In May 2016, Sumi shared her insight with on how to champion diversity and inclusion in businesses.

Key Takeaways:
1) Don't buy into the myths
2) Train any and all hiring committees in bias reduction
3) Ask your employees how to implement change, and listen to them
4) Designate someone to lead the charge, but hold everyone accountable
5) Develop and implement a cross-divisional mentoring program

The HMC Office of Institutional Diversity (OID) continues efforts to ensure an inclusive and welcoming campus environment for all students. Sumi Pendakur, Harvey Mudd's Associate Dean for Institutional Diversity,  spoke with Insight Into Diversity about the College's cultural competency programs, including "Building Bridges: Pathway to Action," a six-week seminar series designed to help students gain a complex understanding of their own identities and amplify cultural competence and communication skills.


In January 2016, the Athenaeum held a panel to discuss possible structures for the diversity and inclusion resource center at Claremont McKenna College. The speakers primarily focused on how different campuses have instituted and structured similar spaces for marginalized students. The ultimate goal of the dinner panel was to present and discuss potential outlines for the initiative at CMC.

The three panelist were Sumun Pendakur, the Associate Dean for Institutional Diversity at Harvey Mudd College; Mariana Cruz, CMC’s diversity consultant and former Chief Diversity Officer at Amherst College; and Yuka Ogino, the Assistant Director of Scripps Communities of Resources and Empowerment (SCORE). Claremont McKenna’s Chief Civil Rights Officer, Nyree Gray, moderated the discussion.

In May 2011, Sumi was presented with the Dissertation of the Year Award for “The Search for Transformative Agents: The Counter-Institutional Positioning of Faculty and Staff at an Elite University.”


Sumun Pendakur (Weinberg '98), who participated in the hunger strike as a freshman, spoke about her role in the Asian American Advisory Board, the movement that pushed for the creation of the Asian American Studies Program.