Diversity at Western Carolina University, is all-inclusive and recognizes everyone and every group as part of the diversity that should be valued. It includes race, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, age, national origin, geography, religion, disability, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, education, marital status, language and linguistic differences, and physical appearance. It also involves different ideas, perspectives, and values.
WCU's Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity Programs is led by Chief Diversity Officer Ricardo Nazario-Colon, who serves as the campus's primary facilitator for cross-divisional diversity initiatives. Nazario-Colon's appointment in June of 2016 fulfills initiatives in the university’s “2020 Vision” strategic plan calling for increasing the diversity of the student body and improving the diversity among faculty and staff. Nazario-Colon previously served as director of the Office of Diversity Programs at Western Kentucky University and as director of student activities, inclusion and leadership at Morehead State University.
During Black History Month 2017, WCU's Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity Programs collected stories through an online forum about the unique experiences of students of color on the WCU campus.Watch and Read the Stories