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What We Do

To fulfill its mission, Providence College must continually foster a community in which members from all backgrounds can learn, live, and thrive. The Office of Institutional Diversity, led by the Chief Diversity Officer and supported by the Diversity Implementation Committee (DIC), is tasked with implementing and assessing the goals outlined in the Strategic Plan for Diversity.

We work across campus constituencies to coordinate and facilitate new and existing diversity initiatives and programs. Working collaboratively, across divisions and with members of the local community, we strive to develop a common vision of a diverse campus community where all members are encouraged “to talk and to listen, and to learn from one another.”

Current initiatives focus on these thematic areas:

  • Campus Climate

  • Recruitment and Retention

  • Diversity Education and Training

  • Community Engagement

  • Diverse Interactions

Rafael Angel Zapata
Associate Vice President & Chief Diversity Officer
Phone: (401) 865-2878
Fax: (401) 865-1710

Rev. Brian J. Shanley, O.P., '80, Providence College President: “The whole goal of education is to have your mind and your heart be enlarged.” (1:11)


​Save the Date: Thursday, September 4, 2014, Ruane 105

Dr. Pedro Noguera, Peter L. Agnew Professor of Education, New York University

Segregation Forever? Education and Civil Rights 60 Years After Brown v. Board of Education

Education is frequently described as the civil rights issue of the 21st century. This is particularly true for politicians when they are calling for policy changes and reform. However, the most important civil rights issue involving education in the 20th century--school segregation--remains largely unresolved, and despite the controversy it once generated, it is rarely mentioned as an important social issue that should be addressed.  In this presentation we will analyze the current reform agenda being promoted by states, the federal government and various advocacy groups. We will also explore why issues pertaining to racial segregation and social inequality are no longer considered central to school change initiatives and the implication of allowing these issues to be ignored. Finally, we will consider the possibilities for change that exist in the current period given the constraints confronting public schools.

The Office of Institutional Diversity


Guided by our belief in the essential dignity of every person, the Office of Institutional Diversity (OID) at Providence College strives to create an academic and campus culture that attracts and supports the development of a stellar and diverse community of students, faculty and staff that reflect the diversity of the Catholic Church, and broader world in which we live and work.

A diverse campus community is inextricably linked to academic excellence. It provides a rich intellectual environment, consisting of a broader range of questions, perspectives, and scholarly interests, better preparing all our graduates to live, work and serve others in an increasingly global and multicultural society.


Office of Institutional Diversity Newsletter
The inaugural issue of the OID Newsletter which will be published several times during the year and will provide the PC community with information on the initiatives, goals and objectives that the OID undertakes to advance the College's Strategic Plan for Diversity in support of the College's mission.


A Message to the Providence College Community from Father Shanley
At Providence College, we seek to create an environment characterized by openness, fairness, and equal access for all students, staff, and faculty. A welcoming and inclusive campus climate is grounded in mutual respect, nurtured by dialogue, and characterized by a pattern of civil interaction. Creating and maintaining a community environment that respects individual needs, abilities, and potential is critically important.


Diversity News More

Friar Foundations
25 members of the Class of 2018 spent 5 weeks on campus this summer, earning credits while learning about college life.

Embracing Community
Hispanic community members share Mass, meal, fellowship with PC staff.

A Faith Deepened
Saadia Ahmad ’14, Muslim student on a Catholic campus, introduced Interfaith Dialogue Group.

Miss America visits PC
First Indian-American to wear crown tells students to fight cultural misconceptions.

Catholic and Dominican

What does it mean to be a Catholic and Dominican college? We invite you to explore this question and the distinctive mission of Providence College.
About Providence College's Catholic and Dominican Identity