Elizabeth Garland

Elizabeth Garland

Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging
Western Carolina University

Elizabeth Garland is the Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging and has been at Carolina Day since 2015. She has held many roles at CDS, including the Assistant Director of Alumni Relations and Community Engagement in the Advancement Department and serving as a student advisor. 

Get to know Elizabeth Garland:

In what ways can you teach/engage children at CDS that you couldn't at other schools? I am deeply rooted and invested in Carolina Day. I possess the Wildcat spirit and I am not afraid to show it. I am proud of the foundation that Carolina Day provided for me, and I can engage the children by simply being excited about Carolina Day ­— the changes on campus, the athletic teams, and the students themselves.”

What do you like most about your job at CDS?
“I love the staff! Every person I work with enjoys what they do. It is even more exciting to come back as an alumnus and be part of the faculty and staff! The staff, teachers, and to my delight even our dedicated maintenance crew recall my awkward adolescence.” 

In your opinion, how does the CDS community inspire students to be courageous and curious, wonder about things that they don’t understand, try new things, and develop individual passions?  
“Because CDS is an independent school, we have the luxury of challenging our students to think creatively, live fearlessly, and explore personal interests. The teachers are not just teaching the students, but they are learning from them as well. It is essential for students to feel important, be heard, and supported by faculty. Carolina Day allows students to develop their visions into realities.”

What books and authors inspire you?
“Maya Angelou’s words resonate with me. I can feel and relate to her raw emotion. When I need to find self-motivation I read something of hers, and it inspires me.

What is your favorite quote about education, mentorship, children, and/or learning?
“It is the supreme art of the teacher to awaken joy in creative expression and knowledge.”
- Albert Einstein

How would you describe yourself and/or your approach to your job in 10 words or less?
I am a dedicated, unstoppable, passionate, creative, go-getter.”

What personal passion brings balance to your life?
“Dancing and writing are my two forms of freedom. Since I was able to walk, I have danced. I love the art and expression of ballet and contemporary styles of dance. I love to write poetry, and short stories.”

How is CDS different from what you experienced as a child in school? Why/how is what you see now valuable?
“Carolina Day continues to grow and build on core values. The materials, teachers, and classrooms have changed since I attended Carolina Day. I can see that the curriculum is continuing to evolve to let students find themselves.”