Moving “Upward” toward College Success

DSC03228Northwood High School rising seniors, Arturo Carmona and Kyla White spent their summer interning with Diversity and Multicultural Affairs through the Upward Bound program at UNC. Actively engaged in school clubs and organizations, this was their first professional experience. Each year, UNC’s Upward Bound program welcomes high school students from traditionally underrepresented low-income and first generation communities ranging from rising 9th graders to rising seniors. The program offers a tiered experience where rising 10th and 11th graders participate in the Pre-Bridge program; graduating seniors who have been admitted to UNC participate in a six-week Summer Bridge experience and rising seniors like Carmona and White are placed in an internship program.

This year 8 interns had the unique opportunity to intern at UNC. Placements include Diversity and Multicultural Affairs, University Development, UNC Athletics, Carolina Leadership Development, Career Services and UNC Global among others. “Participating in such programs and experiences are important because they teach life lessons and prepare students like me for what living in the real world will be like.” says Carmona, who was introduced to Upward Bound through a cousin who participated in the program and is currently a sophomore at UNC Pembroke. “She said it would be a good fit for me and I decided to apply, I am glad I did it.” This is the second year that DMA has hosted interns from Upward Bound in their office. Whether business, law, gaming or media; the program is designed to match student interest with the departments where they are placed. The internship looks to give raising seniors insight into their future careers and eventually aid with college applications.” says Donald Livingston who serves as the academic advisor of Upward Bound.

White entered the program being undecided about her future and spent her summer interning with the Director of Inclusive Student Excellence, Ada Wilson Suitt, J.D. She had the opportunity to develop research skills through exploring issues related to minority male and first generation student success and retention in Higher Education. Additionally, White practiced her public speaking skills by presenting her findings to staff members and tried her hand at legal matters- researching and drafting a liability waiver for DMA’s Achieving Carolina Excellence Field Day. In her last week of the internship White reflected, “My internship has conjured a new interest in law for me. I am excited in a bright new possibility – studying law is a possibility for me.”

While in DMA, Carmona made some important connections. Interested in in graphic design or computer science, he spent part of his internship taking an introductory course in Photoshop with Dr. Spencer Barnes at the School of Journalism and Mass Communication. Carmona was also part of a diversity education design project where he had weekly meetings, assisted with diversity educations trainings, and observing new student orientation sessions facilitated by Interactive Theatre Carolina and DMA. In his final week, he was provided with a resource list – tips, and online resources to increase his competencies and skills in design and to develop a competitive college application.

At the culmination of this internship experience Carmona had some advice for high school students who aspire to college:

“Open yourself and explore your choices. Don’t just blindly follow a career path that could inevitably leave you unhappy. Instead, continue to adventure, search for better opportunities, keep pushing forward, and climb to greater heights until you’ve truly found something you can stick with for the rest of your life that makes you happy and, to never give up on your dream.“


Upward Bound at UNC, a federal TRiO Program is a part of the Office of the Provost and has existed on Carolina’s campus since 1966. The program serves six area high schools. From Durham county- Hillside Tech High school and Southern High School; from Chatham county – Northwood High School, Jordan Matthews and Chatham Central High School and from Lee county – Lee Senior High School.

For more information on Diversity and Multicultural Affairs visit,


Terrell Strayhorn to deliver keynote for Diversity THINKposium and Achieving Carolina Excellence

“Research tells us thStrayhorn, Terrell 9-12at academic factors such as time spent studying, access to rigorous courses in high school, mastery of concepts of math and science and financial factors only account for about 40% of successful post-secondary outcomes…leaving 60% unexplained.” Reflects Dr. Terrell Lamont Strayhorn in a recent TEDx talk.

The nationally recognized speaker and scholar has been named “one of the most highly visible scholars in his field,” by the Journal of Blacks in Higher Education will deliver the keynote and opening session for the 3rd annual Diversity THINKposium to be held at UNC Chapel Hill on August 12, 2015. Strayhorn will also be the keynote for the 2015 Achieving Carolina Excellence (ACE), pre-orientation program designed to welcome new and transfer students from underrepresented populations and their families to Carolina on August 13 and 14, 2015.

“Students belonging in college – a factor often overlooked, accounts for a large percentage of successful post-secondary outcomes.”

UNC Diversity ThinkPosiumThe topic for this year’s THINKposium will be “Intersectionality: Unpacking the Interactions of Identities”. The day long program will provide participants tools and resources for using an inter-sectional framework to explore the multiple ways- race, class, gender and other aspects of identity interact with classroom, workplace and educational experiences for students and faculty/staff at Carolina. Registration for the THINKposium is now open and space is limited. The program will be held at the Carolina Inn and lunch is included.

“Only about 55% of the 19 million students enrolled in college will complete their degrees in 5 years and the numbers are startlingly lower for women and minorities.”

Strayhorn, a professor of higher education at The Ohio State University (OSU), where he also serves as director of the Center for Higher Education Enterprise (CHEE), senior research associate in the Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity and faculty affiliate in the Todd A. Bell National Resource Center on the African American Male and the Criminal Justice Research Center has focused his research and teaching interests center on two central issues: (a) assessing student learning and development outcomes and the ways in which college affects students and (b) identifying and understanding factors that enable or inhibit the success of historically underrepresented and misrepresented populations in education, with a particular accent on the experiences of racial/ethnic minorities, college men, economically disadvantaged individuals, and marginalized groups in postsecondary education.

In addition to the keynote, there will be two breakout sessions in the afternoon for participants to engage in a simulated interactive workshop led by Dr. Marcus Collins, Assistant Dean at the Center for Student Success and Academic Counseling and Dr. Tanya Shields, Associate Professor, Women’s and Gender Studies.

More about the Keynote: Strayhorn has additional faculty appointments in the Ohio State John Glenn College of Public Affairs, Department of African American and African Studies, and Education Policy, Engineering Education, and Sexuality Studies programs. He has received numerous national awards and honors, including the ASHE Early Career/Promising Scholar Award, ACPA Annuit Coeptis Award, among others. Diverse Issues in Higher Education named him one of the nation’s Top 12 Diversity Scholars, BusinessFirst Magazine named him one of the “Top 20 to Know in Education,” and he was named an ACPA Diamond Honoree in 2014.

Strayhorn is co-editor of Spectrum: A Journal on Black Men, published by Indiana University Press; former associate editor of the Journal of Higher Education and the NASAP Journal; and serves on the editorial boards of Journal of College Student Development, Journal of Student Affairs Research & Policy, The Review of Higher Education, College Student Affairs Journal, Journal of Black Sexuality and Relationships, and International Studies in Widening Participation, among others. Grants totaling more than $2.5 million have supported his research program, including funds from the U.S. Department of Education, National Science Foundation, and several professional associations.

THINKposium Workshop Facilitators:

Tanya Shields is an associate professor and Director of Undergraduate Studies in the Department of Women’s and Gender Studies and recent recipient of the Carolina Women’s Center Faculty Fellowship. Dr. Shields teaches classes on Caribbean women, the arts of activism, growing up girl globally, and the continuing influence of plantation economics and politics.  She is the current chair of the Association for Women Faculty and Professionals (AWFP) and a board member for the Maryland-based Carivision Community Theater, which seeks to use theater as space of exchange between Caribbean and U.S. theater audiences.

Sharbari Dey is the assistant director of education and special initiatives in diversity and Multicultural Affairs at UNC. She facilitates trainings and workshops for faculty, staff and students related to  implicit bias, cultural competency, hiring, tenure and promotion practices, and workplace climate and leadership development. In addition, Dey executes programs related to increasing diversity in education, access, and research in higher education. Her research interests include gender-based violence prevention, gender equity in higher education, undocumented student’s access to higher education and women’s leadership in higher education settings.

Achieving Carolina Excellence:

ACE is a pre-orientation program designed to welcome new students to Carolina. ACE will take place Thursday, August 13- Friday, August 14, 2015. ACE is designed to assist first year and transfer students from underrepresented populations with their transition to Carolina. Sessions include academic support services; breakout sessions; service learning projects; and cultural activities.   ACE participants will also meet University officials, faculty, and student leaders. There is also a special session for parents on Thursday, August 13th. Learn more about ACE and other Office of Diversity and Multicultural Affairs programs for current and prospective students at

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The Beginning of a Carolina Story

With temperatures hovering in the 90s, it’s now officially summer, but at Diversity and Multicultural Affairs (DMA) that doesn’t mean it is time to take a break – recruitment is in full swing. It’s Tuesday afternoon, two days before the start of the first week of Project Uplift and all the 80 student staff for Project Uplift gather in a DSC01898meeting room at the Student Union. Introductions of the leaders, reading off of task assignments, substitutions and calls for additional volunteers. Angel Washington ‘16, the on-campus programs coordinator and lead student staff for Project Uplift reminds her team, “Communicate with each other, have each other’s back, approach the lead coordinators with problems and remember- your attitude is everything.” Two days later, with a bullhorn in hand, Washington organizes the first session of Project Uplift’s nearly 300 high school students at the Top of Lenoir into neat little groups. The experience is in full swing as participants attend academic sessions with faculty and staff, meet with departments, and engage in this UNC immersion.

For over four decades, DMA and Undergraduate Admissions have hosted high-achieving rising seniors from historically underrepresented populations around the nation at UNC through Project Uplift and have provided a first-hand experience of undergraduate life. The program exposes participants to a typical day in the classroom, creates spaces to discuss personal challenges that may pose barriers to academic, social or even spiritual achievements; and, create opportunities for the students to network and interact with faculty, staff and current Carolina students.

Project Uplift’s undergraduate student staff take on the challenge of providing the students with a life changing experience that not only shapes their perspective on college but enhance their self-confidence and understanding of academic and social success. “My job is to know every little detail,” said Washington, in her second year of leading the program. In 2015, there were 80 student staff members and approximately 1,000 students who attended PU. Washington will have one more year in her role and is getting ready to select and train an intern to fill her shoes and continue the legacy of Project Uplift.

In addition, a few memBlueprintGroupSillybers of her team are getting ready to tackle the newest program on the recruitment block – Uplift PLUS. Uplift PLUS (UP) is a five-week, high impact program invitation-only program for students who successfully complete Project Uplift. High achieving, Project Uplift participants are invited to participate in the residential program based on their applications. Through a collaborative partnership with UNC Summer School, UP participants live on campus, attend SAT/ACT preparation programs and enroll in English 105 – a 3 credit hour course, and participants participate in sessions facilitated by campus partners and faculty members. The program is directed by Ada Wilson Suitt, director for Inclusive Student Excellence, but is primarily operated by eight student staff members with a lead student coordinator, Meshay Long (Cherokee)’ 16. the program has already seen success since its inception in 2014. Nine of the twelve Uplift PLUS participants from 2014 will be enrolling at UNC-CH this fall as part of the Class of 2019.

As summer slides into fall, the student counselors will go back to their course loads, but their work will continue to live on through the lives of the participants. “The impact that our summer staff members have on the students of Project Uplift and Uplift PLUS is immeasureable. From building confidence to developing academic capacity, the student staff make these summer experiences unforgettable,” said Wilson Suitt. “When the PU and UP alumni arrive at UNC this fall as Carolina students, they will reconnect with student staff members who changed their lives and officially become a part of the DMA family.”

For more information regarding these and other recruitment programs, visit

21st Health Equity Webcast addresses “Violence Prevention”

The communities know what they need. We need to listen to them first…” said Dr Pamela Jumper Thurman, as she advocated for taking into consideration and utilizing the existing resources within a community, the strength of the culture within the community, and the readiness of a community to engage and mobilize to build stronger and more effective efforts in both research and service to create a sustainable and community supported model for change. Thurman was one of the three panelists for the 2015 National Heath Equity Research Webcast and shared her experiences of working with marginalized communities especially native communities towards reducing interpersonal violence.

UNC Diversity and Multicultural Affairs and the Gillings School of Global Public Health at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill—in collaboration with numerous institutional partners—hosted the 21st National Health Equity Research Webcast on June 2, 2015. This live-audience webcast, hosted on UNC’s campus, in the Tate-Turner-Kuralt Auditorium of the School of Social Work, is an annual interactive, live-streamed symposium that explores the intersection of health, policy, and diversity through panel discussions with experts in their field followed by a question-and-answer segment. The webcast is an interdisciplinary and community effort with representatives from multiple campus departments and partner institutions formed to help build knowledge on health disparities and its impact on our local and global communities.

The topic for this year’s webcast was “Advancing a Community-Based Model for Violence Prevention and featured three twenty-minute presentations by panelists engaged in groundbreaking work around community-led action: Pamela Jumper Thurman, affiliate research professor, Ethnic Studies Department and National Center for Community Readiness at Colorado State University; Frank Perez, national program director for Cure Violence, and Leon T Andrews Jr, director for Race, Equity And Leadership (REAL) at the National League of Cities. The panel was moderated by Nia Wilson, executive director of SpiritHouse in Durham.

There are no easy answers to complex problems for violence prevention,” said Dean Jack Richman, UNC School of Social Work as he introduced the webcast. He highlighted projects where the School was making an impact in the state in addressing violence prevention in its many forms. The panelists framed violence in communities as a public health issue and provided examples of evidence–based practices from their organizations that are empowering communities, schools, and local organizations to prevent violence and discussed strategies to mobilize stakeholders by affirming strengths and encouraging culturally competent problem-solving.

A disproportionate number of black boys are dying because of violence…” said Andrews as he talked about the work of Cities United and Leaders Initiative, two initiatives through the National League of Cities, that are bringing together city mayors, community leaders, youth and local stakeholders to reduce violence in communities. Prior to the webcast, Andrews, moderator Wilson and planning committee member Dr Stephanie Baker-White shared their expertise on violence prevention strategies and the importance of community-based solutions on UNC-TV ‘s Black Issues Forum. The interview was aired on June 14, 2015 and can be viewed here.

Violence is contagious…it cannot be viewed as something the criminal justice system takes care of…” said Perez as he outlined the Cure Violence philosophy of shifting the paradigm of violence from a criminal justice issue to a public health issue, one with solutions. With over a decade of experience in working with undeserved communities in Chicago, Perez challenged the audience members to reflect on our bias towards incarcerated youth and their potential to be change-makers within their communities. Over a 150 live studio audience were joined by hundreds of viewers who tuned in from across the country to view the live broadcast.

The webcast was co-sponsored by the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research, Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute, Student Wellness, the Maya Angelou Center for Health Equity, Wake Forest UniversityCarolina Higher Education Opportunity Programs, Center for Health Equity Research, Gillings Global Gateway, UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health, School of Information and Library ScienceDepartment of Biostatistics, Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention, School of Social Work and the Community Academic Resources for Engaged Scholarship, North Carolina Translational and Clinical Sciences Institute.

To learn more about the webcast, its history and work, you can connect through Facebook (, Twitter ( or the website (

What Does a Diversity Liaison Do?

Nearly three dozen academic departments within the College of Arts and Sciences have a liaison—someone who is

tasked with both supporting minority students and working to hire scholars from underrepresented backgrounds for faculty positions.

The College’s diversity liaison program is an important step in recognizing the need to seek out scholars from underrepresented groups.

In the three years since the program’s inception, liaisons have worked to bring the topic of diversity to the forefront of their respective departments.

Past, Present and Future: Recent Grads and Current Students Welcome Prospective Students at Project Uplift

For the 46th year, recent graduates, current students, and staff will welcome high school juniors to Carolina for Project Uplift (PU). High-achieving rising seniors from historically underserved populations come to this signature program, hosted annually by UNC Diversity and Multicultural Affairs and Undergraduate Admissions. The first 2-night, 3-day session (out of the total of four consecutive weeks) included 317 students from counties throughout North Carolina and 21 out-of-state participants.

Lauren Mayfield, a third-year Project Uplift staff member and 2015 graduate, fondly remembers her time at PU in 2010. “[Project Uplift] was my first look at Carolina’s diversity. It’s easy to go to sessions and learn about how to get in to Carolina or succeed in classes, but those don’t show you what a day in the life of a Carolina student is like. What do you do once you leave class? How do you connect with other people? PU in 2010 just made me really excited. It made Carolina seem really cool. Everyone looked so happy.”

As a staff member, Mayfield strives to excite prospective students and recreate the vibe of her experience. “I have gotten here and I do love it; I’m one of those happy people. So conveying that energy—not just telling them how much I love my University, but showing them, and doing it alongside people who are just as enthusiastic—makes me proud of the legacy that I’m helping to create”

Participants will experience, first-hand, the classroom environment at Carolina and speak with professors, and will hear from career advisers and admissions staff. They will eat in the dining halls, walk the quads, learn about student life and enjoy the talents of the various multicultural groups and performance organizations on campus. But most importantly, they will learn what it means to be a Tar Heel.

Subsequent Project Uplift programs for 2015 will take place May 28-30, June 4-6, and June 11-13. Rising high school juniors should check with their guidance counselors in the fall for information about applying to be admitted to Project Uplift 2016.

3rd annual Diversity THINKposium to focus on “Intersectionality”

On August 12, 2015 from 9:00-3:00 PM, the 3rd annual Diversity THINKposium will be held at UNC Chapel Hill. Co-hosted by the Office of Diversity and Multicultural Affairs, the Center for Faculty Excellence and the College of Arts and Sciences, the THINKposium is meant to be a non-conventional approach to addressing diversity, inspiring action, and facilitating the solution-making process. This year we will be focusing on “Intersectionality: Unpacking the Interactions of Identities”.

The day long proUNC Diversity ThinkPosiumgram is designed to allow participants to explore and understand the nature and meaning of intersectionality. Participants will represent UNC faculty, staff, diversity liaisons, and others interested in or tasked with developing diversity initiatives at Carolina. Participants will apply an intersectional framework to explore the multiple ways- race, class, gender and other aspects of identity interact with classroom, workplace and educational experiences for students and faculty/staff at Carolina. The discussion should help them reflect on their own practices, understand the concepts and behaviors that perpetuate oppression of marginalized identities; and be part of facilitated conversations to develop capacity and skill to address the issue within their own units and departments. The program will include a keynote and concurrent workshops focusing on intersectional dynamics in teaching/learning and the workplace.

This year the keynote speaker will be Dr. Terrell Lamont Strayhorn, the Director of the Center for Higher Education Enterprise at The Ohio State University. Strayhorn is also Professor of Higher Education in the Department of Educational Studies within the College of Education and Human Ecology. Strayhorn is faculty affiliate in the Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race & Ethnicity, the Todd A. Bell National Resource Center on the African American Male, the Criminal Justice Research Center, and Penn GSE Center for MSIs. He has faculty appointments in the Ohio State John Glenn College of Public Affairs, Department of African American and African Studies, and Education Policy, Engineering Education, and Sexuality Studies programs.

The THINKpoisum is free but registration is required to participate. Refreshments and lunch will be provided. Register and save the date, we will update with more information as we come closer to August. You can also follow the latest updates and learn more through the facebook page (, or the website (

UNC Celebrates Multicultural Graduations and Ceremonies

In addition to Spring Commencement activities, the end of the academic year at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill provides an opportunity for the campus to recognize Carolina graduates who contribute to the diversity of the institution and their respective fields of study. In addition to the University Diversity Awards, Chancellor’s Awards, and Renwick Awards, there are a number of graduate ceremonies that reflect Carolina’s commitment to diversity.

Below is a listing of upcoming cultural recognition ceremonies.

Lavender Graduation

  • Date: Sunday, May 3, 2015
  • Time: 4:00 – 6:00 pm
  • Location: SASB North, Upendo
Alex Ferrando '06

Alex Ferrando ’06

Lavender Graduation is a commencement ceremony honoring Sexuality Studies minors, graduating LGBTIQ-identified students, and their allies. It is a cultural celebration that acknowledges the achievements and contributions that students of all sexual orientations, gender identities, and gender expressions have made.  The Advocacy Awards will also be presented to undergraduate and graduate students.

The keynote speaker will be Alex Ferrando. Ferrando graduated in 2006 with a BA in International Studies. During his time working with the LGBTQ Center, he volunteered on the Safe Zone Speaker’s Bureau and organized numerous on-campus events (one of which was the largest ever Drag Show, held in Memorial Hall).  In spring 2006, Alex orchestrated the first-ever Lavender Graduation celebration in order to recognize LGBTQ graduates, their allies, and Sexuality Studies minors.  Alex was one of the first-ever recipients of the UNC LGBTQ Advocacy Award.  Currently, Alex lives in Los Angeles.

UNC American Indian Center Commencement Ceremony and Reception

  • Date: Thursday, May 7, 2015
  • Time: 10:00 am – 12:00 noon
  • Location: George Watts Hill Alumni Center, Alumni Hall 1
Timothy McNeill, JD, MHA '92

Timothy McNeill, JD, MHA ’92

Every year, the UNC American Indian Center recognizes the accomplishments of American Indian students and students graduating with a degree in American Indian and Indigenous Studies. This event is being hosted by the UNC American Indian Center and is co-sponsored by American Indian and Indigenous Studies faculty within the American Studies Department.

The keynote speaker will be Tim McNeill (Lumbee). Timothy McNeill, a member of the Lumbee Tribe, is an entrepreneur and corporate attorney in Raleigh, NC. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from UNC-Pembroke followed by service as a commissioned officer in the United States Marine Corps.  Thereafter, McNeill earned a Master of Healthcare Administration degree from the UNC-Chapel Hill followed by executive level healthcare strategy and planning responsibilities in hospitals and health plans. After earning the Juris Doctorate degree at the University of Iowa College of Law, Mr. McNeill practiced healthcare law and civil litigation at RTP LAW, in Raleigh NC.  Since earning an LL.M in Law and Entrepreneurship from Duke University School of Law in 2013, Mr. McNeill advises and represents start-up and emerging growth companies in the healthcare, life sciences and finance industries.  Mr. McNeill also serves on the North Carolina American Indian Health Board.

Red, White & Carolina Blue Graduation Ceremony

  • Date: Friday, May 8, 2015
  • Time: 9:00 am
  • Location: Great Hall, Carolina Union

    Jacob Hinton '15

    Jacob Hinton ’15

Veterans, active duty service members, National Guard, Reservists, and ROTC commissionees participating in the spring 2015 commencement exercises are welcome to participate in the Red, White & Carolina Blue graduation ceremony. Along with keynote remarks from graduating senior Jacob Hinton, the program will include the presentation of colors and our National Anthem, remarks from students, administrators, and alumni, and the presentation of the Military Honor Cord. Light breakfast refreshments will follow the ceremony.

The dress code for this event is business casual or uniform optional (service dress/Class A).

Éxitos—Latina/o Graduation Ceremony

  • Date: Friday, May 8, 2015
  • Time: 4:00 – 7:00 pm
  • Location: FedEx Global Education Building, 4th Floor
Orlando Meléndez "00

Orlando Meléndez “00

Éxitos honors graduates who have worked to support and promote the Latino communities on campus, acknowledges the successes of Latino students, recognizes those who have supported the Latino community, and thanks those who have supported the students.

Speaking at Éxitos will be Orlando Meléndez, former Tar Heel men’s basketball player and the first Puerto Rico-born basketball player ever to play for the Harlem Globetrotters.


Carolina Focuses on Making Excellence Inclusive

Over 120 faculty, staff, and senior-level administrators gathered on UNC’s campus to engage professor, researcher, and expert Daryl Smith on issues and emerging trends related to institutionalizing diversity in higher education.  Smith, who serves as professor emerita at Claremont Graduate University, addressed the audience as part of Diversity and Multicultural Affairs’ Diversity in Higher Education Seminar. The purpose of the annual seminar is to highlight critical issues within higher education and facilitate campus-wide dialogue.

Dr. Daryl Smith

Dr. Daryl Smith

During her talk, titled “Exploring the Institutional Diversity Framework at Carolina,” Smith provided the historical and national context of diversity in the United States, provided a snapshot and review of diversity efforts, documents, and goals at Carolina, and presented opportunities for the institution to reframe its conversation on diversity, inclusion, and excellence. With attendees including members of diversity committees, diversity faculty liaisons, college and school deans, and senior cabinet members, the Carolina community took the opportunity to pose questions aimed at unpacking how we measure and articulate ‘progress.’

“Dr. Smith so eloquently and brilliantly captured and presented why diversity is critical to higher education and specifically, why it is essential to universities,” said Taffye Benson Clayton, associate vice chancellor and chief diversity officer in the university’s division of Workforce Strategy, Equity, and Engagement. “What made the event impactful was Daryl’s focus on Carolina’s specific history, mission, and academic plan and her ability to provide new ways for how our institution could position and frame inclusion and diversity as standard bearers of excellence.”

Another aspect of Smith’s presentation focused on seeing inclusive excellence and diversity just as ‘imperative’ as technology—a branch of knowledge that is synonymous with innovation and an ever-changing field that challenges institutions to respond, adapt, and integrate its developments into the institutional culture.

Introduced by the American Association of Colleges & Universities (AAC&U), the notion of Inclusive Excellence represents

“diversity and equity as fundamental goals of higher education and as resources for learning that are valuable for all students, vital to democracy and a democratic workforce and to the global position and wellbeing of the United States. AAC&U’s commitment to make excellence inclusive—to bring the benefits of liberal education to all students—is rooted deeply in commitment to a diverse, informed, and civically active society.”

Big Ideas on Inclusive Excellence and Diversity

Carolina’s effort to explore and build upon the inclusive excellence framework had already begun prior to the diversity seminar through the Provost’s Committee on Inclusive Excellence and Diversity (PCIED). A committee under Provost James Dean, PCIED represents an institution-wide group of faculty, staff, and students with the purpose of developing strategies for making excellence inclusive at Carolina. This group is charged to review and investigate diversity and inclusion at the institutional level and ultimately provide the Provost with recommendations for institutional transformation. The PCIED, chaired by Clayton, presented their outcomes or Five Big Ideas during the second-half of the seminar experience.

The FIVE Big IDEAS captured an initial strategy for Carolina to infuse diversity and inclusion in the fabric of the university. These ideas address five areas:

  • Communications & Marketing
  • Inter- and Intra-group Dialogue
  • Education
  • Institutional Leadership
  • Strategic Planning

Developing a working definition and identifying strategies will position all members of the Carolina community to be better equipped to “make excellence inclusive.”

Inclusive Excellence at Carolina

In an effort to capture the Inclusive Excellence framework at Carolina and provide the campus community with updates on the Five Big Ideas, a website has been created at

The Inclusive Excellence at Carolina website provides the campus and greater public with a framework for understanding and applying inclusive excellence in higher education. This is achieved through

  • clearly defining inclusive excellence and diversity;
  • outlining PCIED’s recommended strategies, implementation, and progress;
  • providing resources and opportunities for members of the Carolina community to engage; and
  • providing examples of inclusive excellence at Carolina.

The seminar was presented by DMA and sponsors included the Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

For more information about diversity efforts at UNC, please visit or contact DMA at

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