences must be celebrated, practices must be equitable, and a sense of belonging must be experienced by every member of the Franklin College community. The members of the Franklin College Board of Trustees commit themselves, separately and collectively, to upholding the values of diversity, equity, inclusion and access, in all aspects of our work on behalf of Franklin College, in order to strengthen our community and sustain a lifetime of personal, spiritual, intellectual and professional growth for all those connected to this great institution.”   

— Franklin College Board of Trustees


“Our obligation as a learning community is to engage the tough but necessary conversations which challenge bias and prejudice and together create a stronger, more unified, beautifully diverse nation. Our purpose is not simply to graduate educated citizens. It is to graduate leaders capable of and committed to making our communities, our states and our nation more fair, more just and more compassionate. That potential requires education, to be sure, but it also requires the courage to speak and the confidence to lead. Those are qualities we strive to help our students develop at Franklin College. The future of our world demands them.”

— President Kerry N. Prather


For more information on the efforts underway at Franklin College to pursue the goals expressed above, please click here.