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Carter named to diversity, equity and inclusion post

Posted February 8, 2019
by Hannah Miller, communications intern


Dr. Shirley Staples Carter has been named associate dean for diversity, equity and inclusion for the College of Information and Communications.

Carter, a professor in the School of Journalism and Mass Communications, is the first to hold the position. She will represent both the SJMC and the School of Library and Information Science on the university’s Council of Academic Diversity Officers. In this capacity, she will work closely with Dr. John Dozier, the university’s associate provost for inclusion/chief diversity officer, to support and advance university equity, inclusion and diversity efforts based on three Focus Carolina 2023 initiatives: composition, achievement, and engagement and inclusion.

“We care about being a place where all students feel welcome and have an opportunity to thrive,” said Dean Tom Reichert. “Since joining our faculty in 2003, Dr. Carter has worked tirelessly to make this a reality. We’re looking forward to continued innovation and growth under her leadership.”

In her new role, Carter plans to collaborate with the college leadership to enhance the CIC’s diversity and inclusion efforts. She will also spearhead a number of events and initiatives, including the college’s inaugural Digital Media Academy this summer and its annual Diversity Research Panel in April. The appointment builds on the substantial work Carter has already done as the CIC’s representative to UofSC Diversity Council, chair of the SJMC Diversity Committee and former member of the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications.

“I feel honored to have been appointed to this role, and I am most excited about the opportunity to work with the CIC to create a vision and strategy to support our commitment to providing a diverse, welcoming, safe and inclusive learning, teaching and working environment,” Carter said.

“My vision is a shared vision embracing the ideas of the CIC leadership, faculty, staff and students,” Carter said. “I plan to incorporate the requirements for our two accrediting bodies — the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications and the American Library Association  and position the college and its schools as institutional and global leaders in inclusive excellence at UofSC.”

Carter has received numerous awards for her work in the community and as an educator, including the Charles E. Scripps Journalism Administrator of the Year Award, administered by the Scripps Howard Foundation and AEJMC, and a Mortar Board Teaching Excellence Award at UofSC. As a former president of ASJMC, Carter played an instrumental role in establishing the Journalism Leadership Institute for Diversity, a pipeline program to encourage women and people of color to take on leadership positions in higher education. She is also the author of several publications on women in leadership and diversity issues in higher education.

“This position fits my career path and allows me to continue contributing to diversity and inclusive excellence in the academy, community and industry,” Carter said.

Before joining the university as the SJMC’s first director 16 years ago, Carter served as director of the Elliott School of Communication at Wichita State University, and chaired communication programs at Norfolk State University, the University of North Florida and Prairie View A&M University. She received a Ph.D. in journalism from the University of Missouri, an M.A. in journalism from Ohio State University and a B.S. in English/secondary education from Tuskegee University.