Affirmative Action Policy

It is the policy of Holyoke Community College not to discriminate on the basis of race, color, age, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, religion, creed, ancestry, national origin, disability, veteran's status (including Vietnam-era veterans), or background in its educational programs, activities, or employment policies as required by Title IX of the 1972 Education Amendments and other federal and state anti-discrimination laws.

Policy Statement

The community colleges affirm the commitment to Affirmative Action and equal opportunity. The efforts are on behalf of women, minorities, the disabled, and persons at least 40 years of age, known as the "protected group." Affirmative Action will include those with veteran status when such status is considered part of the "protected group."

Community colleges truly committed to equal employment opportunity and Affirmative Action can go beyond developing policies and practices that prohibit employment discrimination on the basis of race, color, age, gender, sexual orientation, religion, national origin, or disability. They can take meaningful steps to recruit, hire, transfer, promote, and train women and minorities to enhance their representation.

Affirmative Action requires the college to do more than ensure employment and education neutrality. As the phrase implies, Affirmative Action requires the college to make positive efforts to educate, recruit, employ, and promote qualified members of the protected group who may have been excluded, even if that exclusion cannot be traced to particular discriminatory actions on the part of the college. The premise of the Affirmative Action concept is that  unless positive action is undertaken to overcome the effects of systemic institutional forms of exclusion and discrimination, a benign neutrality in employment and education practices will tend to perpetuate the status quo ante indefinitely.

The following specific policies are established:

  1. Affirmative Action and equal opportunity shall apply to all segments of the college; full- and part-time employment; day, evening and online; the curriculum and offerings of the college.
  2. Equal opportunity and Affirmative Action shall be applied to the recruitment process for employment and/or access to education.
  3. Students will have access to the college, programs of study, activities, and other resources intended to serve them, according to the policies of the individual colleges.
  4. Affirmative Action and equal employment opportunity will be realized in all personnel employment, including recruitment, application for employment, hiring, compensation, training, promotion, and termination.5. All policies, procedures, privileges, and conditions of the college will follow and incorporate applicable Affirmative Action and equal opportunity rules and regulations.

The above stated policies are intended to be broad on behalf of the protected group and the goal of promoting diversity in community colleges. The community colleges pledge to apply all policies consistently, fairly, and vigorously. Attempts to subvert or abuse these policies will not be tolerated. Appropriate action will be taken in the case of infraction. All policies are made in compliance with applicable laws and executive orders promulgated by the federal and state governments and other appropriate agencies and authorities.


Inquiries regarding compliance with Title IX may be directed to:
Idelia Smith
Affirmative Action Officer
Holyoke Community College
303 Homestead Avenue
Holyoke, MA 01040
(413) 552-222


Holyoke Community College
303 Homestead Ave. Holyoke, MA 01040
(413) 538-7000