The James G. Martin Center for Academic Renewal has an obsession with Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.
In a July 10 post, the Center breathlessly declared, “Chapel Hill’s DEI Obsession Was Mandated at the Top: The Martin Center has uncovered a startling email from the chancellor’s office.”
In tones that echo UFO conspiracists, the post said DEI plans at UNC “may be traceable to an email sent on behalf of UNC Chancellor Kevin Guskiewicz in July 2020. The Martin Center obtained a copy of the email via a public records request last month and was startled to find an explicit directive that every Chapel Hill school or unit ‘submit measurable deliverables around diversity and inclusion initiatives’.”
Our response: So what?
DEI initiatives promote fair treatment and full participation of all people, particularly groups that have been underrepresented or discriminated against.
Thirty years ago, as President of Sara Lee Corporation, Paul Fulton – one of our coalition’s founders and Chair of Higher Ed Works – wrote:
“What does strategic diversity really mean? I believe it means creating an environment that is attractive to and embraces a culturally diverse work force. It requires a management and peer attitude that recognizes that each employee has the ability to contribute to the enterprise, and that each has different needs and will require different types of support to succeed.
“The real goal of managing for strategic diversity is to enable all members of the work force, no matter who they are, where they came from, or how different they might be, to perform to their full potential. At Sara Lee, we see this as a goal that is absolutely consistent with our financial goals, because we must have the participation of all of our people if we are to continue to be successful.”
The Martin Center continually attacks our university. We eagerly await the day they say something positive about one of North Carolina’s most valuable assets.