by MaryAlice Bitts-Jackson
During a singular moment in social-justice history, Dickinson welcomes a noted and familiar expert to campus to help lead the way forward.
Amer Ahmed is a nationally recognized leader in institutional diversity, equity and inclusion efforts, a frequent keynote speaker and the founder of AFA Diversity Consulting LLC, who has contributed to national conversations on race, equity and inclusion through national news outlets and documentary films. He joins the college community this month as interim executive director of equity & inclusivity and visiting lecturer in intercultural studies.
“I am extremely excited that Dr. Amer Ahmed, a prominent voice on issues of equity and inclusion in American higher education, has decided to join the Dickinson College community,” says George Stroud, vice president of student life and dean of students, who, beginning July 1, oversees the Office of Equity & Inclusivity. “I am confident that he will help lead the college’s efforts of becoming a more inclusive environment.”
Ahmed comes to Dickinson with deep insights into diversity, equity, inclusion and global education, and with tailored experience geared toward Dickinson’s specific needs and goals. In addition to working at Swarthmore, the University of Massachusetts–Amherst and the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, he consulted with Dickinson in 2018 as part of a summer inclusivity study group with faculty and staff.
Informed by deep theoretical knowledge of the field, he uses a variety of methods, current-events discourse, connections with art and music, and storytelling, to facilitate awareness, communication and understanding. Soon after beginning his new post at Dickinson, Ahmed launched The Eclectic Inclusion Podcast on Spotify, with an aim of inspiring young people and amplifying diverse and unique voices who have made meaningful contributions.
Along with Todd Nordgren, Dickinson’s new director of the Office of LGBTQ Services, Ahmed is one of two new directors of inclusivity initiatives to join the Dickinson community this summer as part of the college’s continuing work to institutionalize inclusivity.
Ahmed is supportive of the college’s work so far and eager to roll up his sleeves to help Dickinson meet the challenges and tap the possibilities of the current era.
“I don't know if there's ever been a more important time to be a resource of support for students. Everyone touched by higher education in this country is facing an unprecedented challenge,” Ahmed says.
“I am excited to join Dickinson because I believe it is an institution that is poised to be an innovative leader in building an institutional commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion with a global lens,” he adds. “There's a lot to learn, but I'm thankful to have such great colleagues to support me in my transition.”
Published July 9, 2020