Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

HMI welcomes students and employees of all socio-economic, religious, racial, geographical, and ethnic backgrounds as well as all gender identities and levels of previous outdoor experiences. Diversity in all its senses makes us a better school, and we hope all who come through our doors feel welcomed and affirmed.

Student Profile: Gabby Feizbakhsh 

HMI Diversity and Inclusion Statement

The High Mountain Institute believes that both diversity and inclusion are essential to growth and learning. We all achieve our potential when each person in the community feels a true sense of belonging, and has the confidence to express their full self.

At HMI, inclusiveness starts with an intentional and affirming community. Creating such a community is our priority. We connect deeply to each other through classes, wilderness expeditions, and shared responsibilities. We prioritize open communication and honest conflict resolution. These efforts inspire us to build trust, to value diverging perspectives, and to build communities greater than ourselves.

Historically, however, outdoor programs like HMI have attracted largely white and privileged populations. At times, this has made it challenging for all at our school to feel fully part of our community. We seek to address these challenges at HMI by increasing the diversity of our students, faculty, staff, trustees, and advisers; by creating classes and activities that explore and reflect students’ identities; by expanding the cultural competence of faculty and staff; and by continually challenging the assumptions we hold.

We engage with this challenging work because we are committed to building an exceptional learning environment rooted in community—not just for some, but for all who seek to be inspired by the natural world.

Ongoing diversity and inclusion initiatives at HMI

Growing our commitment to financial aid

Diversifying our faculty and staff

Launching the Identity Series

Expanding faculty and staff professional development, specifically in the field of cultural competency and equity education

Marketing our programs to a more diverse audience

Working to make our campus and curriculum less gender binary