Next Generation Leaders established at Creighton
Members of the Class of 2026 take part in the Creighton Pathway during Welcome Week in August 2022.
Creighton took a major step toward living out its equity, diversity and inclusion goals this fall with the establishment of the Next Generation Leaders program.
“We wanted to recruit students who are passionate about leading diversity and inclusion efforts, who have the desire to impact the next generation of students,” says Sarah Walker, PhD, vice president of the Division of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion.
The program is dedicated to identifying and empowering students from underrepresented racial and ethnic backgrounds and offers leadership opportunities in addition to a full, four-year scholarship. A minimum 3.8 high school GPA on a 4.0 scale is required, and students can pursue any major at the University.
The freshmen enrolled in the inaugural cohort represent 13 states – stretching from New York to Hawaii – and were selected based upon a written application, essay, video submission, interview and more. Out of the 107 students selected for an interview, 32 were chosen.
The racial/ethnic makeup of the first cohort is Black, Hispanic, Native American and Native Hawaiian, but there’s a lot more to the program than simple representation. The goal is to help students develop into leaders who are dedicated to equity, diversity and inclusion.
During their time at Creighton, the Next Generation Leaders will receive leadership development and coaching, make purposeful connections within Creighton and throughout the Omaha area, and participate in group service projects.
“We celebrate these students and the opportunity they have to be the next generation of culturally diverse leaders who will bring awareness and help us to carry out our mission,” says Mary Chase, EdD, vice provost for Enrollment Management.
“I am delighted the University and our donors have stepped up to create a scholarship and programming that enable students to live and create a more diverse and inclusive community.
“The Next Generation Leaders clearly benefit from the full tuition scholarship, but they get more than just funding. They are asked to lead and are provided mentoring and an opportunity to help our community appreciate our diversity.”
Ultimately, Walker and Chase say, the students will bring awareness and help Creighton fulfill its mission in action.