Four African Americans Who Are Taking on Diversity Roles in Higher Education

Alesia LeSane was promoted to assistant director for multicultural education and student success in the Office of Diversity, Inclusion, and Multicultural Education at Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Massachusetts. She was an undergraduate admissions officer with a focus on recruitment initiatives on diversity, equity, and inclusion.

LeSane holds a bachelor’s degree in communications with a minor in community and justice studies from Allegheny College in Meadville, Pennsylvania.

Carl Ervin was named interim director of the Office of Justice, Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity at Western Illinois University. He has been serving as assistant director of the university’s Multicultural Center.

Ervin earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from Illinois State University. He holds a master’s degree in education/counseling and guidance from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater.

Renita Miller was named the inaugural chief diversity, equity, and inclusion officer for the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. She has been serving as the associate dean of access, diversity, and inclusion and the executive director of the Presidential Pre-Doctoral Fellowship Initiative at Princeton University. Prior to this role, Dr. Miller was the John B. Madden Dean of Berkeley College at Yale University.

Dr. Miller holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Baylor University in Waco, Texas. She earned a master’s degree and a Ph.D. in political science from Rice University in Houston.

Michelle Santana is the inaugural chief diversity officer at Neumann University in Aston, Pennsylvania. Since 2021, she had been serving as coordinator of diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives at Neumann University. Dr. Santana has also been a faculty member in nursing at the university.

Dr. Santana earned a bachelor’s degree in nursing from Neumann University. She holds a master’s degree in nursing from Drexel University in Philadelphia and a doctorate in nursing from Grand Canyon University.

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