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ODU works to identify and encourage programs that foster an appreciation of diversity.

The Old Dominion University Community is comprised of its faculty, staff, students, and volunteers. Together, members of the University Community are responsible for achieving diversity within all parts of campus, within University course work and research, and within areas outside the campus but within the reach and influence of Old Dominion University. Together it is important that we consciously act, as a means to achieve our goals.

Although there is always room to improve, the University actively supports the goal of University Commitment to diversity through its policies, procedures, and committees:

  • Old Dominion University Accessibility Committee
  • Old Dominion University Academic Advising Mission Statement
  • Old Dominion University ADA Policy and Procedures
  • Old Dominion University Annual Salary Equity Review
  • Old Dominion University Code of Ethics
  • Old Dominion University Discrimination Complaint Policy and Procedures
  • Old Dominion University Disruptive Behavior Policy for Faculty and Faculty Administrators
  • Old Dominion University President's Advisory Committee on Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action and Diversity
  • Old Dominion University Faculty Handbook
  • Old Dominion University Goals Statement
  • Old Dominion University Mission Statement
  • Old Dominion University Reaffirmation of University Policy Prohibiting Discrimination
  • Old Dominion University Resolution Supporting Intellectual Diversity
  • Old Dominion University Sexual Assault Policy
  • Old Dominion University Committee on Sexual Harassment
  • Old Dominion University Sexual Harassment Policy and Procedures
  • Old Dominion University Stalking Policy
  • Old Dominion University Standards of Conduct for Classified Employees
  • Old Dominion University Strategic Plan
  • Old Dominion University Student Disciplinary Policy and Procedures

ODU implements initiatives that foster an inclusive and supportive environment that values diversity.

Old Dominion University recognizes the value and opportunities created by diversity. As a result, the University is committed to its goal of creating and maintaining a climate conducive to success for all its members of the University Community. The University is composed of individuals with varied backgrounds and experiences, nationalities, ethnicities, and religions, physical, political, intellectual and emotional differences. These differences, and the way in which these differences are treated, encourages members of the University Community to reach their full potential.

Educational Accessibility

Individual members of the University Community who have, or suffer from, ADD/ADHD, medical disability, psychological disability, a specific learning disability, and/or Temporary mobility impairment may obtain accommodations. Old Dominion University Educational Accessibility aims to assist all students with disabilities in the pursuit of their educational objectives. Office staff works with faculty, administrators and students toward the goal of complying with legal mandates and integrating the student into a responsive campus community. Old Dominion University's Educational Accessibility strives to coordinate services that will enable students with disabilities to act as independently as possible in a supportive atmosphere that promotes self-reliance.

Financial Barriers

The Office of Student Financial Aid supports the mission of the University by enabling students and families to reduce or eliminate financial barriers that might prohibit their participation in the programs offered by Old Dominion University. The office administers need-based financial aid programs funded by Federal, State, University, and Private sources in the form of grants, Federal Direct Subsidized and Federal Perkins loans, employment, and need-and merit-based scholarships. The office also administers the Federal non-need based loan programs (Direct Unsubsidized and PLUS) and provides information and support to students interested in the alternative loan options available to them.

University Community members with special dietary needs

The Old Dominion University is understanding and supportive of those with special dietary requirements. Those who need a customized diet plan may meet with Old Dominion University register dieticians, to assist in identifying options available options.

Office of Counseling Services

The Office of Counseling Services is designed to provide a number of services, including academic coaching, career assessment, crisis intervention, consultation and a variety of workshops and presentations to assist members of the Old Dominion University community in reaching personal, academic, and career goals. Services are offered in an atmosphere that is welcoming and respectful of all students regardless of race, gender, ethnicity, age, sexual orientation, citizenship or physical status.

The Women’s Center

Serving the Old Dominion University community since 1976, the Women's Center offers programs and services to address the special challenges and opportunities women students encounter related to their personal and academic success. Also, recognizing the critical role that both women and men play in creating a world that is free of gender bias, our goals include promoting healthy relationships and a safe and equitable environment that is free of barriers to all persons. Center services seek to empower all students to achieve their personal, academic and professional potential.

Office of Intercultural Relations

The Office of Intercultural Relations (formerly known as Multicultural Student Services) is committed to creating a campus community that values and supports the cultural identities of each of our members. Through education and training, the Office of Intercultural Relations (OIR) creates opportunities that develop and enhance internal skills and competencies that foster an inclusive environment. OIR programs, activities, and events not only present unique and entertaining cultural experiences and celebrations, but also cultivates a climate of awareness, understanding, and respect of diverse individuals and groups.

International Student and Scholar Services

This service is responsible for providing support programs and advising services which help to ensure the academic and personal success of our international student scholar community. The Service also works closely with academic departments and administrative offices, offering workshops to staff members that help build awareness of the international community's needs as well as to develop and strengthen skills in intercultural communication. Through regular collaboration with other service offices, ISSS is part of the foundation that students and scholars can utilize to become fully integrated members of the Old Dominion University community.

Old Dominion University Library System

Incorporates a "Customer Service Standards" policy which includes nonjudgmental treatment of its customers.

The Old Dominion Library

The library collects and selects works published within paper and non-paper formats. Both classic and contemporary works are selected. Domestic and international works are selected. International works from Europe, Asia, North America, South America, Central America, Africa, Russia, and the Middle East are included. Although works written in English are predominate, the Library system also selects works in various other languages. The Library collects and selects works that have theoretical and/or practical emphasis.

The Old Dominion University Library Humanities International Complete Database

Provides full text of hundreds of journals, books and other published sources from around the world, many in their native language.

The Old Dominion University Library Gender Studies Database

Combines Women's Studies International and Men's Studies databases with the coverage of sexual diversity issues, providing the full spectrum of gender engaged scholarship inside and outside academia. Provides full text of hundred of journals, books and other published sources from around the world, many in their native language.

The Old Dominion University Library Economia y Negocios Database

This database provides coverage for over 300 Spanish and Portuguese language periodicals published in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Spain, the United States, and elsewhere. It is the result of a collaborative effort between EBSCO Publishing and ESAN (Escuela de Administracion de Negocios para Graduados)

The Old Dominion University Library Special Collections

Special Collections includes the University Archives, Manuscripts and books and printed material relating to Virginia and Tidewater History. The University Archives includes the non-current permanent records of the University, theses and dissertations, oral histories, year books, course catalogs, University publications, and photographs of yesterday and today. The Manuscripts area of Special Collections contains diaries, letters, legal and campaign files, photographs, and maps that document such subjects as the Civil War, Virginia politics, military history, African-American history, Norfolk urban redevelopment, women's history and local history. The goal of the Special Collections is to preserve and make accessible collections and records of historical importance to the University, region, state, and nation.

Old Dominion University Library Digital Collection celebrates the triumph of diversity

  1. School Desegregation in Norfolk, Virginia: Four years after the Brown v. Board of Education ruling in 1954, "massive resistance" to school desegregation in Virginia left 10,000 students out of school in Norfolk, the largest number of any school system in Virginia. Primary source materials from the Special Collections of the Old Dominion University Libraries document the activities of several prominent citizens in their efforts to reopen the public schools. These materials, now available digitally through this Web site, include the activities of the Norfolk School Board, the Norfolk Committee on Public Schools, an attorney representing the plaintiffs in the lawsuits initiated to reopen the schools, and a teacher. Information on Virginia's reaction to the Supreme Court's decision as a whole is also included.
  2. Oral Histories in the Perry Library: Oral histories provide important personal accounts of historical events. Over 100 oral histories are available on audio cassette in the Perry Library. Topics include University History, Women, Tidewater, Politics, Military, and Massive Resistance.

The Annual Literary Festival

The Old Dominion University Annual Literary Festival is designed to celebrate major writers, cultural diversity, and international perspectives. The diversity of readers, panels, workshops, and community involvement is on the Festival hallmarks.


Old Dominion University has been the site of five NCAA women's national championships including the 1982 and 1983 basketball "Final Four" and the 1985, 1986, and 2000 field hockey tournaments.

Old Dominion University was selected as one of 45 institutions nationally for the NCAA Pilot Certification Program, a pioneer program that looked at the athletic department's overall operations, including philosophy, academic requirements, competition, etc.

Old Dominion University was the first institution in Virginia to offer grants in aid for women athletes, beginning in 1974.

Old Dominion University has been the host site of four ICSA Sailing national championships, including the 1985 Team Race, Dinghy, Women 1993 Team Race, 2001 men's and women's singlehanded and the 2007 Women's Dinghy.

The Old Dominion University Office of Student Activities and Leadership

A major goal of the Old Dominion University Office of Student Activities and Leadership is to provide a comprehensive leadership program that addresses the needs of a diverse student population made up of emerging leaders and experienced leaders. Programs being offered by the Office of Student Activities and Leadership are designed to promote student involvement in campus activities and to empower them to be successful in the roles they assume during and after college. Some of the leadership services offered include: Leadership Lab; Diversity Lab; Town Hall Meetings; Student Leaders Award Programs; Summer Student Leader Retreat; Freshman Summer Institute; Leadership Institute Scholarships; Omicron Delta Kappa: Leadership Honor Society; Leadership Lecture Series; Leadership Library

The Old Dominion University Center for Service and Student Engagement

This Center provides opportunities for Old Dominion University students, faculty, and staff to volunteer and make a difference in the lives of others. The service theme promises to "enrich the quality of life for students by providing diverse educational opportunities for personal growth and development."

Student Organizations

Student Organizations, managed by the Old Dominion University Office of Student Activities and Leadership, are designed to provide students with opportunities to develop leadership and interpersonal skills. Because the University recognizes the wide-range of interests and passions within the diverse student body and University community, almost 200 student organizations exist. Examples of Student Clubs committed to fostering and encouraging the importance of diversity are listed later in this publication.

Old Dominion Safe Space Training Program

Designed to reduce homophobia/transphobia and heterosexism on the Old Dominion University campus. The goal of the program is that through education, advocacy, and awareness, the Safe Space Training Program will provide a campus climate that is open, safe, and accepting to all gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and queer/questioning people and allies.

The Old Dominion University Office of Institutional Equity and Diversity

The Office of Institutional Equity and Diversity is dedicated to eradicating discrimination and achieving equal opportunity for all.