NSHE Celebrates Black History Month

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

Today, as NSHE joins in celebrating Black History Month, it is a great time to renew our commitment toward assisting our African American students, faculty, and staff in reaching their educational and professional goals. We know we have work to do to increase access and to close opportunity gaps.

While African Americans are approximately 10%[1] of Nevada’s population, they represented about 5%[2] of the NSHE students who earned a degree during the 2019-20 academic year.

As a system, we are determined to support this student population through culturally-specific programming. Programs such as Truckee Meadows Community College’s Men of Color program, Nevada State College’s Sankofa program and Western Nevada College’s Continuing the Legacy of African American Student Success (or C.L.A.A.S.S.) program are steps in the right direction.

I want to thank the Board of Regents for their strategic goal to Close the Achievement Gap, aimed at eliminating equity gaps in enrollment, retention, and graduation rates for Nevada’s African American students and other traditionally underserved student populations.

Through the Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Access (IDEA) Committee (formerly known as the Cultural Diversity Committee), NSHE is doing the work to ensure equity is not only discussed, but that meaningful policy changes are implemented to bolster the efforts of our dedicated campus leaders.

Here at System Administration, I am incredibly proud to recognize our very own Dr. Constance Brooks, Vice Chancellor of Public Affairs and Advancement, who is being honored this month by Cox Communications as a Nevadan who has made an impact on our state. We are so proud of Dr. Brooks’ achievements, and look forward to many more as she continues to serve our NSHE community.

Dr. Brooks is being honored along with education advocate Hannah Marie Brown, Cox Manager of Field Operations Allen Stephenson, and College of Southern Nevada Chief of Staff and Chief Diversity Officer Lawrence Weekly.

We are grateful for the many African American professionals leading the way across NSHE, including Regents Donald S. McMichael (District 4) and Laura Perkins (District 1) and Presidents DeRionne Pollard (NSC) and Keith Whitfield (UNLV).

I encourage everyone to join and participate in the ongoing events celebrating Black History Month at NSHE’s campuses.




Melody Rose, Ph.D.


Nevada System of Higher Education



[1]2020 U.S. Census

[2] NSHE Student Data warehouse – Completions