Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

The Office of Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion

The Office also champions the importance of a diverse and inclusive scholarly university campus community by engaging students, faculty, students, and alumni to build a welcoming and inclusive academic and social environment.  We welcome everyone to consider ways in which we can collaborate to realize the University’s Strategic Diversity and Inclusion Plan and a more inclusive campus.


Our mission is to provide education, programming, and resources that address and support the diverse range of identities, voices, and lived experiences of our students, faculty, and staff.  We are committed to more diverse representation in leadership roles and our learning spaces.  This requires the development and implementation of policies, procedures, and processes that reflect our commitment to an equitable and inclusive campus.


Welcome, acknowledge, respect, and value diverse lived experiences, and create a campus environment that is inclusive of all.


Integrity. Respect. Service. Collaboration.

Contact email: ddei@una.edu

A Message from the

Vice President for Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion

Mr. Ron Patterson

Mr. Ron Patterson

Welcome the University of North Alabama and the Division of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.  The Division, comprised of 5 centers/departments/programs, includes the Center for Women’s Studies, Disability Support Services, Mitchell-West Center for Social Inclusion, Military & Veterans Service Center, and Presidential Mentors Academy.  We program activities, programs, and events focused on diversity, equity, and inclusion.  We are committed to providing an environment within our campus and community that values lived experiences, free inquiry, respect for others, knowledge, and a global context for which embarks on a path to a welcoming and inclusive environment.

We hope you consider learning more about our division so you can follow your passion.  If you would like additional information about the Division or any of our centers, departments, or programs, please contact ddei@una.edu

Roar Lions,

Ron Patterson, EdS

Vice President for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Lecturer of Education


Center for Women’s Studies

Center for Women's Studies

Center for Women’s Studies (CWS) was established in 2004 to educate the campus and Shoals community about women’s and gender issues. Unlike other campus Women’s Resource Centers, the CWS is a “hybrid” center that coordinates the interdisciplinary Women’s Studies minor and sponsors programs, presentations, and exhibits that focus on the topics of women & gender—providing informational programs concerning gender-based violence is of special importance. Additionally, CWS sponsors two RSOs (UNA Student Chapter of AAUW and the Women’s and Gender Studies Association) and is an inclusive social center that welcomes all students, faculty, staff, and community members.

Contact email: larieff@una.edu

Military & Veterans Service Center

Military and Veterans Service Center

The Military & Veterans Service Center was established in 2016 to better serve Military Connected Student Veterans and Dependents. The Center is staffed with 1 full-time member and up to 5 Student Veterans utilizing Federal VA work-study funding. While the Center was designed to provide Veterans with a relaxing and friendly safe-haven, where non-traditional Student Veterans can congregate with their peers as they integrate into university life.  However, the center welcomes all students, faculty and staff to utilize the facility regardless of any military or veteran experiences.  The ultimate goal is the advancement the common good and to support education, research, community, and advocacy by working with Student Veterans and Dependents. The center houses the Veterans’ Affairs Coordinator, who also serves as the university School Certifying Official for Federal GI Bill processing.  Available Services include; student lounge, computer lab, and study area/classroom.

Contact email: dmcclain2@una.edu

Mitchell-West Center for Social Inclusion

Mitchell-West Center for Social Inclusion Center

Mitchell-West Center for Social Inclusion was established in 2019 with the aim of advancing the common good and support education, research, community, and advocacy by working with diverse groups on campus, in the Shoals, and across the state and region. The Center welcomes everyone by providing an accessible and inclusive space for students, faculty, and staff to share knowledge, collaborate on interdisciplinary projects, and build sustainable partnerships with organizations that are committed to addressing some of the most pressing social problems that we face today.

Contact email: socialinclusion@una.edu


Disability Support Services & ADA Compliance

In accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the University offers reasonable accommodations to students with eligible documented learning, physical and/or psychological disabilities. Under Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and the Americans with Disabilities Amendment Act of 2008, a disability is defined as a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities as compared to an average person in the population. It is the responsibility of the student to contact Disability Support Services to initiate the process to develop an accommodation plan. This accommodation plan will not be applied retroactively. Appropriate, reasonable accommodations will be made to allow each student to meet course requirements, but no fundamental or substantial alteration of academic standards will be made. Students needing assistance should contact Disability Support Services.

Contact email: dss@una.edu


Presidential Mentors Academy

Presidential Mentor's Academy

Presidential Mentors Academy was established in 1997 under the leadership of Dr. Ernestine Davis in conjunction with the University President’s Office to develop a scholarship, mentoring and leadership development program for underrepresented minority high school graduates who demonstrate excellence in academic and community leadership. The mission of the academy is to select and mentor students who demonstrate leadership potential, academic excellence and dedication to community service.

The objective is to help students become effective and efficient leaders both on campus and in the community by providing educational opportunities and events that allow interaction with different cultures, experience in different occupational settings and other interactive experiences. They also serve as ambassadors and recruiters for the University and hosts for University events,  participate in workshops and community service events, and serve as peer mentors within the academy.

Contact email: lmdavidson@una.edu