Nkenge Friday, senior assistant vice chancellor for strategic initiatives with the Office of Diversity and Inclusion, was one of 77 higher education leaders who participated in the July 2023 HERS Leadership Institute, held at the University of Denver in Colorado.
HERS – Higher Education Resources Services – hosts three cohorts per year for a rigorous institute designed to produce dynamic leaders capable of ushering their institutions into a more inclusive and equitable future. The institute focuses on women and people who are gender diverse, but its programs and services are open to all regardless of gender identity.
Designed for mid- to senior-level faculty and staff, the HERS Institute offers a challenging but noncompetitive space where participants develop the skills to bring their professional vision into reality.
“Dr. Friday has proven to be a dynamic leader for our university community,” said Marco Barker, vice chancellor for diversity and inclusion. “She has been instrumental in supporting university colleges and units and in building partnerships. Her selection for and participation in this nationally-recognized program demonstrate her accomplishments, inclusive leadership and impact.”
Friday was the only participant from Nebraska and one of four representatives from Big Ten universities.
“Through the HERS Leadership Institute, I was able to collaborate with my colleagues from across the United States and expand my understanding of the unique challenges and opportunities faced in the evolving landscape of higher education” Friday said.
Friday accepted a position with the Office of Diversity and Inclusion in August 2019 after a nationwide search. She was promoted to her current position in July 2022. She is a diversity and inclusion strategist with a background leading organization-wide diversity and inclusion operations. She holds a Doctor of Education degree from Nova Southeastern University, a Master’s of Education from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, a Master of Arts from the University of Oklahoma, and a Bachelor’s from Tougaloo College. She is active in numerous professional associations and community organizations and is a certified qualified administrator for Intercultural Development Inventory.