Diversity in the College of Arts & Sciences
Dean Rhodes’ Statement on Diversity, equity & inclusion
The College of Arts & Sciences is a place of diverse talents, backgrounds, interests and experiences. This diversity — among our 19,000-plus undergraduate and graduate students and nearly 1,600 faculty and staff — is one of our greatest strengths. We know that when people with diverse backgrounds and perspectives come together, new ways of thinking and seeing the world emerge.
We want all members of our large and vibrant College community to know they belong here. The only way forward is to work together to create an environment in which all feel valued, respected, engaged and empowered. To this end, I am fortunate to have the support and guidance of my colleagues in the form of advisory committees, liaisons and administrative officers.
Since 2012, the College has had a director of faculty diversity initiatives and departmental diversity liaisons who address departmental and unit climate, faculty hiring and recruiting, and implementation of curricular changes and innovations that promote diversity and inclusion. In 2021, I announced that the College would be elevating the director of faculty diversity initiatives role to an associate dean for diversity, equity and inclusion position, effective July 1, 2021.
Founded in 2016, the Dean’s Faculty Diversity Advisory Committee includes representation from the three academic divisions of the College and advises me on matters of diversity and inclusiveness, with a focus on faculty and student experiences. In 2021, we will assemble a Staff Diversity Advisory Committee aimed at elevating the voice and agency of staff as we work to advance initiatives that promote a culture of inclusive excellence in the College. Together, this coalition of dedicated partners will inform our efforts to address problems and concerns related to systemic racism and equity and to create synergy among faculty, staff, and student diversity management efforts.
Matters of community, diversity, equity and inclusion have been a high priority for me throughout my career at Carolina, and will continue to be as I serve in the role of dean. I hope you will explore some of the ongoing initiatives and the many resources that we offer in the College that are designed for everyone to find their place here.