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Diversity at Curry

The Curry School of Education values diversity in all of its complexity and richness. We engage our students with multiple perspectives to prepare them to be active agents of change in a complex global society. We intentionally seek opportunities to expand diversity at our school through recruitment, retention, teaching, research, and service. Our goal is the development of a community that promotes and values diversity and equity, engaging all individuals in our mission to “Discover. Create. Change.” 

Though many strides have been made in diversity at the Curry School, there is much more work to be done. Our quest is to create and sustain a learning community that purposefully and strategically acknowledges and values diversity and is committed to preparing educators and other professionals who will, through teaching, research, and service, contribute to a body of knowledge that will result in improved outcomes for all learners.

To accomplish this goal the Curry administration, faculty, students, and staff will work to:

  * Create a safe space where faculty, students, and staff can engage in courageous conversations about cultural issues that are often not addressed openly in organizations and institutions
  * Increase diversity among faculty and students
  * Work with faculty to transform the curriculum so that every student will be exposed to critical aspects of diversity and equity at the national and international levels in their courses, programs, and research apprenticeships
  * Encourage and support collaborative research that addresses the needs of culturally and linguistically diverse students/clients
  * Develop pipeline programs designed to attract students from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds into education and related fields at the undergraduate and graduate levels
  * Recognize and honor faculty, students, and staff who demonstrate a commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusivity in their teaching, research, and/or service
  *Maintain a calendar of special events and activities related to diversity and equity in education

Diversity Resources at the Curry School


SEEDS4Change or Students in Education Engaged in Diversity Scholarship for Change, is a student-led organization committed to bridging gaps between cultural and community differences within The Curry School and surrounding Charlottesville communities.
SEEDS4Change Blog

Curry Diversity Action Committee (DAC)

The DAC is a standing committee of the Curry School’s faculty council. The DAC replaced the DDAT and Curry Diversity Committee in the fall of 2014 in order to provide a strong mechanism to advance the Curry commitment to diversity and equity. For more information press the link in the left navigation bar on this page.


The Legacy of Diversity in the Curry SchoolRidley, 1988

Walter N. Ridley

In 1953, Lindley Styles, the Dean of the Curry School of Education, conferred upon Walter N. Ridley the Doctor of Education degree. This was an occasion of historical magnitude because Ridley was the first African American student to earn a degree from the University of Virginia and the nation’s first African American to receive a doctoral degree from a traditionally white Southern university.

Each year, we honor Dr. Ridley with the Walter N. Ridley Distinguished Speaker Series.

The Curry Desegregation Center

Hank Allen and Jim BashIn 1964, the U.S. Federal Government authorized the funding of 27 national educational centers to address the desegregation of public schools. The mission of these sites, known as Consultative Resource Centers, was to support school districts by training teachers and administrators making this challenging transition.

Johnson & Bash, 1967In 1967, The Curry School received one of those grants written by Professor James Bash. The Curry Desegregation Center (CDC), as it was commonly called, operated with a small staff that serviced school systems in Virginia, Maryland, West Virginia and Washington, DC. Bash hired Nathan Johnson, the University’s first African American faculty member, as associate director. Howard “Hank” Allen became executive director in 1973 and led center programs until it closed in 1981.  Learn more.

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