ability to attract the brightest minds from all backgrounds and experiences to
join our community of faculty, staff, and students.
Our commitment to diversity ensures that Carolina continues to be a place
where students will leave excited by the possibilities of a diverse and global
society, and where faculty and staff will be eager to share their talents.
I was very fortunate to be part of a chancellor-led university delegation
that participated in a summit at the University of Texas at Austin in 2004.
These events were designed to explore how students, faculty, and staff could
systematically develop skills and knowledge relevant to effective work across
cultural boundaries. The conference was informative, and I believe we made a
positive contribution to it. But more important was the opportunity for our
delegation to reflect on the current state of
diversity on our own campus during our
travels and time together. Those were
galvanizing conversations, and they
motivated then-Chancellor James Moeser to convene a broad-based campus-
wide task force on diversity.
In accepting the task force report’s recommendations (2005), the chancellor
announced specific initiatives to help the university communicate its commit-
ment to diversity and annually monitor progress. Also tied to the task force
report was the appointment of an associate provost for diversity and multi-
cultural affairs. The intent was to signal an expanded effort to improve upon
what we were already doing well so that the campus community could become
even more diverse and inclusive. This report was generally well received. It
didn’t make our campus perfect overnight, and I will be the first to say we still
have a lot of work to do. But taking the time and effort to convene campus
leaders and to have serious conversations about doing better says a lot,
I think, about our campus culture.
Since that report was released, the university has made a major effort to
focus on access and affordability for low-income students from North Carolina
and around the country.
Through the Carolina Covenant, we have promised to provide admitted
students from low-income families the full cost of their education so they can
graduate debt-free. They must satisfy all of the normal admissions requirements.
These students are admitted on a need-, gender-, and race-blind basis. Then they
are considered for the Carolina Covenant program. As part of their admission,
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Diversity in Research Libraries
C O N T I N U E D
APRIL 2009 RESEARCH LIBRARY ISSUES: A BIMONTHLY REPORT FROM ARL, CNI, AND SPARC
It is the cumulative effect of many initiatives
that makes the difference we seek.