As New Jersey slowly returns to normalcy in the aftermath of superstorm Sandy, community leaders, educators, and institutions throughout New Jersey are coming together to explore strategies for moving forward at the American Conference on Diversity’s 12th Annual Statewide Conference on Diversity Issues in Higher Education.

“Who Has the Access C.O.D.E.? Positioning a Generation for Better Careers, Opportunities & Diversity Through Education” will be held November 16 from 9 am to 3 pm at Saint Peter’s University in Jersey City, NJ, in the McIntyre Room, Dinneen Hall.

Join educators, faculty, students, alumni, career-advancement professionals, and recruiters from the following institutions: Bergen Community College; Bloomfield College; Brookdale Community College; College of St. Elizabeth; Drew University; Georgian Court University; Kean University; Monmouth University; Montclair State University; New Jersey City University; Rider University; Rowan University; Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey; Saint Peter’s University; Seton Hall University; UMDNJ; and William Paterson University.

Special guest speaker Camelia M. Valdes, Esq., the first woman prosecutor in Passaic County Courts and the first Latina county prosecutor in the state, will talk about the role of education and lifelong learning, the importance of mentorship and leadership development, and strategies to move forward despite racial, gender, and socioeconomic barriers.

Edward Bullock, president and CEO of Bullock Innovation Group “B.I.G.” and a long-time supporter of the American Conference on Diversity, will be recognized with our “Pursuit of Excellence in Higher Education” award. Bullock recently retired from L’Oreal as vice president, diversity & inclusion after 20-plus years with the world’s largest beauty company. In this position, Bullock served on the L’Oreal USA Executive Committee and spent the last decade building the company’s first office of Diversity & Inclusion. With a focus on workforce, workplace, and marketplace diversity, Bullock was responsible for introducing diversity and inclusion training programs globally, increasing L’Oreal’s diverse talent pool, creating a robust minority supplier diversity council, and playing a pivotal role in L’Oreal’s philanthropic endeavors. Bullock also regularly interacted with L’Oreal USA brands on multicultural advertising.

Educational thought leaders Dr. Rochelle Hendricks, Secretary of NJ Higher Education, and Ebony Thomas, Director, Campus & Diversity Recruiting at Prudential, will lead a panel discussion with Valdes after her keynote speech.

In addition, the following eight experiential workshops, each facilitated by academics, diversity practitioners, social-justice leaders, or EEO experts, will further move the discussion forward:

●Navigating Diversity: The Role of Corporate, Non-profit and Government Employers in Positioning this Diverse Generation in the Modern Workplace

●The Screwed Generation? Fact or Fiction?

●School Choice: Making NJ Education More – or Less -Accessible?

●Multicultural Education: Serving the Underserved and Undocumented

● Digital Access: Technology and the Digital Divide

●The Value of a General Liberal Arts Education and the Practical Application of Professional Studies: Keys for Access and Professional Success

●ACCESS Beyond the Degree: Retooling and Developing Job Skills to Provide You Access in a Knowledge-based Society

●Affirmative Action and Diversity: The Legal Landscape for Access and Diversity Initiatives since the Bakke Decision

Registration rates are $65, including breakfast and lunch, and $35 for students (ID required). For the full agenda and to register, visit….