Campbell Shares Early Vision, Initiatives

In addition to her opening remarks, Campbell also presented a Writing and Wellbeing workshop at NMU's UNITED Conference

NMU's new Assistant Vice President for Diversity and Inclusion, Shawnrece Campbell, has hit the ground running since her official start date in January. In both her update at Wednesday's university forum and the opening remarks she delivered at Thursday's UNITED Conference, she highlighted new initiatives and future directions based on campus conversations she has had early in her tenure.

Campbell shared with forum attendees that she has launched an Assistant Vice President of Diversity and Inclusion Fellows Program.

“This will involve faculty members partnering with the senior administration to increase faculty involvement in the areas of diversity, identify needed areas of support, work with student affinity groups and work on projects and initiatives to advance inclusion and belonging on campus,” Campbell said. “The goal of the program is to provide exceptional faculty members with a more expansive range of leadership experiences at the campus level.”

Fellows will be eligible for the following: up to 12 credits of reassigned time per academic year, with replacement costs covered by her office; funding to continue their involvement over the summer; and a modest discretionary travel and/or training budget. Applications are being accepted through April 10. The appointment is for two years, but may be extended, if warranted.

Campbell is making herself available to speak in classes twice a month. She offered to address diversity and inclusion at NMU, or one of her research areas: food is medicine, writing and well-being, or 20th century African-American literature and culture. She also reported that she has initiated the search for an assistant director to fill a vacancy, and that she is planning a summer 2025 well-being retreat for national BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and People of Color) higher education leaders that will be hosted by NMU and highlight the U.P. outdoors.

In her opening remarks at the UNITED Conference, Campbell shared her initial vision and direction related to enhancing diversity and inclusion at NMU. She said the university has documented that it hosts about 60 related events and activities each year.

“But few people seem to realize that, so we can be more intentional about our diversity and inclusion work in a way that increases awareness across campus and in the community about what we are doing, why we are doing it and how to get involved,” she said.

“We can also build more inclusive and culturally responsive curricula, as that helps prepare students for the world they will be leading, living and working in when they leave NMU. And we can prioritize working with our local communities and underrepresented student and employee groups to support them with the resources that they need to thrive at NMU.”

Campbell's appointment aligns with NMU's core values and strategic priorities. She was formerly the competency-based project director and coordinator at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, where she also served as dean of liberal arts and director of art, music & communications.  

Learn more about NMU Diversity and Inclusion here.

Prepared By

Kristi Evans
News Director