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Diversity at Smith

The Smith School of Business is committed to recruiting processes that support diversity, equity, and inclusion. While building your brand on campus, consider ways that you can foster meaningful engagement with a variety of student groups. This page will provide you with some best practices to consider when recruiting at Smith and a list of the main student diversity groups. Please connect with your Relationship Manager to determine how to develop a diversity strategy as part of your engagement with Smith.

Best Practices

The following principles and practices are highlights from the EDII Best Practices through the Recruitment Cycle (PDF 104 KB).

Representing your Organization, Culture and EDII Practices Online

  • Ensure strong and visible commitment to EDII by the organization’s leadership. A CEO statement of commitment, outline of Employee Resource Groups, and a diversity news feed all show support.
  • Feature a diverse work force in your communications, including representation of senior leadership. The visibility of individuals from underrepresented groups in prominent roles positively influences students.
  • Ensure there is an informed education and outreach specialist to address student’s EDII-related questions. Be specific about why EDII is important to your business. Use strong examples rather than general statements.
  • Demonstrate the organization’s commitment to work/life balance by portraying senior leaders having a family and/or pursuing interests outside of the office.

Posting a Role to Attract Diverse Candidates and Encourage Inclusion

  • Advertise roles broadly to reach the wider student body. Ensure that you are promoting your organization across a variety of platforms and associations.
  • Post only the qualifications, experience, abilities, and skills necessary for the job. Be inclusive of all genders using unbiased and ungendered language.
  • Add key verbiage for attracting underrepresented groups. For example, ensure your posting is open to everyone and you can add that you encourage people who belong to underrepresented groups to apply.
  • If you are collecting data on applicants who identify as members of underrepresented groups, ensure you provide the proper privacy notice of the purpose of collection, how the data will be used and who has access to it. If you are not getting a diverse enough applicant base, extend the application deadline, or review the ad more critically for potential barriers/language and re-post it.

Interviewing to Eliminate Bias

  • Ensure a diverse hiring committee and provide EDII training for all interviewers that includes combating bias. Evaluate candidates using a pre-determined rubric that ranks the selection criteria. Retain rubric on all candidates. Ensure the same rubric is applied to all candidates.
  • Ensure that candidates who are not shortlisted in the process are treated with courtesy and respect by providing responses as swiftly as possible.
  • Consider having on-campus interviews. This eliminates inequities of access for on-campus students relative to the cost and time for travel. If interviewing off-campus, consider covering the costs for candidates to interview in person.
  • Offer interview information to the candidate in advance such as the types of questions, length of interview and interviewer names or positions.

Campus Diversity Initiatives

Over the years, firms have hosted a variety of successful diversity events that have been engaging, informative, and impactful.

  • Coffee chats
  • Panel discussions
  • Thought leadership events
  • Roundtables
  • Lunch-and-learns
  • Socials, dinners, and off-campus activities
  • CAC-hosted diversity fair in November

Student Groups


    • EDGE Leadership
      Program Target: Undergraduate
      Email: Anisha Wadhwa

      EDGE Queen’s is a sub-chapter of EDGE Diversity Leadership. We are a student-run non-profit organization that is focused on enabling the personal and professional growth of underrepresented students. We believe that representation contributes to the presence of diversity that is integral to the success of all reputable organizations. As such, EDGE Queen’s is committed to fostering more empowering, more inclusive environments within STEM and business fields.

    • Four Directions Indigenous Centre
      Program Target: All student groups and faculties
      Email: Four Directions Indigenous Centre email

      Four Directions Indigenous Centre strives to be a home away from home for Indigenous students and a site of information and support for the broader Queen’s community. It is a hub of activity and they welcome and encourage everyone to drop in and learn about the supports and services available.

    • Queen’s Conference on Indigenous Reconciliation (QCIR)
      Program Target: Business & Law
      Email: QCIR

      The Queen’s Conference on Indigenous Reconciliation was inspired by Andrée Cazabon's documentary Reconciliation on Bay Street. The conference focuses on economic Reconciliation and building positive relationships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people in business and in law. Whether you are a newcomer to these conversations, or you are already comfortable in this space, we believe you have something to offer and something to gain from this conference.

    • Smith Black Business Association
      Program Target: Undergraduate
      Email: Fo Ogundimbola

      The Smith Black Business Association seeks to eradicate the barriers that intervene with the prosperity of black people in the business industry and to provide a space that is both safe and welcoming, in which they can learn and grow.


    • Q+
      Program Target: Undergraduate
      Email: Daniel Liacos

      Q+ is a committee designed to allow the LGBTQ2S+ community at Smith School of Business to flourish. They offer support through recruiting opportunities, access to professional development and resources, and foster a strong LGBTQ2S+ community within the school. Q+ hosts events in Kingston and Toronto.

Women's Groups

  • Queen’s Women In Leadership (QWIL)
    Program Target: Undergraduate
    Email: Ashley Smith

    QWIL began over a decade ago as “Women in Finance”, hosting only 31 delegates. The continued success of the event allowed the conference to expand into “Queen’s Women in Leadership”, bringing together students, sponsors, and speakers for a weekend of innovation and inspiration. The conference has come to encompass young individuals from all fields, allowing them to share their experiences and celebrate their successes.

  • Smith Women in Finance (SWIF)
    Program Target: Masters-Level Women in Finance
    Email: SWIF

    Smith Women in Finance (SWIF) is a student-driven organization committed to the advancement of those who identify as women in the field of finance, fostering diversity and inclusion through community-building and professional development opportunities.

  • Women In Leadership (WIL)
    Program Target: MBA
    Email: Caitlin McGrath and Sarah Maiguwa

    The Women in Leadership group (WIL) is committed to promoting and empowering women in the MBA as they advance their careers through their academic pursuits at Smith. This group brings together employers, alumni, and students to share experiences and learn from each other.

Mental Health

    Program Target: Undergraduate
    Email: Meg Thomson

    Queen’s Commerce Mental Health Association (QCMHA) promotes the conversation of mental health and wellness throughout the Commerce community. A survey was sent out to the Commerce student body and 25% of students responded with a 4/5 or 5/5 when asked how often they felt their mental health has prevented them from reaching their full academic potential. It is clear that mental health is prevalent in our community, which is why QCMHA’s driven team is striving to push the conversation and end the stigma of mental health.