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Diversity and Inclusion Planning

At our School, diversity and inclusion mean we welcome, value and learn from individual differences and perspectives. By cultivating inclusion within the School, we better prepare our students, faculty, and staff for the diverse world that awaits them. A globally-interconnected world needs culturally competent people to serve as its leaders. Diversity and inclusion are assets that contribute to our excellence.

Diversity and inclusion are essential components of academic excellence. They empower us to participate in a global community and model our institutional commitment to social justice, human dignity and peace. To address diversity and inclusion issues in a meaningful and significant manner, we formed a Diversity and Inclusion Task Force (DITF) in November 2010.

The DITF completed its report in September 2011 A smaller committee, called DITF-I (PDF) and comprised of volunteers from DITF, moved forward to help steer the implementation process through 2016. Currently, an all-volunteer Diversity and Inclusion Working Group facilitates and documents schoolwide diveristy and inclusion efforts. A sampling of actions taken to date include:

  • Approving the Dean’s Council Statement of Commitment
  • Developing diversity and inclusion committees within departments
  • Sharing best practices across departments, including admissions practices
  • Appointing Diversity Champion, Dr. Rumay Alexander, EdD, RN, clinical professor and director of multicultural affairs at the UNC School of Nursing
  • Hiring diversity recruitment specialist, Trinnette Cooper, MPH, to support our diversity outreach and recruitment programs and strengthened pipeline programs through the Summer Public Health Symposium for high school students (2012-present), Project IMHOTEP for juniors and seniors (2012-present) and regular outreach at pre-college, college and professional levels.
  • Strengthening ties to University resources.
  • Developing more courses with a strong focus on health of diverse populations.
  • Assessing admissions practices and adopting  best practices across programs.
  • Hiring additional experts to strengthen our support systems.
  • Developing a unified approach to addressing diversity, inclusion and cultural competencies in core courses through the Gillings MPH Core.

For more information, see a matrix of diversity, inclusion and equity efforts since 2011.


Task Force members represented the full spectrum of diversity reflected in the UNC-Chapel Hill statement about diversity, as well as a broad spectrum of roles, ranks, experiences, opinions and perspectives. A smaller Change Team, drawn from full Task Force membership, was created to examine Task force deliberations, conduct research and articulate the strategy document. The Task Force and Change Team were led by co-chairs Rumay Alexander, EdD, RN, clinical professor and director of multicultural affairs, School of Nursing, and Bryan Weiner, PhD, professor, health policy and management, UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health. In Summer 2016, a group of Gillings faculty, staff and students revived the efforts of the Diversity and Inclusion Task Force, forming a new committee with volunteers from across Gillings.



The September 2011 report:
Diversity and inclusion participant rosters:

Matrix of activities and efforts stemming from the DITF. 
If you have questions about the progress of the Task Force or would like to share your comments on diversity at our School, please contact:

263 Rosenau Hall
Campus Box 7400
Chapel Hill, NC 27599-7400
(919) 966-2499