Hidden in Plain Sight: The Black Women's Blueprint for Institutional Transformation in Higher Education Academic Article uri icon


  • Many institutional leaders find themselves struggling to achieve racial equity in a sociopolitical context where hatemongering, misogyny, xenophobia, heterosexism, and racism have been normalized and minoritized students, staff, and faculty have been relegated to the margins. Few institutional leaders (e.g., presidents, provosts, chancellors, boards of trustees, deans) understand how, why, and the extent to which minoritized peoples are affected by multiple and overlapping forms of oppression. As a result, institutional change efforts to transform campuses into identity-affirming and socially just learning environments often prove ineffective because college and university leaders typically engage in single-axis identity politics to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion. In this article, the authors challenge institutional leaders to take up intersectionality as a method of engaging in lasting transformational change that promises to advance racial equity in higher education. The authors also expose the limitations of existing institutional change models by highlighting their intersectional failures and prompt readers to imagine Black women as possibility models for institutional change that transforms higher education and advances racial equity.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Patton, L. D., & Haynes, C.

citation count

  • 20

complete list of authors

  • Patton, Lori D||Haynes, Chayla

publication date

  • December 2018