Resources after recent shootings

The senseless murders of two black men in Minnesota and Louisiana, and five police officers in Dallas, have had a strong impact on many in our community.  As we offer our deepest sympathies to their families and communities, Diversity and Multicultural Affairs wishes to advise that those individuals on campus who may be personally affected may be in need of support.  Many of you may have read the Message from the Chancellor, regarding resources available at Carolina to help us deal with the great emotional impact of these awful events.

UNC-Chapel Hill offers a number of resources for faculty, staff, and students.  As we all grapple with the shock of these latests attacks on innocent people, we urge anyone in need to reach out to the following outlets:

  • Counseling and Psychological Services – James A. Taylor Building, 320 Emergency Room Drive, 919-966-3658 (during regular business hours), 919-966-2281 (after hours),
  • Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer (LGBTQ) Center – SASB North, Suite 3226, 919-843-5376,
  • Equal Opportunity and Compliance (EOC) Office – 137 E. Franklin Street, Suite 404, 919-966-3576,
  • Employee Assistance Program – 877-314-5841 (24 hours a day),

This message is sponsored by Diversity and Multicultural Affairs, a division of Workforce Strategy, Equity and Engagement.


Register now for Achieving Carolina Excellence (ACE)

About Achieving Carolina Excellence (ACE)

ACE is a pre-orientation program designed to welcome new students to Carolina.  ACE will take place Thursday, August 18 – August 20, 2016. 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 18th.

Click here to register for ACE.



First Years and Transfer Students Invited to Jumpstart Year with ACE

Diversity and Multicultural Affairs will host Achieving Carolina Excellence (ACE), a pre-orientation program designed to welcome first year and transfer students to Carolina, August 18th-20th.  Designed to be the “big splash first event for underrepresented students,” according to Dr. Ada Wilson Suitt, Director of Inclusive Student Excellence, the program features a variety of activities geared towards easing students’ transition into a new campus environment as a Tar Heel.

Several hundred students will attend a full schedule of events that will provide them an opportunity to build relationships with award-winning faculty, as well as staff, and student leaders; bond with each other; and, engage in fun, interactive activities.  Items on the agenda include a classroom and building tour, a culture show, a campus scavenger hunt, field day, and a cookout.  While most events are centered solely on the students, there is a special session for families and each student is allowed to bring up to two guests to the opening session and luncheon at the Loudermilk Center’s Blue Zone to hear Dr. Damon Williams, Senior Vice President and Youth Development Officer at the Boys and Girls Club of America, speak.

“It is hard to identify one distinct part of the program as a highlight event because they all have value,” notes Wilson Suitt.  “For example, the keynote lecture is designed to spark academic curiosity and instill a culture of high expectations.  Similarly, the academic achievement session (this year hosted by Candice Powell from Undergraduate Retention) will provide students with the skills they need to thrive in and out of the classroom.  The culture show, field day and cookout offer students an opportunity to develop deep connections with current UNC students while also showcasing the rich diversity of the Carolina Community.”

For some students, this may not be their first exposure to campus life.  There are some who have also participated in either Project Uplift or North Carolina Renaissance, two Diversity and Multicultural Affairs summer institute enrichment programs designed to increase leadership strength and promote academic success in high school students from underserved populations who are contemplating higher education.  The high school to university pipeline set in place by Diversity and Multicultural Affairs is notable for its positive results.

ACE sets into motion a sense of continuity as a Tar Heel.  “Current and incoming students benefit from this special time to build bonds among peers and cultivate a community of support with faculty and staff,” notes Wilson Suitt.  “Many students maintain strong relationships with their ACE counselors throughout their first year.”

Now in its 20th year, ACE (initially called “Pre-Orientation” until its more upbeat name change two years ago), is supported by campus partners, who donate services towards ensuring that students feel part of the larger Carolina community.  Among the partners who will be hosting programs during the experience are the Center for Student Success and Academic Counseling, New Student and Carolina Programs, Academic Advising, Department of Housing and Residential Education, Undergraduate Retention, and the Department of Public SafetyIf you are interested in becoming a community partner, please contact Dr. Wilson Suitt at

The program is free, but registration is required.  Click here to register (deadline is July 29, 2016)

Related Links:

Previous ACE features: 

Resources in the Aftermath of Orlando Tragedy

In light of the recent tragedy in Orlando, Florida, Diversity and Multicultural Affairs acknowledges that individuals who may be personally affected by the horrible event may be in need of support.  Many of you may have read the Message from the Chancellor, regarding resources available at Carolina to help us deal with the shock in the aftermath of this awful event.

UNC-Chapel Hill offers a number of resources for faculty, staff, and students.  As we all grapple with the emotional impact of this latest attack on innocent people, we urge anyone in need to reach out to the following outlets:

  • Counseling and Psychological Services – James A. Taylor Building, 320 Emergency Room Drive, 919-966-2281,
  • Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer (LGBTQ) Center – SASB North, Suite 3226, 919-843-5376,
  • Equal Opportunity and Compliance (EOC) Office – 137 E. Franklin Street, Suite 404, 919-966-3576,
  • Employee Assistance Program – 877-314-5841 (24 hours a day),


This message is sponsored by Diversity and Multicultural Affairs, a division of Workforce Strategy, Equity and Engagement.

MSRC Internships Available

Numerous Minority Student Recruitment Committee (MSRC) work opportunities are available for current students:

  • Campus Visitation Coordinator (CVC)
  • Excellence and Initiatives Coordinator (EIC)
  • Latina/o Programs Coordinator (LPC)
  • Media and Public Relations Coordinator (MPRC)

if you are interested in any of the above positions, please click here to apply.

Diversity and Multicultural Affairs Office Operations

The following message was sent to campus diversity liaisons, UCIED members, and IDIC members by Felicia A. Washington, vice chancellor for workforce strategy, equity and engagement:

I am writing to follow up on Taffye Benson Clayton’s message to our diversity partners about her transition from Carolina to pursue another leadership opportunity.  We are grateful for Taffye’s years of service and her efforts and accomplishments in pursuit of the DMA motto: Enriching the Journey.  I know you join me in wishing only the best for her.

During this transitional period, DMA will continue to focus on the University’s commitment to fostering a welcoming and inclusive place for all in our community. In the near term, the work of the office remains focused on several time-sensitive summer programs and deliverables. Please continue to reach out to the DMA directors who lead the following areas:

  • Our many summer pipeline and welcome programs – including Project Uplift, Uplift PLUS, Achieving Carolina Excellence (ACE), and others – remain a highly visible sign of Carolina’s commitment to access and engagement.  Please direct any questions on such programs to Ada Wilson-Suitt ( Director of Inclusive Student Excellence.
  • Our campus diversity liaisons are currently compiling important information and data on diversity programming within schools and units, which will be used to complete the annual Diversity Plan Report to be released this fall. Please direct any remaining submissions or questions on the assessment to Xiaowen Qin (, Director of Diversity Research, Assessment, and Analytics.
  • Planning and staging for fall diversity educational offerings and programs, including THINKposium, continues.  Please contact Marco Barker (, Senior Director for Education, Operations, and Initiatives, with questions, requests, or suggestions.

We will also take this opportunity to evaluate diversity and inclusion efforts across campus and determine the most effective ways to lead and serve our campus community moving forward. As the process unfolds, we will invite the campus diversity liaisons and our faculty, staff and students to be part of those conversations. Stay tuned for more information.

In the meantime, if you have questions or need assistance outside of the areas listed above, please contact Becci Menghini (, Sr. Associate Vice Chancellor for Workforce Strategy Equity and Engagement, who serves as my chief of staff, to ensure that your requests and needs are appropriately managed. Further, if you’ve not already done so, I invite you to subscribe to Diversity in the News, DMA’s monthly newsletter, to stay connected to diversity and inclusion happenings at Carolina.

4th annual Diversity THINKposium comes in August

On August 17, 2016, from 9:00-3:00 PM, the 4th annual Diversity THINKposium will be held at Friday Center, UNC Chapel Hill. The THINKposium is meant to be a non-conventional approach to addressing diversity, inspiring action, and facilitating the solution-making process.

The day-long program is designed to allow participants to explore and understand the nature and impact of microaggressions in the higher education enterprise. Participants will explore language, behaviors, policies and practices that impact the classroom, workplace and educational experiences for students and faculty/staff at Carolina. The discussions and keynote 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 strategies for responding and positively disrupting in teaching/learning and the workplace.

This year, the keynote speaker will be Dr. Damon A. Williams, Senior Vice President for Programs, Training, and Youth Development for the Boys and Girls Clubs of America (BGCA). Dr. Williams is a scholar, leader, and educator passionate about making organization’s inclusive and excellent for all, creating equitable educational outcomes, and activating learning, youth development, and leadership in ways that are transformative and inspiring of new possibilities. He has authored or co-authored dozens of books, monographs, and articles and, is widely considered one of the nation’s most dynamic and innovative leaders, winning the 2013 National Association of Diversity Officers in Higher Education (NADOHE) Inclusive Excellence Award for Leadership, and serving as invited keynote speaker and thought leader to more than 300 institutions globally.

Prior to joining the BGCA, Dr. Williams served for five years as associate vice chancellor, vice provost, chief diversity officer, and member of the educational leadership and policy analysis faculty at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.  There, he founded the Division of Diversity, Equity, and Educational Achievement (DDEEA) a vertically integrated portfolio divisional infrastructure that includes one of the nation’s largest pre-college to college k-16 scholarship based pipeline development program (n=1300 students), the world’s only hip-hop urban arts scholarship program learning community (Office of Multicultural Arts Initiatives/First Wave), innovative campus-wide partnerships to enhance STEM achievement, leadership development of intercollegiate athletes (Beyond the Game), faculty diversification, research centers (Wei Lab), and a four-city partnership with the National Posse Foundation.

In addition to the keynote speaker, the day will also feature UNC faculty and staff who will share their efforts to addressing the issue within the classroom, clinical settings and in the workplace during the lunch “Diversity in Action” segment.

The THINKposium is free and registration is closed at this time. Refreshments and lunch will be provided. 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 (

The Diversity THINKposium is hosted by Diversity and Multicultural Affairs in collaboration with the College of Arts and Sciences and the Center for Faculty Excellence, and with financial support and contributions from multiple campus partners.

UNC-CH Ranks in Top 10 National Public Universities for African Americans

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill – a top public research university with a strong focus on access and affordability and high graduation rates – ranks ninth among the nation’s best public universities for African Americans, according to MONEY and Essence magazines. The publications collaborated to analyze more than 1,500 four-year colleges and universities to single out the ones that offer the best value for African-American students.

To determine the 50 Best Schools for African Americans, the methodology focused on colleges and universities that offer both high value and a supportive environment measuring factors including graduation rates, affordability, earnings potential and representation. Among both national public and private institutions of higher education, Carolina ranked 23rd overall.

We are pleased to be acknowledged as one of the top institutions of higher education for African American students,” said Taffye Benson Clayton, associate vice chancellor for Diversity and Multicultural Affairs and chief diversity officer. “As the nation’s first public university, with a distinct southern history and a global footprint, we are gratified by the growth and important milestones achieved in matters of race, diversity and inclusion at Carolina. We are encouraged by this recognition and aspire to accomplish even greater successes for African American students and all students on our campus.”

U.S. News and World Report has ranked Carolina in the top five of national public universities for 15 consecutive years and Kiplinger’s Personal Finance has ranked the university first among the 100 best U.S. public colleges and universities that offer high-quality academics at an affordable price 15 times. The University also features 325 study abroad programs in 70 countries and it ranks among the nation’s most successful public universities in attracting research funding from federal agencies.

Additionally, Carolina provides outstanding access and affordability through signature programs like Carolina Covenant, UNC-Chapel Hill’s over a decade-long promise to low-income youth who earn admission that they can graduate debt-free with help from grants, scholarships and work-study jobs.

The university’s Carolina Firsts program has also created a pathway of opportunity for the almost 20 percent of UNC-Chapel Hill undergraduates who are the first in their family to attend college.

About the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the nation’s first public university, is a global higher education leader known for innovative teaching, research and public service. A member of the prestigious Association of American Universities, Carolina regularly ranks as the best value for academic quality in U.S. public higher education. Now in its third century, the University offers 77 bachelor’s, 113 master’s, 68 doctorate and seven professional degree programs through 14 schools and the College of Arts and Sciences. Every day, faculty – including two Nobel laureates – staff and students shape their teaching, research and public service to meet North Carolina’s most pressing needs

Related links:

Campus Climate Survey Ends May 7

Carolina will conduct a survey of the climate for inclusion and diversity on campus from April 11 to May 7.

Staff and students will receive an email link to the Inclusion and Diversity Climate Survey. The staff survey takes approximately 20 minutes to complete. Both the undergraduate and graduate and professional student surveys take approximately 25–35 minutes to complete.  A paper version of the survey will be available in Burmese, Karen and Spanish.

The survey is one of seven actions that Chancellor Carol L. Folt shared last December that will help address concerns that students, faculty and staff raised during the Nov. 19 Town Hall on race and inclusion that drew nearly 900 people to Memorial Hall, said Felicia A. Washington, vice chancellor for workforce strategy, equity and engagement.

“Along with other University leaders, I am committed to creating an environment where everyone – students, faculty and staff – feels like they belong here,” Washington said. “It is not enough to say everyone has a right to be here. Our charge is to do all that we can to make everyone feel welcome – and engaged. This survey is just one tool that we can use to accomplish that.”

The survey is open to all students, both undergraduate and graduate, and all staff employees, whether permanent or temporary, Washington said. Faculty will receive a separate assessment that is focused on inclusion and diversity next academic year.

The survey will be administered by Higher Education Researcher Institute (HERI), a leading authority on institutional climate assessment with experience working with diverse learning environments.

The HERI research team will also hold focus groups in conjunction with the survey.

“We want everyone to participate in this survey,” Washington said. Several incentives being offered will encourage that participation.

All students who participate will receive a $5 Amazon gift card, while supplies last. All staff members will have their names placed in a drawing to win one of six iPad mini tablets.

“We want everybody, whether in their learning environment or their work environment, to feel a sense of belonging on this campus. This survey will help us learn what next steps are needed to ensure Carolina is that kind of place,” Washington said.

This is an updated version of the UNC Gazette story that ran on March 22, 2016

22nd National Health Equity Research Webcast to focus on political power

In its 22nd year, the National Health Equity Research Webcast, hosted by the Gillings School of Global Public Health in partnership with campus units will focus on the intersection of political power and health equity though the lens of voting, representation, and money.

The live broadcast will be aired on June 7th from 1:30 to 4:00PM from the Tate Turner Kuralt Auditorium in the School of Social Work. The webcast will feature a panel of three nationally recognized researchers and practitioners:

mthompson_downloadMildred Thompson, Senior Director and Director of the PolicyLink Center for Health Equity and Place – Thompson leads the organization’s health team, with work focusing on healthy food access, improving the built environment, and the systemic integration of health equity. A significant component of her work involves exploring community factors that impact health and identifying effective solutions. Prior to joining PolicyLink, she was director of community health services for Alameda County’s Public Health Department; director of Healthy Start; and director of the San Antonio Neighborhood Health Center. Mildred has degrees in nursing, psychology, and social work. She has taught at Mills College and San Francisco State University, and also worked as an organizational development consultant. Mildred is a frequent speaker on topics related to health equity and serves on several boards and commissions including The Zellerbach Family Foundation and she is co-chair of The Institute of Medicine’s Roundtable on the Promotion of Health Equity and Elimination of Health Disparities.

villegasMalia Villegas, Director, National Congress of American Indians Policy Research Center – Dr. Villegas is Sugpiaq/Alutiiq (Alaska Native) with family from Kodiak and Afognak Islands in Alaska and O’ahu and Lana’i in Hawai’i. She is an enrolled member of the Native Village of Afognak in Alaska. Malia earned her master’s degree and doctorate in Culture, Communities, and Education at Harvard University and completed her undergraduate studies at Stanford University. She developed extensive relationships in the South Pacific through her Fulbright-funded dissertation research in Aotearoa/New Zealand and Post-Doctoral Fellowship at the Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, Australia, serving as part of a team evaluating the first, national, longitudinal Indigenous education initiative since the 2008 Apology to the Stolen Generations – the Stronger Smarter Learning Communities Project that seeks to improve the leadership culture of schools serving Indigenous Australians.

Lydia CamarilloLydia Camarillo, Vice-President, Southwest Voter Registration Education Project – Camarillo plays a key role in developing and executing strategies for SVREP’s nonpartisan mobilization efforts. Lydia serves as Chair of the Texas Latino Redistricting Task Force. She serves as Chair of the Texas Senate Latino Caucus and Mexican American Legislative Caucus Civic Engagement Taskforce. Lydia serves on the board of directors for MPMC and ACLU of Texas, Audit and Development Committees. She has served on numerous boards and commissions including on the National Board of the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Los Angeles Based City Project, Latino Issues Forum, Monterey County United Way Allocations Committee, Immigrant Rights Coalition for the Central Coast, Santa Cruz County Affirmative Action Commission, Salinas Affirmative Action Committee and the California Task Force on Hispanics and the Civil Service. Lydia has a bachelor’s degree in sociology from the University of California at Santa Cruz.

Tom_Ross_300 2012President Emeritus, Professor of Public Law and Government, School of Government Thomas Warren Ross will serve as the moderator for this discussion. Ross joined the School of Government, then the Institute of Government, in 1975 as assistant professor of public law and government. He became a partner in a Greensboro law firm, chief of staff to a member of Congress, a superior court judge, director of the North Carolina Administrative Office of the Courts, executive director of the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation, president of Davidson College, and the fifth president of the 17-campus University of North Carolina system. He then returned to the School of Government in 2015 as professor of public law and government. Ross earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from Davidson and JD from UNC School of Law.

The annual live webcast is an interdisciplinary effort that builds on the expertise and support of UNC campus partners, community agencies, researchers and practitioners in health and education fields. The webcast appeals to organizations and individuals in North Carolina and across the nation with a focus on health equity, educational achievement and economic stabilization in all areas within our society.

Registration to view the broadcast as a studio audience or over the web will open soon. For more information about the National Health Equity Research Webcast, Click here