The best ways for colleges and universities to meet the needs of students from a wide variety of cultural and economic backgrounds will be the subject of a Nov. 13 seminar at UNC-Chapel Hill. “Diversity in Higher Education: Inclusive Excellence in the Academy” will take place in morning and afternoon sessions at the Frank Porter Graham Student Union.
The seminar is free and open to the public, but online preregistration is required. The morning session from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in the Union auditorium features the keynote address and a panel discussion by leading scholars in this emerging field. The three afternoon sessions will run concurrently from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. in Union classrooms. Parking will be available at the Rams Head parking deck on campus.
“The Role of Diversity in 21st Century Higher Education” will be the keynote address by Pat Gurin, Nancy Cantor Distinguished Professor Emerita of Psychology and Women’s Studies at the University of Michigan. Gurin’s research concludes that students who experienced the most diversity in classroom settings and in informal interactions with peers showed the greatest engagement in active thinking processes, growth in intellectual engagement and motivation and growth in intellectual and academic skills.
In the panel discussion to follow, Jeffrey Millem of the University of Arizona, Thomas Nelson Laird of Indiana University and Abigail Panter and Charles Daye, both of UNC, will discuss ways to help a diverse group of students succeed and why diversity matters in higher education.
“We are very privileged to be hosting a group of national thought leaders whose evidence-based approach to this topic is so well regarded,” said Taffye Benson Clayton, vice provost for diversity and multicultural affairs. “What we hope to take away at the end of the day is a deeper understanding of the educational benefits of diversity in higher education.”