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Bridging the Gap: Attracting and Retaining Students of Color and Re-Engaging Alumni of Color

Webinar Series Overview

Even as both independent boarding and day schools become more intentional in their efforts to foster diverse, equitable and inclusive environments, many of them still struggle with attracting and retaining students of color or re-engaging alumni of color. Siloed, and sometimes misinformed, approaches to outreach, support, and advocacy are often at the root of these struggles. One approach to building stronger institutional relationships with students of color and re-engaging alumni of color, is through the alignment of the work of admissions/enrollment management, diversity, equity, and inclusion, and institutional advancement.

This webinar series will explore the significance of creating authentic institutional relationships with students and alumni of color and the value of using this intentionally integrated model as the foundation for a universal approach to relationships with any and all school stakeholders.

Webinar Session – Part I

Summary: Part I of this webinar series will address why the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion is a necessary component to building and sustaining deeply-rooted relationships with students and alumni of color. This session will also highlight diversity, equity, and inclusion as critical to the foundation of the work of admissions/enrollment management and institutional advancement.

Webinar Session – Part II

Summary: While affordability is the most significant factor for families who seek a private school education for their children, families also desire environments that will help prepare their children for living, learning, and working in an increasingly diverse world. Part II of this webinar series will use the lens of diversity, equity, and inclusion to explore the value of integrating the work of the offices of Admissions/Enrollment Management and Institutional Advancement as a means of creating authentic relationships with and support for prospective and current families of color.

Webinar Session – Part III

Summary: Often, the work of Institutional Advancement offices is introduced toward the end of students’ educational careers at their respective institutions. However, a lack of understanding about the complex relationships that students of color, in particular, have with their schools can contribute to the sense that the Office of Institutional Advancement is focused only upon transactional relationships rooted in fundraising rather than in “friendraising” (i.e. building and fostering genuine relationships). In this last webinar session, we will dispel myths around the topic of philanthropy and families of color and emphasize the necessary collaboration of the offices of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Admissions/Enrollment Management, and Institutional Advancement in the attraction and retention of students of color and the re-engagement of alumni of color.

If you have a scheduling conflict and can't make one of the live classes, register for the course and AISAP makes the recordings of the classes available afterward.


Presenter: Anika Walker-Johnson, Director of Equity and Inclusion, Germantown Academy

Anika Walker-Johnson was appointed as Germantown Academy’s Director of Equity and Inclusion in July 2018. Prior to GA, she spent 17 years as an educator and administrator at Tabor Academy, a co-educational, day and boarding high school in Marion, MA. For 10 years of her career at Tabor, Anika served as the Dean of Multicultural Education & Community Life. During that time, she co-authored Tabor's Statement of Diversity and Inclusion, served as a faculty and student mentor, co-led a recruitment strategy geared toward hiring new faculty of color, promoted cross-cultural competency for students, faculty and administrators, and planned campus multicultural education events. In her role as a senior administrator, she also served on several administrative committees, including the Professional Development and Hiring Committee, Dean's Office Committee, and as a co-chair of the Diversity Leadership Council. During her last three years at Tabor, Anika also served as an Associate Director of Admission – Multicultural Recruitment where she assisted the admission team with developing and implementing a strategy for strengthening the school's commitment to a diverse community.

Presenter: Lauren Lewis, Senior Associate Director of Enrollment and Director of Diversity and Inclusion, Foxcroft School

No stranger to boarding schools, Lauren Lewis is the Senior Associate Director of Enrollment and Director of Diversity and Inclusion at Foxcroft School in Middleburg, VA. In her 12th year in enrollment, she has served 9 years specifically in boarding schools. She has also served as the Senior Director of Enrollment Management at Saint James School in Hagerstown, MD, Director of Admission and Financial Aid at the Tatnall School in Wilmington, DE, and Associate Director of Admission and Student of Color Recruitment at Tabor Academy in Marion, MA. Lauren holds a BS in Sociology from Towson University and a Master of Social Work from Barry University. Lauren values getting to know people as individuals, and she has worked diligently to build authentic relationships with students, their parents, and their advocates. Because of her ample experience in independent schools and social work background, she has also served in a variety of roles additional to her primary work in enrollment including house parent, student advisor, choreographer, and coach.

Level of Experience:
  • Entering (0-2 Yrs)
  • Emerging (3-4 Yrs)
  • Advancing (5-9 Yrs)
  • Mastering (10+ Yrs)
Professional Competencies:
  • Communicates Effectively
  • Obtain High Standard of Integrity
Professional Behaviors:
  • Develop Leadership
Continuing Education Credits:

Notes for AISAP Members:
  • Once you click the REGISTER button on the right side you are signed up for the webinar.
  • A confirmation email from AISAP Programs will be sent once you register.
  • Once registered, you will have the option to JOIN LIVE WEB EVENT.
  • To add more webinars, click on the Courses tab at the top of the page.

Registration Fee (purchase each webinar separately):
$ 0  AISAP Members
$79  Non-Members 

Click here to learn more about becoming a member.