Diversity & Inclusion Academy

About the Diversity & Inclusion Academy

Your diversity and inclusion efforts can be a heavy lift, in fact it’s one of the top challenges for many of our members. It takes hard work to make bold changes and it is easy to get overwhelmed.

That is why, in addition to our other D&I programs, we have created the D&I Academy for business leaders and their staff who understand the benefits of a D&I strategy and are interested in starting a program in their organization.  See More Below.


  • Virtual sessions include 4, 2-hour classes
  • Facilitated by Sesha Yalamanchili, On the Mark Consulting
  • Only program like this offered to businesses in the region  
  • Cost effective:
    • Only $599 per seat* – Member Pricing
    • Non-Member Pricing $1,198/seat
      • Note: this does not include the $167 for Racial Equity Impact Analysis Training (REIAT) that is required if registrant has not already taken the training
      • REIAT Training is a requirement of all Academy applicants. Training dates will take place before and after the Academy. Either time frame is acceptable. Dates will be made available to you.
    • Interested in membership? Visit: https://www.thepartnership.org/connect/membership/
      Or contact: Lbenkovich@thepartnership.org 716.868.6866

  • SHRM Credits: These classes are valid for PDCs for the SHRM-CP® or SHRM-SCP®

The Fall Academy is full and we are now taking applications for January & February 2021.

Wednesdays from 8:00-10:00: 1/13, 1/27, 2/10, 2/24

Seats are filling up quickly – Act today!

To reserve your seat, please complete the short application.  We will reach out to you with additional information.


Understanding there is not one magic solution, we show you how to navigate the challenging diversity and inclusion landscape to arrive at a multi-tiered strategy to move your organization forward. This 4-part program provides a distinct Academy to guide leaders like you through a systematic and thorough examination of your organization across these four key areas of diversity and inclusion:

One: Get clear on your organization’s case for diversity and inclusion and use it to unify everyone around a common purpose.

Two: Identify your biggest opportunities to create a fully diverse workforce by improving your processes and practices for hiring, retaining, developing, and advancing talent.

Three: Find ways to create organization wide awareness of unconscious biases and develop plans to actively mitigate their harmful effects.

Four: Determine how your organization’s unique cultural norms and ingrained work habits need to change for better inclusion.


Each part of the D&I Academy is designed to empower you to focus on where you are today with diversity and inclusion and to identify the biggest areas for improvements that need to be made for lasting effect.

We work in a confidential setting with peer support to help you:

  • Dig deeper to accurately diagnose and eliminate sources of institutional bias
  • Create accountability and measure and use data to set clear goals for making an impact
  • Establish company-wide objectives to maximize participation and generate support and buy-in throughout the entire organization
  • Examine the cultural practices and norms that need to change to foster better inclusion
  • Look closely at your role as a leader in creating diversity and inclusion – and pinpoint opportunities for greater impact and change

Each organization is different and so each D&I strategy needs to be different in order to be successful. The D&I Academy goes beyond prescribing one-size-fits-all solutions for your diversity and inclusion efforts. Yes, we will use a systematic approach and examine best practices, but this will be the inspiration and the structure to figure out what works best for your organization’s unique needs.

Many organizations have hopeful intentions in diversity and inclusion efforts, but the fear of getting it wrong gets in the way. The D&I Academy helps you turn those good intentions into action that will make an impact in your organization. Don’t miss this opportunity. Contact us today.

Current Participants

Click the button below to access the portal where supplemental documents will be posted after each session.

This page is password protected.  If you are a current participant and lost your password, please contact Charlene Janiga CJaniga@thepartnership.org.

Thank You to Our Sponsors

Verizon Media

From the Blog

By Claire Petrie, MBA, PHR, SHRM-CP The Buffalo Niagara Partnership’s Diversity & Inclusion Virtual Learning Series is coming up! As you
By Claire Petrie, MBA, PHR, SHRM-CP The Buffalo Niagara Partnership’s Diversity & Inclusion Virtual Learning Series is coming up!   I’m