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University of Phoenix Launches Student and Alumni Leadership Council 

By Michele Mitchum

Council aims to promote excellence, inclusivity and collaboration across the University

University of Phoenix proudly announces the establishment of the Student and Alumni Leadership Council, which held its first meeting on March 21, 2024. The Council, working alongside the Office of Educational Equity (OEE), will play a pivotal role in enhancing co-curricular programs, fostering institutional connectedness, and amplifying the voices of marginalized communities. With a focus on nurturing a culture of empowerment and collaboration, the Council will serve as a driving force in promoting student belonging and facilitating meaningful leadership opportunities for both students and alumni.

“We are thrilled to launch the Student and Alumni Leadership Council at University of Phoenix,” shares Tondra Richardson, MBA, Director of Student Diversity & Inclusion with the Office of Educational Equity. “The Council is a natural extension of our commitment to excellence, inclusivity, and collaboration within the University community. We look forward to working with council members to cultivate connections among students, alumni, and administration, while championing diversity, equity, and inclusion across every facet of university life.”

The Student and Alumni Leadership Council has established the following aims:

·       Advocate for Equity: The Council will champion diversity, equity, and inclusion across all facets of University life

·       Enhance Student Experiences: Council members will collaborate with Student Organizations and the Bravely Belong Student Cafe to enhance the vibrant campus environment

·       Provide Valuable Feedback: Council members will serve as ambassadors, offering insights and recommendations on University policies and procedures

·       Promote Leadership Development: The Council will encourage students to embody the University Learning Goals through developing skills such as leadership, communication, and organization

In addition to the goals above, the Student and Alumni Leadership Council will serve as the voice of the student body for OEE initiatives, reinforcing the importance of institutional connectedness and providing representation for its student stakeholders. The inaugural Student and Alumni Leadership Council is made up of the following 20 individuals:

·       Anthony Cathey

·       B. Scott Lee

·       Cynthia DeFord

·       Donna L. Waldrup

·       Elbereth Stewart

·       Erika Wilburn-Campbell

·       Judeissa Quintana Robert

·       Kathy Pauline Marino

·       Kumiko Yamada-Yuge

·       Laryssia Jones

·       Maria Concepcion Roa

·       Melanie O. Brown

·       Melanie Shavonne Hazelton

·       Melissa Ieans

·       Patricia Branch

·       Rachel Murillo Williams

·       Selena Oliver

·       Shellorne Smith

·       Stephanie Morgan-Harris

·       Whitney Floyd

OEE Program Manager, Jelisa Dallas, M.S. Ed., says she looks forward to the opportunity to create a positive impact alongside the council members. “I am excited to build upon the inclusive and collaborative environment we hold dear at University of Phoenix,” Dallas shares. “The Student and Alumni Leadership Council provides a wonderful opportunity to amplify stakeholder voices, enhance the student experience and promote leadership development. We are grateful for the opportunity to collaborate on our goals and look forward to the work ahead.”

The Student and Alumni Leadership Council is part of a series of initiatives with which the OEE engages aiming to foster cultural awareness, thought leadership and community alliances to promote and sustain educational equity and diversity initiatives. The OEE supports students and faculty year-round with programs like the Educational Equity Webinar series, the Inclusive Leadership Summit and an internal offering for staff and faculty, The Inclusive Café.

About University of Phoenix

University of Phoenix innovates to help working adults enhance their careers and develop skills in a rapidly changing world. Flexible schedules, relevant courses, interactive learning, skills-mapped curriculum for our bachelor’s and master’s degree programs and a Career Services for Life® commitment help students more effectively pursue career and personal aspirations while balancing their busy lives. For more information, visit