Participants at THINKposium workshop share a laugh

The annual THINKposium is a meeting of interested participants on a particular issue or topic, engaged speakers providing data and context, a free exchange of ideas, and fuel for creative problem solving. The program is led by the Chief Diversity Officer at Carolina and developed by a planning committee of members representing multiple units and departments.The THINKposium is meant to be a non-conventional approach to addressing diversity, inspiring action, and facilitating the solution-making process.

This year’s Keynote Speaker was Barbara L. Fredrickson, PhD, who presented on “The Positive Emotion of Social Connections.” Dr. Fredrickson has been advancing the science of positive emotions for more than 20 years. She is currently Kenan Distinguished Professor of Psychology at UNC-Chapel Hill, where she directs the PEP Lab. Her books, Positivity and Love 2.0, have been translated into more than 20 languages.

Dr. Fredrickson’s award-winning research, funded by the U.S National Institutes of Health, reveals how positive emotions were sculpted by the discerning chisel of Darwinian natural selection to serve as live-giving nutrients for growth. Her scientific contributions have influenced scholars and practitioners worldwide in disciplines ranging from business to healthcare and beyond, and have been recognized with numerous honors. These include the inaugural Templeton Prize in Positive Psychology from the American Psychological Association; the Career Trajectory Award from the Society of Experimental Social Psychology; the inaugural Christopher Peterson Gold Medal from the International Positive Psychology Association; and the Tang Prize for Achievements in Psychology, awarded to recognize exceptional career contributions to the well-being of humanity.

Who Should Attend?

Faculty, staff, and students, especially those who have roles related to advancing diversity within their departments; administrators on diversity committees, task forces or in positions related to access, support and retention for students, faculty and staff; and researchers whose research is related to workforce inclusion policy or practice. The session is free for attendees. Lunch and refreshments are provided.

What is a THINKposium?


  • A group operating at a high cognition level
  • Conduct research, provide consultation and advocacy
  • Solve complex problems and predict or plan future developments


  • Formal meeting or conference
  • Several speakers providing short addresses
  • Participants engaged in a free exchange of ideas


  • A meeting of interested participants on a particular issue or topic
  • Engaged speakers providing data and context
  • A free exchange of ideas
  • Fuel for creative problem-solving and positive action

The THINKposium is a non-conventional approach to addressing diversity, inspiring action, and facilitating the solution-making process. The 2018 THINKposium, Belonging…What a Feeling, highlights areas of critical interest for faculty and staff and provides participants with resources and professional development opportunities related to diversity. The THINKposium has been organized as an innovative and creative discussion on essential topics in diversity and provides information on the current state of diversity and opportunities for solution-sharing.


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