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Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) recognizes that increasing representation and advancing inclusion is critical to our core mission of exploration and discovery in a diverse and connected world. It is not enough to state that we believe in diversity, equity, and inclusion. We need to take action to create a culture in which the voices of all people are fully heard and fully included, because it is the right thing to do. We recognize that there are many barriers facing people from traditionally marginalized groups and are committed to identifying and removing those barriers for richer academic discussion and a healthier research community.

Core Values

  • We value and commit to creating an intentionally welcoming, and inclusive community that prioritizes diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility
  • We are committed to identifying and removing barriers to access and success at WHOI and within the larger science, technical, and engineering community
  • We will be flexible in our approaches, embracing our innovative and entrepreneurial spirit
  • We will systematize accountability and transparency of these efforts

Focus Areas for 2024

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Improve recruitment, hiring, and admission processes to increase diversity at the institution.

Massachusetts Governor Maura Healey, flanked by members of her administration and regional representatives (from left, Lt. Gov. Kim Driscoll, State Rep. Dylan Fernandes, State Sen. Sue Moran, State Sen. Julian Cyr, Secretary of Energy & Environment Rebecca Tepper, and State Rep. David Vieira), addresses a crowd gathered outside WHOI’s Iselin high bay on March 16, 2023. (Photo by Joshua Qualls, Governor’s Press Office)


Provide education and development opportunities to employees on DEI-related topics to increase understanding, awareness, and cultural competence.


Programming and Partnerships

Promote diversity, equity, and inclusion through initiatives and partnerships with external organizations and communities.

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Track and analyze diversity metrics to measure progress, identify gaps, and inform decision-making.

Humans of WHOI

Workplace Climate/Culture

Foster a supportive and inclusive environment where all employees feel valued, respected, and empowered.

Land Acknowledgement

We collectively acknowledge that Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution is located on the unceded ancestral and contemporary land of the Wôpanâak (Wampanoag) peoples. We acknowledge the Mashpee, Aquinnah, Herring Pond, and Assonet Wampanoag Tribes as the original stewards and protectors of this land and surrounding waters. We recognize the perpetuated detrimental effects that systemic governmental oppressions have had on indigenous communities as a result of colonization. By offering this land acknowledgement we accept our responsibility to understand this history, invest in reconciliation, and build accountable partnerships with these communities.

This land acknowledgement was created with input from elders of the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe. While it is not compulsory, please feel free to use this text in the classroom, on your syllabus or when introducing events or research presentations on the WHOI campus, and invite your audience to learn more about the Wampanoag Nations today. More information can be found at the links on the right.


Recent Highlights

Broadening Minority Participation in STEM

Nevada Winrow, Founder, Black Girls Dive Foundation and Dijanna Figueroa, Chief Academic Officer, Black Girls Dive Foundation

Working Together: Traditional Ecological Knowledge & Environmental Stewardship

MaryJane Proulx, Exhibits Project Coordinator for the Canadian Canoe Museum

Gwyneth Packard, Senior Engineer, Applied Ocean Physics & Engineering

Erica Herrera, Graduate Student, Marine Chemistry & Geochemistry

Dan Lowenstein, Graduate Student, Marine Chemistry & Geochemistry