Academics: Interdisciplinary Centers of Excellence

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Spelman College Graduates with President Beverly Daniel Tatum

Interdisciplinary Centers of Excellence

Spelman College has several interdisciplinary centers that support the institution’s mission of academic excellence. Whether global, leadership, spiritual, research or human rights efforts, our centers of excellence serve as a vital anchor in strategically coordinating the work of our faculty, students and staff.

Gordon-Zeto Center for Global Education was established with a $17 million anonymous gift to strengthen and expand international programs at Spelman College.
“In the context of an increasingly global economy and a world made smaller by technology, it is more important than ever that students, faculty and staff are prepared for active engagement with the international community,” said Beverly Daniel Tatum, Ph.D., president of Spelman College. “This generous gift will help expand our global emphasis, ensuring that we remain competitive in a ‘flat world.’ ”

LEADS, or the Center for Leadership and Civic Engagement, was created in 2003 by Dr. Beverly Daniel Tatum, who decided leadership would have a stronger presence at Spelman College. “She wanted to have an anchor spot that would be a place where resources could come together and be identified and distributed to the College to do the work in leadership,” said Jane Smith, Ed.D., executive director of LEADS.





Teaching Resource and Research Center was created in the fall of 2007 with resources from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and the U.S. Department of Education (Title III) to support the continued, long-term development of the faculty to meet the demands of 21st century teaching and learning. TRRC has its roots in the rich tradition of Black women's commitment to the joyfulness of ideas, or what Anna Julia Cooper called, "the thumping from within unanswered by any beckoning from without." (1892)







WISDOM Center, which stands for Women in Spiritual Discernment of Ministry, is a multidimensional student-centered leadership development program that was established in January 2003 with funding from the Lilly Endowment Inc. In our endeavors to strengthen the capacity of Sisters Chapel to bring the power and presence of its spiritual and civil rights legacy together with contemporary and culturally relevant expressions of faith and social justice, an educational infrastructure was established. The purpose of the WISDOM Center is to provide a safe space where students can reflect and critically examine what it means for women of African descent to be called by God and live out their faith.


Women's Research and Resource Center was created in 1981 with a grant from the Charles Stuart Mott Foundation. The goal was to provide an academic unit to the College that focused on curriculum development in Women’s Studies, research by and about women of African descent, and community outreach. WRRC is the first women’s research center at a historically Black college and the first one to offer a women ’s studies major.