DENTON (UNT), Texas --The University of North Texas has selected Kevin Carreathers to be the university's new director of diversity planning. Carreathers will join UNT's Division of Institutional Equity and Diversity in June.
Carreathers is currently the assistant to the provost and director of diversity at Salisbury University in Maryland. Previously, he served as the associate dean of students at the University of Memphis and was director of multicultural services at Texas A&M University.
Carreathers holds a bachelor's degree in psychology from UNT and a master's degree in guidance and counseling from Prairie View A&M University. He has taken courses toward his doctorate at the University of North Texas, Texas A&M University and the University of Memphis.
Carreathers said his experiences as a UNT undergraduate -- including participation in student government, serving as a student worker in the office of intercultural student services and membership in both the Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity and in NT40, an organization that helps recruit new students and assists with special events on campus -- led him to apply for this job.
"I have always wanted to give back to UNT, because it was very good to me as an undergraduate, and the position was well suited to my skills and knowledge," he said.
Gilda Garcia, vice president for Institutional Equity and Diversity at UNT, said Carreathers is an important addition to her office.
"Kevin will play a key role as UNT asserts itself as a national leader in diversity and inclusion initiatives. He will help us develop plans that leverage the value of diversity in the creation of an inclusive learning environment that supports all members of the campus -- students, faculty and staff -- to be successful," she said.
Carreathers said that diversity is "an opportunity to share values, differences and cultures in an atmosphere of respect, by celebrating those differences."
While Carreathers was director of multicultural services at Texas A&M, the institution maintained the highest freshman retention rate for minority students in Texas for 10 consecutive years and was recognized by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board for creating a positive campus climate amongst public universities and colleges.
Carreathers is a founder of the Southwestern Black Student Leadership Conference, the largest student-run conference in the nation, co-founder of the Diversity Education Institute and founder of the Multicultural Affairs Institute. He served as a strategist to assist Texas A&M University and other Texas state universities to find alternative solutions to maintain minority recruitment and retention programs during the Hopwood decision.
Carreathers' areas of expertise include diversity issues, program development, student retention and mentoring. He has been a consultant on diversity issues for a variety of places including The College of William and Mary, the University of North Carolina, Baylor University, the Central Intelligence Agency, Bryan ISD and Stephenville ISD. He is an invited presenter annually at The National Conference on Race and Ethnicity in American Higher Education.
Carreathers said embracing and celebrating diversity is extremely important to any institution in the 21st century.
"It plays a major role, because it directly relates to their success in retaining a diverse student, faculty and staff community," he said.