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First things first, I must start by sending a huge congratulations to our own Bryan Johnson!
This past weekend Bryan, who serves as Associate Director of Admissions — Diversity Recruiting, received the prestigious Cornerstone Award for his work promoting diversity and inclusion at the University of Michigan.
The Cornerstone Award is given each year to U-M faculty and staff in recognition of an individual’s unique contributions and assistance to enhance the academic and social progress of African-American students at U-M. I am incredibly proud of Bryan and the incredible work he does each and every day on behalf of the applicants and students he recruits, and I want to invite you to join me in congratulating him on this honor. Thank you, Bryan!
Marcus Collins, a faculty member at Ross teaching in the marketing department, was also awarded the Cornerstone Award this year. Combined, these recognitions highlight that at Ross, one of the strengths of our community is the diversity of our student body. We believe that diversity - in every sense of the word — enhances the educational experience and prepares our students to lead diverse teams.
It starts at orientation, during which students learn about the multiple layers of one’s identity — visible and not visible — and building empathy and understanding across difference. It is supported structurally through the creation of diverse sections so that students can learn from the experiences and perspectives of people whose backgrounds are different from theirs. Diversity education and support is led by Taryn Petryk, our Director of Diversity and Inclusion, in partnership with the admissions team and the MBA Program Office.
Academically, it encompasses inclusive teaching workshops aimed at helping Ross faculty create and maintain classroom environments where all students can fully participate and thrive. These workshops also provide an opportunity for students to share their experiences with faculty.
It is embedded in the student experience through the creation of a VP of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) position with the MBA (Student) Council, and a DEI Student committee to assess and identify ways to make the MBA experience more inclusive. Each section also has inclusion chairs who strive to make the section experience inclusive.
And students have created events to foster understanding and build relationships across identity groups like Ross’ annual Diversity Week, which this year featured more than 15 thoughtfully designed programs sponsored by 20 clubs. Topics included what to do when you notice power imbalances in action, understanding how diversity and culture differences manifest themselves in marketing campaigns, uncovering the history of drag culture, and learning how to make a Korean seafood pancake.
Diversity is a priority for our entire community — administration, faculty and students alike.
We’re also hitting the road this month meeting candidates for next year (I promise I let the Admissions team take vacations!) It may seem early in the process but these events are great ways for candidates to hear admissions tips as they start their application journey and also ask questions of alumni who lived the MBA experience.
Check out our calendar for events in May and June across the world in cities like New York, DC, Tel Aviv, London, and Paris.