WCU Chancellor addresses campus diversity issues

Western Carolina University’s Chancellor, David Belcher, proposed his three-point plan at increasing diversity and inclusion on campus during a one-on-one interview Tuesday, April 12.

Belcher said providing information about campus policies, engaging people in conversation and using feedback to create a list of approaches is his plan to make WCU more diverse.

“What I’m trying to do here, what my team’s trying to do here is to be open, to listen and to work with anybody on our campus who wants to talk about how we can be…a better version of ourselves,” Belcher said.

The university has taken steps to address diversity concerns after racist posts on social media circulated around campus in early March.

See related: Students & faculty protest to bring awareness to racial tensions at WCU

University administration held a series of campus discussion groups over the past two weeks. Students, faculty and staff members were invited to engage in open and honest dialogue that will help the university create a long-term plan for diversity.

The university is preparing and searching for a long-term solution to diversity and inclusion on campus, Belcher said.

Starting June 1, 2016, Ricardo Nazario-Colon from Morehead State University will take office as WCU’s first ever chief diversity officer. “I have a lot to learn. I am a white male…I have my own unique perspective and what I’m trying to do right now is understand.”

See below for Chancellor Belcher’s thoughts on diversity and inclusion at WCU.