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A Conversation With The New DEI Director

A Conversation With The New DEI Director

A Conversation With The New DEI Director


Mr. Daymyen Layne, newly appointed Director of DEI.

Features Editor

September 28, 2023

Ethan Shin '25

After 20 years on college campuses, Mr. Daymyen Layne is excited to serve as the new Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion for the school. He has spent the first few weeks getting acquainted with students and school traditions and looks forward to bringing positive change in students’ development. Mr. Layne is confident that Hotchkiss will continue to promote belonging through everything from food in the Dining Hall to faculty members who reflect the diversity of the student body. He aims to educate and inspire students to support each other and create a passionate, inclusive community. 

What led you to Hotchkiss? What are some of your first impressions of our school? 

As educators, we often question if we are making enough impact or the right kind of impact on students. After spending 20 years in my career on college campuses, I was intrigued by the prospect of making that impact on students a bit earlier in their student development process. Hotchkiss provided a fantastic opportunity for me to do just that. One of my early impressions of Hotchkiss is that there is a rich culture and history here that people care deeply about. Engaging in traditions that happen around opening days, such as matriculation, and having opportunities to share tidbits of wisdom during orientation were delightful moments. 

What are the main aspects of your work as the Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion? 

Education, impact, and visibility. At Hotchkiss, we talk about belonging and trying to cultivate an environment where students feel safe, seen and supported. It is partly my job to execute on that, at an institutional level. We have to be strategic about how we choose to do inclusion at Hotchkiss. There are a lot of components to that, from representing cultural food and traditions at school to trying to ensure that we are recruiting and retaining faculty and staff that reflect the rich diversity we have in our community. 

What are you excited about this year? 

I’m excited about getting to learn what Hotchkiss is really all about, figuring out what the campus’ needs are, and working with our administration to address them. This is an exciting time at Hotchkiss with lots of changes in the administration, but I truly feel that we have strong leaders at the helm. I’ve been appreciative of just how thoughtful our team is about their work at Hotchkiss. 

What are some of your goals for the year? 

One of the goals that I have for the year, besides listening and learning, is focusing on strategic work around how our community members engages with one another. Civic discourse is a skill that we all need to brush up on as we grapple with and make sense of what’s happening in the world. Focusing on emotional intelligence will be key to the human aspects of the DEI office’s work. Furthermore, I hope to demystify some of the work that is “DEI.” Fundamentally, we’re focused on caring about the person that sits across from you or next to you. That is what I want to cultivate more deeply here. 

What changes, if any, do you hope to bring about this school year? 

AA great mentor of mine works with the motto: “Do good work. Treat people well.” I look forward to bringing that mantra with me to the school. I hope to bring about a deeper understanding of what diversity is, as it is so much greater than just ethnicity. It is ability, it is gender, it is all of the pieces of our social identity and the intersections

Ethan Shin is a features editor for The Record.

November 16th

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Editor's Note: This article was recovered from The Record's online archive. There may be stylistic and visual errors that interrupt the reading experience, as well as missing photos. To read this article as it appeared in print, view our print archives.

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Editorials are written by members of The Record's Executive Board. They typically center on issues related to the school or student life on campus.

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