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A View from the Founders: Diverse at 35

Watson Headshot

During the initial preparation for the inaugural edition of Black Issues In Higher Education, co-founders Dr. Bill Cox and Frank L. Matthews spoke with a large number of professionals throughout the country. They also spent many days, weeks and months surveying the higher education community to determine the need for a professional publication of this nature.

“After researching, analyzing and listening to the pros from all sectors of higher education, it became obvious that a publication with this focus was long overdue,” they wrote, chronicling the magazine’s history. “The results of our analysis also revealed a high level of interest in the diversity of information we planned to report on and carry in the magazine.”

For Cox and Matthews, the objectives were always clear. The magazine would share a full range of events, trends and occurrences that spoke to and about Black participation in the field of higher education. Recruitment strategies, successful retention programs, curriculum, faculty development and the critical analysis of governmental policies were also core, relevant subjects addressed in each issue.

Black Issues In Higher Education was launched in March 1984. In 2005, the publication was renamed Diverse: Issues In Higher Education. Published biweekly, we remain the only national newsweekly today focusing on matters of access and opportunity for all in higher education.

Dr. Jamal Eric Watson, who served as executive editor for Diverse, recently interviewed Cox and Matthews about the publication’s storied history and the impact that it has had on the higher education landscape. The interview has been edited.

Dr. William E. Cox, President/CEO & Co-Founder

JW: What is your sense of where we are with regard to the publication? Are you pleased when you look back over these 35 years?

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