Diversity & Inclusion
At ESA, we value justice, equity, diversity and inclusion. Collaborating with colleagues from a variety of backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives leads to better solutions and opportunities for everyone.
We celebrate the differences—age, color, physical ability, ethnicity, family or marital status, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, language, national origin, race, religion, veteran status, and other characteristics—that make each of us unique. ESA’s culture is built on mutual respect, recognizing that the collective sum of our individual differences and life experiences fosters our continued success and achievement, for our employee-owners and our clients.
Ongoing Learning and Education
ESA is committed to furthering and fostering Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI). In 2017, we established a Diversity Committee—in addition to managing our scholarship program (more on that below), the committee develops speaker series each year and curates a monthly all-staff JEDI newsletter. We’ve taken additional steps to ensure all employees feel supported at ESA by creating a number of employee resource groups for Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) and LGBTQ+ employee-owners, and have diligently integrated JEDI practices into every aspect of our business from our recruiting and onboarding to training our managers and including personal JEDI goals in our performance evaluations. This effort includes specific field safety guidance documents that directly address racism, bias, and micro-aggressions. We’ve also made JEDI a pillar of our five-year strategic plan—ensuring our commitment is carried from within our firm and out to the communities in which we live and work.
ESA Scholarship Program
As part of our 50th anniversary, ESA’s Diversity Committee launched a scholarship program to provide financial assistance to underrepresented individuals who are pursuing a career in any one of the many professional fields represented at ESA—environmental science, planning, or engineering. Each year, we partner with a different organization, and provide $10,000 in scholarship funds to their established programs, ensuring that we can continually rotate through ESA’s practice areas and geographic regions. Click the year below to meet the recipients and learn more about the partner organizations:
Educational Outreach and Internship Program
ESA’s Educational Outreach and Internship Program (EOI Program) engages diverse students from historically excluded groups to the environmental field as a means to develop their skills as future environmental professionals.
The paid Internship Program focuses specifically on providing participants with real-world training in the environmental field, connecting interns to a network of professionals within the environmental industry, and providing an overview of working specifically in private consulting. Open internship positions are posted on our Career Portal. If you don’t see any current openings, feel free to apply through our General Application for future consideration.
ESA Anti-Racism and JEDI Commitment Statement
ESA will uphold the individual human rights of every employee regardless of race or ethnicity. We are committed to creating and sustaining an equitable and inclusive culture at ESA – a culture where all employees are treated with respect, kindness, and fairness, and everyone feels safe, welcome, and valued. Equally, we are committed to creating and sustaining a diverse organization with diversity reflected at all levels of the firm. To advance Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI) beyond the firm, we will use our skills, expertise, and resources – both through the work we do with clients and directly within our communities – to address persistent, interrelated issues of racial justice, social equity, and environmental justice.
Fulfilling these commitments to advancing JEDI broadly and anti-racism specifically requires deliberate, sustained effort by the firm as well as the individual efforts of all our employee owners. ESA commits to the following principles that reside at the core of our efforts:
- Recognize and challenge how inherent and systemic advantages afforded to white people on the basis of race manifest at ESA
- Identify and break down the barriers for ESA’s Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) employee owners in our firm and within our profession
- Identify and acknowledge our mistakes and use them as opportunities for learning
- Provide opportunities for the voices of BIPOC colleagues at ESA to be heard equally by seeking their direct input to share their perspective, experiences and recommendations