Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
Wily’s DEI and Anti-Racism Commitment

At the Wily Network our core values mobilize us to achieve our mission. We are a listening and learning organization, which is one of the reasons we consistently strive to deepen our understanding of how systemic bias and disparities impact the BIPOC community and other underrepresented groups. We address inequities by staying aware of how they manifest in and impact our organization and our community, and by taking action through advocacy, allyship, and anti-racism practices to ensure we’re acting in partnership with underrepresented communities.

Growing through Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

In 2020, Wily embarked on a transformative process to build diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) into the life of our organization. To lead us in this work, we engaged Kiera Penpeci, PsyD, an experienced organizational psychologist whose approach centers broader organizational systems and mental health to build and sustain a culture of inclusion and anti-racism. Dr. Penpeci led trainings for the Board and staff and held focus groups with Scholars to gather their feedback and reflections on Wily programs and culture.

Why is DEI important for Wily?

The values and concepts of DEI relate directly to our mission. Integrating them enables us to better serve Wily Scholars and to build a community where everyone—Scholars, staff members, volunteers, and community partners—feels welcomed and valued.

Kiera Penpeci The Wily Network

My hope for the future is that the Wily Network will become synonymous with anti-racism and inclusion, as an organization and as an employer, so that people from all walks of life will want to be a part of the pack.

Kiera Penpeci, PsyD, DEI consultant

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Three students wearing beige t-shirts with the outline of a woman from the shoulders up. The words "black lives matter" is visible as negative space in her curly hair, and her hoop earrings have the Wily logo inside them
The Wily Pack in Action

When one Scholar expressed her desire to have a Wily Black Lives Matter shirt, another Scholar jumped in to offer her artistic skills, and then another offered his website to promote the artwork.

Wily’s Black Scholars Affinity Group

Spearheaded by Wily Scholars in the spring of 2020, Wily’s Black Scholars Affinity Group was established to provide a safe space for students that identify as Black to freely and authentically engage in discussions regarding their experiences. Our hope is to share the highs and lows and build a support system that promotes empowerment and resiliency.

Tikia-Price

I love Wily’s Black Affinity Group. It’s so much fun getting to talk to other people outside my daily scheduled interactions. Ana is so bright and bubbly naturally – it’s contagious. We can talk about anything, which allows us to laugh about the situations we go through and relate to one another. The group provides a break from my scheduled tasks and a space to relax, vent and be spontaneous.

Tikia, Wily Scholar, Boston College
Ana

As a former Wily Network coach, I was eager to facilitate Wily’s Black Scholars Affinity Group. We must create safe spaces for Black students to breathe, thrive and freely engage in conversations about their experiences and address the complexities of racism, should they choose to. My goal for this group is for Black students to have a space to be their authentic selves, to feel seen, supported and celebrated.

Ana Ayobiojo, Black Affinity Group Facilitator and former Wily Scholar Coach

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