Each program class has 10 scholars—recruited from a national pool—who
serve two-year appointments. The program has graduated 132 scholars. Of
those, 24 now work for Carolina; 17 hold appointments at other North
Carolina universities.
These graduates include:
Barbara Williams, the first African American astrophysicist and an
Associate Professor at the University of Delaware;
Juliette Bell, Provost and Vice Chancellor at Fayetteville State University
in North Carolina; and
Robin D.G. Kelley, Professor of History and American Studies and Ethnicity
at the University of Southern California, and regarded as one of the nation’s
preeminent scholars in African American history.
The program was championed by the late Phil Manire, Vice Chancellor
and Dean of the Graduate School, who came up with the idea in response to a
shortage of minority faculty in the 1980s. The concept was so good that it was
endorsed in the university’s budget process and received funding from the
North Carolina General Assembly. It was an innovative approach for one
institution to take in addressing this continuing national problem.
That takes me back to the university’s mission statement, which also says
we will serve the nation, and we will “address, as appropriate, regional, national
and international needs.”
In North Carolina globalization is not an abstraction. Globalization has
benefited the state in some ways, but has also caused very painful job losses,
especially in furniture and textile manufacturing. IBM is a large local employer
in the Research Triangle, with thousands of employees. Some are Carolina
graduates; some are the parents of Carolina students. Not that many years ago,
when IBM announced it was sending a number of local jobs to India, people in
the Triangle area of North Carolina took notice. It was another signal that global
competition is not just about furniture, textiles, and the old underpinnings of
our state’s economy. It’s also about services and high-tech work—the knowledge
economy. How will our students compete in this economy?
We think the richest marketplace of ideas results when we have a faculty and
student body—and a library staff—characterized by great intellectual curiosity
and aptitude—and also by diverse life experiences and backgrounds.
Those are among the reasons that diversity matters at the University of
North Carolina at Chapel Hill. We recognize that our success depends on our
RLI 263 4
Diversity in Research Universities
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C O N T I N U E D
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APRIL 2009 RESEARCH LIBRARY ISSUES: A BIMONTHLY REPORT FROM ARL, CNI, AND SPARC
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