UNH student contributes to the university’s commitment to developing an inclusive, diverse and safe community

by Cassie Hollasch '22 | English, Writing and Business Administration

Sophie Goodwin ’24 (Sociology and Sustainability dual major, minor in Political Science), has been working as the UNH Community Equity and Diversity Intern in a unique partnership with the Sustainability Institute and the Office of Community Equity and Diversity (CED). The CED is UNH’s home for resources promoting diversity, equity, accessibility and inclusion, the foundational values believed to contribute to the best possible educational experience. UNH values the unique characteristics of all community members and advocates for universal safety and comfortable expression in society.  

Allyson Ryder, Assistant Director of the UNH Office of Community Equity and Diversity is proud of Sophie’s work and emphasizes, “being able to better understand the ways our students want to engage on events and speakers on issues related to diversity, equity and inclusion is so important to fulfilling our mission at UNH. UNH hosted several events during Black History Month in February, 2022 which included the Akwaaba Ensemble, Professor Angela Davis, and Service and Learning. These are great events for all of our students to attend and we want to keep getting the word out; Sophie’s work will help us in doing so.” 

Sophie works to promote events and services on campus to expose more students to unique and inclusive educational opportunities. She credits entities such as, the Black Student Union, United Asian Coalition, Planned Parenthood Generation Action and Beauregard Center for their impressive efforts to motivate others and make call to actions that have resulted in positive change within campus operations. She states, “I really hope to learn from these groups and the awesome staff and people at the CED office to really make a difference and help people feel heard at UNH.” 

One project she has been working on is developing a survey to collect data on what motivates students/staff to attend campus events. This can be difficult especially since Covid-19 has affected how we interact with each other and attend events. As a sophomore Sophie has never known a covid-free college experience but is excited to prepare for an inspiring event and critical conversation, “Race and Democracy” featuring Dr. Eddie Glaude on March 31 at 7 p.m. in the MUB Granite State Room. Dr. Glaude is the author of  Democracy in Black: How Race Still Enslaves the American Soul and is the Chair of the Department of African American Studies at Princeton University.  He frequently appears in the media, as a columnist for TIME Magazine and as an MSNBC contributor on programs like Morning Joe and Deadline Whitehouse with Nicolle Wallace. Sophie enthuses, “he has so much incredibly important information to share, and I can't wait to get the word out about it!” To learn more about his appearance at UNH click here.  

Sophie is passionate about fighting for equality and credits the documentary film Racing Extinction as one of the main reasons she developed her passion for sustainability. She was also shaped by UNH Professor Cliff Brown’s course, Environmental Sociology, because it changed “my entire way of thinking, it made me realize how each one of us interacts with, is affected by, and affects the environment. The changing environment, as well as the prioritization of sustainable practices in our lives and institutions like UNH, has completely altered and continues to alter how we live and are organized. Environmental Sociology was a great first class to introduce me to all these relationships.”