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Academic Diversity

A Culture of Inclusive Excellence

Academic Affairs is committed to fostering a culture of inclusive excellence at Virginia Wesleyan University.  We provide an academic experience that aids the institution in achieving our mission of inspiring “students to build meaningful lives through engagement in Coastal Virginia’s dynamic metropolitan region, the nation, and the world.”  Virginia Wesleyan University envisions an open and safe campus climate for all who learn, live, and work in our campus community.

We value faculty diversity in its myriad forms and strive for an equitable and inclusive campus climate where all faculty feel empowered to do their best work and fully engage in the life of the university.

Diversity in the Curriculum

To aid VWU students prepare for meaningful lives, Virginia Wesleyan University brings an interdisciplinary approach to diversity.  As part of their liberal arts experience at VWU, students will have the opportunity to take courses that are explicitly focused on underrepresented voices and perspectives, to take courses that teach about cultures and cultural diversity throughout the world, and also to consider questions of diversity across the curriculum.  At VWU, students may take classes on such topics as:

  • North African Authors
  • The Literature of Slavery
  • France and the French Today
  • African American History
  • LGBTQ Literature
  • Mediating Religious Conflicts
  • Images of Women in Theatre and Film
  • Topics in Mexican Culture and History
  • Cross Cultural Psychology
  • Health and the Hispanic Community
  • U.S. Women’s History
  • Complex Global Challenges
  • Buddhist Philosophy
  • Globalization & Its Discontent
  • Homeless in America
  • Equity, Diversity, & Inclusion in Sports
  • Travel’s Impact on Culture and the Environment
  • International Human Rights
  • Queer Cultural Studies
  • Women Writers
  • Beyond the Border: Stories of Immigration
  • Extreme Religion and Religious Freedom
  • Diversity & Society
  • Diversity in American Literature
  • Music and Art Around the World
  • Women in Culture and Society
  • African-American Religious Experience
  • Theatre of Diversity
  • The American Protest Tradition
  • Aging in the Media
  • Africa in Transition
  • Race, Gender, and Leisure
  • Art of Africa, Asia, and the Americas
  • Feminist and Gender Theory
  • African American Literature
  • German Women Filmmakers
  • U.S. Latino Culture
  • History of South Africa
  • Women on the Brink
  • Music and Folk Culture of the Southern Appalachians
  • Judaism through Food
  • Ethnicity and Politics: Latinos in America
  • Immigration and citizenship
  • Disability in the Media

Africana Studies

In 2019, Virginia Wesleyan University began the process to establish an Africana Studies program at the institution.  The program will be an interdisciplinary academic program that engages students in critical analyses of current and historical sociological, economic, political, psychological, and cultural issues concerning the African American experience, Africa, and the African Disapora – the global dispersion of peoples of African descent.  Students enrolled in the program will be introduced to a wide range of historical and contemporary perspectives through an interdisciplinary approach to the coursework and research.  The program offers students the opportunity to develop an individualized program of studying black people’s religions, sociologies, cultures, cultural expressions, and history throughout the world. 

For more information, please reach out to Dr. Antje Schwennicke, Dean of the Birdsong School of Social Science.