Diversity Resources

The University of Northern Iowa's commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion is as important as ever as we navigate through the COVID-19 pandemic. This page includes diversity-related resources for our students, faculty and staff.

Diversity Matters

The Diversity Matters website includes important information from UNI's Chief Diversity Officer, including messages from the CDO, resources, Northern Iowa Student Government diversity initiatives and more. A few highlights from the Diversity Matters site:

  • Students may seek assistance through the UNI Counseling Center. Shantila Caston is the mental health therapist for Diversity Outreach and can be reached at 319-273-2676.

  • The Center for Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice (DIS) is staffed by individuals steeped in knowledge around racial trauma and they are happy to talk with anyone affected by recent events. For more information, contact the director, Jamie Chidozie, at 319-273-2250.

  • The Dean of Students can help with advising and referral. She can be reached at 319-273-7153.

  • Employees who are interested in talking to someone should reach out to the Employee Assistance Program at 800-327-4692.

Opportunities to engage with one another are also available:

  • Racial Healing Circles (see Diversity Matters for more information) 

  • Mindful Monday Walks (visit the Counseling Center’s page) 

  • Sista Circle support group for female students of color (contact Shantila Caston, mental health therapist, at 319-273-2676) 

  • Maker Space in the CME (contact Keyah Levy, associate director, 319-273-2250) 

  • The Meditation Room in Maucker Union

  • Makerspace in the Rod Library 

Panther Promise Academy is a new program for first-year and transfer students of color with a goal of providing ongoing engagement and support for students of diverse backgrounds in a predominantly white institution (PWI). For more information, contact De'Carlos Anderson at 319-273-4249.

UNI THRIVE is a new peer-mentorship program for multicultural students. For more information, contact Dacia Carter at 319-273-7347.

Diversity Matters Website


Diversity, Inclusion & Social Justice

The offices under Diversity, Inclusion & Social Justice are currently open, however, they are all on limited capacity due to COVID-19. Please make sure to check your email regularly and/or visit forwardtogether.uni.edu for campus updates. Follow our social media platforms for center updates and programs.

  • If you are in need of assistance regarding the Center for Multicultural Education or Gender & Sexuality Services, please contact Keyah Levy, associate director for DIS, by email at keyah.levy@uni.edu or by phone at 319-273-2250.

  • For assistance with Military & Veteran Student Services, contact associate director for DIS Chiquita Loveless by email at chiquita.loveless@uni.edu or by phone at 319-273-3040.

  • For assistance with Mentoring & Retention Initiatives, contact coordinator Dacia Carter by email at dacia.carter@uni.edu or by phone at 319-273-7347.

Student Emergency Funds—Iowa State University, the University of Iowa and the University of Northern Iowa launched funds to help students address their most urgent needs. At UNI, for more information on the emergency funds, please contact: Sarah Parsons, director of advancement communications for the UNI Foundation, 319-273-2505 or sarah.parsons@uni.edu.

For emergencies or other assistance:

  • Department of Public Safety at 319-273-2712

  • Maucker Union at studentlife.uni.edu

  • Student Accessibility Services at sas.uni.edu

  • UNI Counseling Center at 319-273-2676

Center for Multicultural Education Website

Military & Veteran Student Services Website

Gender & Sexuality Services Website


Northern Iowa Student Government Diversity Initiatives

UNI's Northern Iowa Student Government (NISG) has put together a list of resources, contacts and useful information that may be helpful to the university community as we continue to champion diversity as a core value of our institution.

NISG Diversity Initiatives Website


*What should I do if I am the victim of bias or witness bias related to COVID-19?

If you are the victim of bias or witness bias related to COVID-19 or anything else, please visit our Safety at UNI website and click on the “Report an Incident” box. You will be prompted to select an option.

The University of Northern Iowa is committed to promoting an educational, working and living environment that is free from all forms of discrimination. 

Several universities have experienced an increasing number of reports of stereotyping, harassment, and bullying directed at persons perceived to be of Chinese American, and more generally, Asian descent due to misinformation about the virus. The COVID-19 is a public health issue and is not the fault of any person, country or ethnic group. 

Acts of bias, discrimination and harassment—whether via words or actions, publicly or privately expressed—counter the university’s core values, vision, mission and strategic plan. It is essential that we be supportive, respectful, and inclusive of the members of the UNI community who may have friends and families in the countries impacted.