Indiana University Bloomington is pleased to announce that Sachet Kiara Watson, M.S., has been named the Hudson & Holland Scholars Program (HHSP) director. She will assume her duties on July 1. Watson will be the first Hudson & Holland alum to direct the program.
First created in April 1987, the Hudson & Holland Scholars Program began as two separate entities: the Minority Achievers Program and the Mathematics and Science Scholarship Program. In 2004, the program was renamed in recognition of Herman C. Hudson, one of the first African American leaders at Indiana University, and James P. Holland, one of Indiana University’s most prolific and notable faculty members.
Today, HHSP represents Indiana University’s largest merit-based scholarship and support program. The effort, which supports students with the resources and opportunities they need to be successful at IU and beyond, has served more than 2,100 high-achieving, underrepresented students and provided more than $10.2 million in financial assistance.
“The Hudson & Holland Scholars Program is an integral part of IU’s diversity-related work to recruit, support and retain students from underrepresented backgrounds,” says James C. Wimbush, vice president for diversity, equity and inclusion and Johnson Chair for Diversity and Leadership. “Sachet’s extensive expertise and background in inclusion, diversity, equity and access work will be a tremendous asset to HHSP and current and future scholars.”
In her new position, Watson will collaborate with academic and program directors of the Office of the Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion to promote student success and build an active learning environment for HHSP scholars; budget and manage the program’s general fund; work with campus partners to aid in recruiting, retaining and graduating HHSP participants; and develop initiatives and programs that respond to the need of HHSP scholars, as well as other activities.
Prior to this appointment, Watson served as director for Inclusion, Diversity, Equity + Access at the Eskenazi School of Art, Architecture + Design in Bloomington. Her duties there included developing programs, initiatives and events to promote social justice, equity, diversity and inclusion; facilitating cultural competency education curriculum for all students, staff and faculty in the school; advising the dean, school executive leadership, students, faculty and staff on matters of inclusion, diversity, equity and managing the operating and programming budget, among other responsibilities.
Watson’s professional experience also includes roles as diversity and inclusion coordinator for the IUB Jacobs School of Music and the Eskenazi School of Art Architecture & Design and assistant director for the Office of Student Diversity & Inclusion at the Indiana University Bloomington School of Public Health. She also serves as a faculty advisor for Indiana University’s inaugural Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Leadership Certification.
Watson received a Bachelor of Science in Public Affairs in 2012 from Indiana University Bloomington and earned her Master of Science in Higher Education in 2014 from Florida State University.
“As a proud Hudson & Holland alumna, I am beyond excited to lead the Hudson & Holland Scholars Program, to collaborate with the amazing staff and to create an environment and support system for scholars that includes every school within the university, that will enable scholars to thrive and persist to graduation and their dreams beyond degree completion. I firmly believe all students should be able to flourish, grow and exceed expectations. I want this for Hudson & Holland scholars,” Watson says.