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A Monumental and Multicultural Task

A Monumental and Multicultural Task

Happy New Year! I hope everyone had a safe and happy holiday season and is looking forward to the spring semester. In what has become an annual tradition, we present to you in this first issue of the year “Emerging Scholars” edition. For the past five years, we have featured young scholars representing a variety of disciplines and institutions. Recognized for their innovative research, outstanding teaching and/or mentorship, those profiled have been recommended by colleagues, department chairs, university public information officers and others. After further research, review and debate, the editors of Diverse select 10 scholars from the numerous names submitted — not an easy task I might add.

Our longtime readers will notice the obvious difference in this annual edition — the diversity. As Black Issues In Higher Education, we primarily recognized Black scholars, but with our expanded focus, this group is truly multicultural.

I do not jest when I say that selecting the 10 scholars every year is difficult. There are a number of impressive, amazing, accomplished scholars in the academy who, considering their relatively young ages, have earned the respect of their colleagues. The scholars certainly earn our respect, as around this time every year those of us on staff begin to feel like underachievers! Do these scholars sleep, we ask? Aren’t there just 24 hours in a day?

These scholars obviously maximize their time, and are incredibly focused and determined. Regardless of your age, you’ll find this year’s scholars to be inspiring. The passion and enthusiasm they exude about their scholarship is contagious, making you realize how rewarding it is to love what you do.

No toiling away in isolation for these scholars. They want their research to have practical applications, and they believe that their work can and will enlighten and improve the lives of others.

We have a great lineup this year — from anthropology to neurobiology — this is an intriguing group. The neurobiologist who had the opportunity to join the renowned Alvin Ailey Dance Company, the higher education professor who initially preferred beaches to books, the law professor who graduated from high school with a 1.8 GPA — they don’t fit the stereotypes of the stuffy scholar.

The fact that we don’t all graduate at the top of our class or know what our career path will be at age 10 and yet still can go on to publish several books or conduct groundbreaking research means that we’re constantly evolving.

Sometimes our paths are unexpected and unplanned; we are inspired and influenced by our family, friends and mentors. The scholars’ individual stories highlight that there is no correct prescription and exact roadmap for “success.” What you need, however, seems to be heavy doses of perseverance, self-confidence and passion. A deep well of energy would help, too!

We hope you enjoy reading this edition, and if there’s a scholar you would like to nominate for 2007, it’s never too early to send me an e-mail at [email protected].

Hilary Hurd Anyaso

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