Administrators’ perspectives of diversity: An examination of the University of Florida
Academic Leadership - Online Journal,
Vol. 3 No. 3 (2002): Vol-3-Issue-3-March-2002
Diversity has become a buzzword and some even say it is a smoke screen hiding the real issues of
minorities because a common understanding about the term’s meaning is lacking (Allen, 1995; Levine,
1991; Myers, 1997). In a study about diversity on campuses, Levine discovered that although most
college administrators believed diversity to be important, few were able to define the term or express
what their diversity programs were meant to achieve. Since the term is so commonly used, it has
become indiscriminate (Adelma, 1997).
Higher education’s first steps are defining what is meant by diversity and setting goals for its
achievement. If these tasks are not done, confusion and non-commitment will follow. And the term will
be read more cynically leading to less effective policy (Adelma, 1997).