Excellence Through Diversity Series Live Stream (Archived)

As a service to the public, the University of Virginia School of Engineering and Applied Science is offering a live stream archive of our speakers.

The Excellence Through Diversity Distinguished Learning Series is organized by the Office of Diversity and Engagement in the UVA School of Engineering and Applied Science.

The Distinguished Learning Series affirms UVA Engineering's core value of excellence through diversity with a year-long speaker series from September 2017 through March 2018 . 

Excellence Through Diversity Distinguished Learning Series Features Angela Davis

Angela Davis, through her activism and scholarship over the last decades, has been deeply involved in our nation’s quest for social justice.


Angela Davis' work as an educator – both at the university level and in the larger public sphere – has always emphasized the importance of building communities of struggle for economic, racial, and gender justice. She has authored 9 books and has lectured throughout the United States as well as in Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia, and South America. She draws upon her own experiences in the early seventies as a person who spent eighteen months in jail and on trial, after being placed on the FBI’s “Ten Most Wanted List.”

The Angela Davis event was supported by the University of Virginia Bicentennial with funding provided by the Alumni Board of Trustees, and by many UVA partners

Excellence Through Diversity Distinguished Learning Series Features Michelle Alexander

Michelle Alexander is a highly acclaimed civil rights lawyer, advocate, and legal scholar.

Excellence Through Diversity Distinguished Learning Series Features Saul Williams

Saul Williams has been breaking ground since his debut album, Amethyst Rock Star, was released in 2001 and executive produced by Rick Rubin.


Ronald Sullivan is the faculty director of the Harvard Criminal Justice Institute and the Harvard Trial Advocacy Workshop.  Professor Sullivan also serves as Faculty Dean of Winthrop House at Harvard College.  He is the first African American ever appointed Faculty Dean in Harvard's history.  He is a founding member and Senior Fellow of the Jamestown Project. Professor Sullivan is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Morehouse College and the Harvard Law School, where he served as President of the Harvard Black Law Students Association and as General Editor of the Harvard BlackLetter Law Journal.

still shot of Michael Sam

Among his many career accolades, Michael Sam was awarded ESPN’s Arthur Ashe Courage Award at the 2014 ESPY’s. Revered for his unwavering courage, graciousness and fortitude, Michael inspires with his personal journey of triumph over intense adversity. Authentic Michael Sam emerged as a powerful and prominent icon for inclusion, a pioneer for the LGBTQ community, and an exemplar of the resilience and tenacity of the human spirit. Heartfelt on the stage, his candor empowers audiences to overcome their own impediments to self-truth, love and acceptance. Watch the livestream.

Excellence Through Diversity Distinguished Learning Series Features Dr. Joy DeGruy

Joy DeGruy, an internationally recognized researcher, educator, author and presenter who provides insight into various cultural and ethnic groups that form the basis of contemporary American society

Excellence Through Diversity Distinguished Learning Series Features Thomas Page McBee

Thomas Page McBee's talk addressed media narratives of masculinity, trans-ness, and the responsibility we all have to live intentionally in our genders, whatever they are.

Excellence through Diversity Distinguished Learning Series Features Dr. Eduardo Bonilla-Silva

Dr. Bonilla-Silva's talk, "The Diversity Blues: Reframing the Diversity Agenda at HWCUs (Historically White Colleges and Universities)," addressed the problem of structural racism in higher education in the United States.

Excellence Through Diversity Distinguished Learning Series Features Dr. Mae Jemison

Astronaut and physician Mae Jemison, the first African-American woman in space, urged an enthralled audience at the University of Virginia on Sept. 20 to recapture the sense of infinite possibilities people felt when the United States was racing to reach the moon.