Diversity, Equity
and Inclusion

Diversity at Grady College

From the Office of Dean Charles Davis: Commitment to Diversity and Inclusion

Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication, one of the nation’s leading schools of its kind, views faculty, staff, and student diversity and inclusion to be core values of our work and learning environments. Diversity creates opportunities for intellectual stimulation, tough conversations, learning, growth and innovation that subsequently enable our students to become effective leaders and well-rounded citizens. The College counts among its alumni Charlayne Hunter-Gault (ABJ ’63), the first black woman to attend the University of Georgia.  We know our history and we know that at Grady College, diversity, intersectionality and inclusion make us stronger.

Being a state institution we aim to serve the population of all corners of our state. As Georgia and our nation become more diverse, we must reflect the communities, stakeholders and audiences we serve and the students we teach. We recognize that diversity empowers excellence in our core missions of teaching, research and service and that it is supported by actively ensuring underrepresented voices are heard and varied experiences valued.

While our commitment to diversity is evident in the many programs and initiatives we have developed, there is still more work to do to make it an ingrained, everyday part of our culture. We look forward to your partnership to create opportunities and to build an inclusive culture for our College and, as a result, for our professions and industries.

The Grady College Diversity Committee, made up of faculty, staff and students, guides the college in its diversity initiatives through programming and long-term planning. A diversity director helps implement the diversity committee’s initiatives while focusing on recruiting a diverse student body.

Grady College maintains a comprehensive, college-wide diversity plan that outlines specific plans to meet the following goals:

• increasing the number of multicultural students, faculty and staff;

• extending outreach to high school students and their parents;

• expand partnerships that increase diversity-related research and program initiatives with businesses, communities and organizations;

• integrate diversity and inclusion into established systems of accountability.Grady College also hosts a variety of student clubs focusing on diverse students including the UGA chapter of the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ), UGA chapter of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists (NAHJ) and Infusion Magazine.

Diversity Plan at Grady College

In accordance with UGA’s Institutional Diversity Plan (2011-2016):

Diversity includes, but is not limited to, groups defined by race, nationality, ethnicity, age, gender, sexual orientation, language, religion, disability and/or health status, gender identity/expression, veteran status, geographic origins and socioeconomic status. (p. 5)

The College’s Diversity Plan The College’s Diversity plan was created in 2000 is regularly updated and approved by full faculty.

This plan builds upon previous Grady College efforts. Our goals and plan are written to align with the College’s Strategic Plan, the Strategic Plan of the University of Georgia and in concert with the mission and goals of UGA’s Office of Institutional Diversity.

The goal of the diversity plan is to create a culture of diversity where all people are valued. To that end, it is important to acknowledge that the model for U.S. education, businesses and the media professions is and has historically been structured using a Eurocentric, heterosexual, masculine and Christian model. While there is nothing inherently wrong with this fact, this culture is institutionalized in practices and norms that reflect its designers and remains the dominant cultural force in higher education. Students, faculty and staff raised within the dominant culture have the inherent advantage of operating in a system that was built for and with them in mind. Because it is the goal of Grady College to create an environment where all members of our community can succeed, the purpose of this diversity plan is to acknowledge differences exist because of this historical and—still today—contemporary truth. It is also meant to serve as an action plan to grow and champion an inclusive environment where people of all cultures, particularly those of historically excluded, non-dominant backgrounds, are given the opportunity and cultural support to succeed.

AdPR Academy

We believe it is imperative that the advertising and public relations industries strategically address the gap in diversity among its staff and strive for a more inclusive, equitable and welcoming environment representative of all the voices, ideas and perspectives of our global society. AdPR Academy is a solution to aid in diversity, equity and inclusion efforts.

Giving Voice to the Voiceless

Charlayne Hunter-Gault and Ron Gault have generously created a new endowment at the University of Georgia to inspire and support students in projects that give voice to the voiceless, the charting light of the life and work of Charlayne Hunter-Gault.

This fund will provide grants to students from all disciplines across the university. It is fueled by the spirit of Charlayne’s career as a journalist and her journeys to the horizon that intellectually and geographically give voice, in Charlayne’s own words, “to people whose voices are needed—to help them realize their dreams for themselves and their communities, to help contribute to human understanding and to enlarge our capacity for empathy.”

Additional Resources at UGA

There are several additional UGA resources available for our diverse student population including:

Additional Organizations

  • The 3% Conference

  • Broadcast Education Association

  • National Association of Hispanic Journalists

  • American Advertising Federation

  • Geena Davis Institute

  • Native American Journalists Association

  • News Leaders Association

  • Journalism & Women’s Symposium

  • The Poynter Institute

  • Asian American Journalists Association

  • The LAGRANT Foundation

  • Public Relations Society of America

  • The Association of LBGTQ Journalists (NLGJA Stylebook)

  • National Association of Black Journalists

  • Society of Professional Journalists

The Latest

Read the newest headlines, get updates and discover events happening at Grady.

Woman standing on mountain range, and woman presenting research poster at a conference.

Giving Voice to the Voiceless celebrates past grants; seeks future projects to support

When Charlayne Hunter-Gault (ABJ ’63) and Ron Gault created the Giving Voice to the Voiceless fund in 2017, they sought to impact not only local communities but also projects with […]

A Research Radio slider graphic with a headshot of Booker T. Mattison and text that reads "Inside Booker T. Mattison's filmmaking and teaching processes."

Inside Booker T. Mattison’s filmmaking and teaching processes

Listen to the full episode on Spotify or Apple Podcasts. Booker T. Mattison, an associate professor in the Department of Entertainment and Media Studies at Grady College, teaches screenwriting and directing for the […]

Burney headshot

Profiles of Tenacity: Charles Burney

Charles Burney recently graduated from Grady College with a Bachelor’s in journalism and is currently pursuing a Master’s in the same field. He’s driven to excel with a determination to […]

Headshot of fourth-year public relations student Valeria Valdes.

Profiles of Tenacity: Valeria Valdes

Fourth-year student Valeria Valdes was recently accepted into the American Advertising Federation’s Most Promising Multicultural Students class of 2024. Learn more about her below. Why did you choose your major? […]

Fardosa Hassan in her graduation gown, sits at the UGA Arch.

Alumna Fardosa Hassan named Pickering Foreign Affairs Fellow

Fardosa Hassan, a 2023 graduate from the Department of Entertainment and Media Studies at Grady College and financial planning from the College of Family and Consumer Sciences, was selected for […]

Profiles of Tenacity: Jimena Somilleda

Fourth-year public relations major Jimena Somilleda is motivated to be an advocate for her community. In addition to UGA’s AdPR department, she is involved with the Association of Latino Professionals […]

A profiles of tenacity graphic featuring a headshot of Karenia Murry.

Profiles of Tenacity: Karenia Murry

Fourth-year journalism student Karenia Murry currently serves as the vice president for the National Association of Black Journalists at UGA. She enjoys the community she’s found through organizations and classes […]

Headshot of NaYoung Song and caption headline reading Nayoung Song takes on Crisis Communication at UGA

NaYoung Song takes on Crisis Communication

After completing her bachelor’s degree at Korea University, NaYoung Song decided to attend the University of Georgia to receive her master’s, becoming the inaugural scholar in a partnership between the […]

Profiles of Tenacity: Dani García Pozo

Dani García Pozo’s love of writing motivates them to craft memorable stories and projects during their time at Grady College. Read more about their creative pursuits below. Why did you […]

AdPR Academy continues to grow in 7th year

In late October, a diverse group of 30 students from colleges and universities across the Southeast gathered in Atlanta for just under a week of training to advance their skills […]

Summer academies introduce high school students to media careers, college life

Living in the dorm, eating in the dining hall and collaborating with other students to complete class projects are some of the activities that attendees of Grady College Summer Media […]

Destiny Hartwell receives 2023 ESPN Scholarship via AWM Foundation

Destiny Hartwell, a journalism major and Carmical Sports Media Institute student from Statesboro, Georgia, recently received the 2023 ESPN Scholarship from the Alliance for Women in Media.  The scholarship is […]

Covering social justice, with Dr. Denetra Walker

 Listen to Grady Research Radio Apple Podcasts/Spotify/Stitcher    Dr. Denetra Walker, an assistant professor in the Journalism Department, started her role in fall 2022. While she’s still new to the […]

Apply now for Giving Voice to the Voiceless Grant

University of Georgia students who seek funding for projects that amplify marginalized communities are invited to apply for a Giving Voice to the Voiceless Grant now through April 14, 2023. […]

Denetra Walker brings social justice journalism research to Grady College

A semester after teaching her first class at Grady College, Denetra Walker is energized by the responsibility and anticipating the opportunities that lie ahead. Walker has a passion for teaching […]


Philadelphia Skyline

Philadelphia Alumni Event

Save the date to join Dean Davis and other alumni for our Grady College networking event in Philadelphia during the AEJMC Conference. Reserve your spot here by August 1.

UGA 40 Under 40 celebration

The UGA 40 under 40 alumni luncheon will happen on Friday, September 6, in Athens.

Fall Alumni Board Meeting

Save the date for the fall 2024 Alumni Board meeting. More details will be announced closer to the date.

Dean Davis poses for a photo with two others at the 2023 alumni tailgate in the PAF.

Grady alumni tailgate

Please join us on the Schnitzer Family Media Lawn 2 1/2 hours before kickoff against Mississippi State University for an alumni tailgate.

Summer Media Academies

Our Summer Media Academies are an intensive, residential one-week program open to rising high school sophomores to seniors interested in the mass communication field. Students take classes at Grady College in tracks including Journalism, Advertising & Public Relations or Entertainment. Click below for details about this summer program.

Headshot of Jimena Somilleda


Growing up as a first-generation Mexican-American, I always valued the sacrifices my parents made to get my younger brother and me at UGA. From a young age, they’ve instilled a passion for breaking generational cycles and being a voice for my community.

Jimena Somilleda

AdPR Student


“AdPR Academy was such a fun and insightful experience. It was a pleasure being in a room filled with diverse students from different universities. Being able to incorporate my ideas in the rebranding of an organization gave me a glimpse of what the public relations industry will be like. I am overly thankful to Grady College for allowing me to be a part of such an amazing program.”

Joyce Bell

University of Georgia, 2023 AdPR Academy cohort


“Through AdPR Academy, I got to build crazy skills within advertising since it is a lot workshops and networking with people from Warner Brothers, Google, a bunch of ad agencies and they exposed you to completely new things. I had a job offer after sitting down during the networking hour and that is something I wouldn’t have gotten if I didn’t go.”

Jonina Bullock

advertising student


“This is one of the biggest honors I’ve received thus far because it represents everything I have been striving for: increasing diversity, equity and inclusion in the media industry.” —

Alise Crittendon

(AB ’22), 2022 MAIP Fellow, creative copywriter, Edelman


“I have gained a knowledge of what DEI and cultural relevancy are and how a brand like Delta applies it to every team they have. Outside the DEI space, I have learned a lot about the brand campaign process and am familiar with the client/agency relationship and ecosystem.”

Deborah Yoon

advertising student


“I didn’t have a lot of people who were like me in the classroom, so now I am able to be an example for students in the classroom to see that there is excellence at every level from a person who is a first gen student.”

Denetra Walker

assistant professor, journalism


“Having a progressive disability and being categorized as a minority has shaped me to be an outsider of the world. Never fitting in and not having a seat at the dinner party has motivated me to constantly push others to be more inclusive whether it’s at the workplace or in my personal life.”

Marcella Genut

(AB 18), recipient of 2023 Diversity and Inclusion Advocacy Award


“I don’t really have a professional hero, but I love seeing Black women paving the way for us, such as Issa Rae, Oprah Winfrey, Shonda Rhimes and Rihanna.”

Kacie Geter

Journalism Student