The Only Thing Constant Is Change
Change is hard. Behind the scenes at Cox, Matthews and Associates, I can tell you that helping manage the shift from Black Issues In Higher Education to Diverse has presented considerable challenges for the staff here in Fairfax, Va. It’s been a fascinating process that has required heroic efforts from my colleagues, and it will continue to do so as we move forward from this ambitious launch.
In our inaugural issue, we thought it would be fitting to have a panel of distinguished scholars and higher education leaders shed some light on how they interpret diversity in American higher education. Not surprisingly, the subject of diversity proved to generate so much dialogue that we had to present it to you in two parts. In this issue, we feature the second part of that discussion in “Dissecting Diversity, Part II.”
In “All About the Mission,” assistant editor Kendra Hamilton details in a fascinating profile of Berea College that Kentucky institution’s long history of diversity and inclusion. From its founding in 1855, Berea College educated Blacks and Whites alongside each other in what was a brave and radical experiment for a college in the South prior to the Civil War. Despite its forced closure during the Civil War, and Jim Crow-era state laws banning interracial education, Berea College managed to return to its visionary roots in the civil rights period.
The racially diverse school now practices what no other highly competitive academic institution in the United States would dare contemplate. It enrolls a student body within which every student requires some form of financial aid. Going beyond being a model of racial and ethnic diversity with its students and faculty, Berea offers a shining example of how a higher education institution can provide quality college education to students who are the least able to afford it.
Online editor Shilpa Banerji provides an intriguing look at Harvard University psychologist Dr. Mahzarin R. Banaji, one of the developers of the Implicit Association Test. The IAT, as Banerji reports, uncovers social biases a test taker may harbor yet not consciously acknowledge. Some three million people have taken the test since it has gone online.
Writer Ann Farmer reports in “From the Inner City to the Elite” about Vassar College’s Exploring Transfer program, which exposes socially disadvantaged community college students to life at a four-year institution. In 21 years, the program has helped attract some 100 students to enroll at Vassar, while 800 to 900 have gone on to other four-year institutions.
We hope you enjoy this second edition of Diverse. We heard from several of you prior to the publication of the first issue. How do you like our new look and expanded focus? Send me an e-mail at email@example.com to let me know.
Hilary Hurd Anyaso
© Copyright 2005 by DiverseEducation.com