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What is the goal of diversity?

The goal of diversity is not to count people but to benefit from the best mix of people. The goal also is to attract people with an array of talents, experiences, and perspectives, and then empower them to give everything they have to a given situation.

What’s the difference between Affirmative Action and Diversity?

Diversity is not the same thing as Affirmative Action, though it addresses similar social concerns and has been nurtured by many of the same advocates. Diversity is different in two significant ways. First, Affirmative Action sprang into being because of ethical considerations grounded in a vision of the “level playing field.” Attaining EO/AA goals has required legislation and litigation. In contrast, diversity arises from an informed awareness of factors contributing to productivity from the mailroom to the boardroom. Diversity is not mandated. It requires no help from legislators and lawyers.

Second, Affirmative Action compels the identification and count of people on the basis of gender and heredity- Asian male, white female, etc. Granted, there may be a reason for doing things that way, but this is a narrow approach to the richly textured variety of human beings. Diversity avoids this narrow view. Diversity commitment says, “People differ in dozens of ways, and in their differences lie a wide variety of talents and perspectives.”

Are there different dimensions of diversity?

Yes, and they can be classified as:

Human Diversity
Characterized by virtue of the physicality or life experience of an individual. These include:

  • Race
  • Sex
  • Differently-Abled
  • Marital/Family Status
  • Sexual Orientation
  • Ethnicity
  • Age
  • Military Experience

Cultural Diversity
Characterized by fundamental beliefs, attitudes, assumptions, values, and personal characteristics. These include:

  • Language
  • Learning Style
  • Gender
  • Historical Differences
  • Cross-Cultural Relationship/Communication
  • Religion
  • Workstyle
  • Classism/Elitism
  • Ethics/Values
  • Lifestyle
  • Family-Friendly Practices

Systems Diversity
Characterized by the integration of organizational structures and management operating systems where differences are involved or implicit. These include:

  • Teamwork
  • Innovation
  • Reengineering
  • Strategic Alliances
  • Empowerment
  • Quality
  • Education
  • Corporate Acquisitions

Source: Gillory, W. A. (2001). The business of diversity: The case for action. (6th ed., pp. 10-11). Salt Lake City, UT:Innovations International, Inc.

What kinds of assistance does OMA provide?

OMA advises and gives professional guidance primarily to students from underrepresented groups at all levels and serves as a liaison to academic departments and student services. Assistance may be provided regarding:

  • Academic progressions and concerns
  • Students’ socialization into the academic sub-culture
  • Academic support and referral for related services
  • Advise to faculty, upon request, in curriculum development and revision

What percentage of students at the School of Nursing are students of color?

In 2006-2007, students of color comprise:

  • 21.4% of BSN students
  • 23.12% of MSN students
  • 39.5% of PhD students

What percentage of male students are at the SON?

Males comprise:

  • 10.4% of BSN students
  • 8.33% of MSN students
  • 12.5% of PhD students
  • 6.15% of the faculty
  • 18.39% of staff

How is diversity represented in the nursing workforce within the state of North Carolina?

Diversity in North Carolina:

  • 11.9% of the RN workforce comes from underrepresented groups
  • 6.3% of nurses are male
  • African Americans represent 21.6% of the state’s population and 8% of the nursing workforce
  • Hispanics are 4.7% of the state’s population and .06% of the nursing workforce
  • The Hispanic population in North Carolina over the last decade has had the largest rate of growth (393%) of any state in the nation

Need to contact OMA by mail or phone?

For general inquiries, write to:

Dr. Rumay Alexander, Director-Office of Multicultural Affairs
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
School of Nursing
Carrington Hall, CB #7460
Chapel Hill, NC 27599-7460

For general phone inquiries, call 919-966-7767
To send a facsimile,dial 919-966-1280

Have Other Questions?

Contact us via e-mail