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Alumni M-Pact DEI Certificate Program

DEI M Pact Certificate Program

Program Overview

The goals of the Alumni M-Pact DEI Certificate program are rooted in the University of Michigan’s commitment to strategic diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) work by actively engaging alumni toward this mission. This program is designed to move beyond DEI knowledge acquisition and into action that will impact communities and organizations throughout the world.

Because we are committed to diversity, we aspire to develop and nurture the individual and collective skills to recognize, celebrate, and deploy difference as a path to engagement, innovation, and the generation of new ideas and knowledge.

Program Details

  • The Alumni M-Pact DEI Certificate program is a four-week program, developed by Dr. Deborah Willis, for University of Michigan alumni who are looking to make an immediate impact in their organization and/or community.
  • As participants complete each program module, the DEI information and skills obtained can be incorporated into their respective M-Pact projects as well as individual spheres of influence. 
  • The program will include weekly virtual synchronous sessions followed by a celebratory closing ceremony. 
  • The weekly synchronous sessions will be delivered virtually via Zoom. We will also use Canvas, a web-based learning management system, for additional content and interactive opportunities for the cohort. The Alumni Association Alumni Education Gateway and Wolverine Forum will also be used as additional resources to sustain participant connections and continued learning after the program.
  • Participants will be placed in small learning circles and instructed to meet virtually once a week in addition to the weekly session with the larger cohort. In these weekly sessions, the group will further discuss and unpack the content for the week. 
  • All participants will be assigned coaches to share and gain insight on the DEI initiatives proposed in the applications. Coaches will be U-M alumni with expertise in advancing and sustaining innovative inclusion and equity practices. 
  • The program will include a capstone event where participants can share progress on their DEI initiatives.


All sessions are held on Thursdays via Zoom. All times Eastern.

Module One: Framing DEI Work for Impact and Mitigating Bias
Oct. 7, 2021, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.

Module Two: Interrupting Harm: Bystander Intervention and Allyship 
Oct. 14, 2021, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.

Module Three: Inclusive Leadership
Oct. 21, 2021, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.

Module Four: DEI Commitment in Action: Engaging Communities and Organizations
Oct. 28, 2021, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.

Closing Ceremony
Nov. 4, 2021, 5:30 – 6:30 p.m.

This is a pilot program with limited capacity, so those interested will be required to fill out an application before being accepted into the program.

The application for this program closed on Sept. 17 at 11:59 p.m. ET. Applicants will be notified via email by Sept. 21 regarding acceptance into the pilot program.

Program Details and Outcomes

Learning objectives for participants

  • Increase DEI knowledge 
  • Learn to define and conceptualize DEI terms
  • Gain knowledge of unconscious biases and how to challenge them
  • Learn about the four Ds of Bystander Intervention and how to implement them
  • Learn to act as an ally and educator
  • Reflect on ways to commit to diversity, equity, and inclusion
  • Understand the components of inclusive leadership
  • Learn and reflect on ways to engage with communities respectfully and responsibly 

Desired outcomes of program

  • Foster connections among alumni and between alumni and the university to advance DEI efforts regionally and globally
  • Increase capacity for alumni to create and advance DEI efforts in their spheres of influence
  • Receive an official certificate of completion signed by the Dean of Rackham Graduate School and U-M Chief Diversity Officer


  • $600 for non-Alumni Association members and/or non-Rackham graduates
  • $500 for Alumni Association members and/or Rackham graduates

Participant Expectations

  • Attend live two-hour interactive synchronous modules once a week for four weeks as well as a one-hour closing ceremony
  • Complete, or make concrete progress on, developing a DEI project that will move toward a more inclusive environment in your community
  • Use Canvas to access all program materials, submit reflection assignments, participate in discussion groups, and share additional resources
  • Schedule a conversation with an Alumni M-Pact coach to assist with the implementation of your project
  • Develop a capstone PowerPoint presentation documenting progress on your M-Pact project

For alums with advanced knowledge and expertise related to DEI, we invite you to apply to be a volunteer DEI coach. Apply now.

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