The United Academy for Inclusion and Belonging
The United Academy for Inclusion and Belonging is a seven-hour course training series focused on helping the Springfield area become a more diverse and inclusive community.

Administered by United Way of the Ozarks and led by Dr. Juan Meraz with Missouri State University’s Division for Diversity and Inclusion, the Academy is a constructive investment in helping make your organization more inclusive.

Cultivating systemic change
Academy participants learn the principles of social justice and gain the tools needed to foster an inclusive environment. Course materials are customized for every class to ensure information is especially relevant to participants.

Celebrating Academy scholars
More than 235 first responders, frontline nonprofit professionals, volunteers and board members completed the first set of classes in spring 2021 to become champions of inclusive excellence.

United Academy is expanding. Springfield Rotarians, police officers and firefighters have joined the ranks of United Academy graduates. Classes are planned for the broader community in 2022.


Building community, together 
The forces of racism and inequity affect us all. However, the lack of shared awareness prevents well-meaning professionals from truly making progress toward a more equitable community. The Academy enables hundreds of community leaders, educators, business professionals and public servants to identify and understand the impact of racism on individuals and the workplace.

Interested in inclusive excellence? 
Contact United Way of the Ozarks if you would like information on future offerings of United Academy for Inclusion and Belonging 

Kimberley Lippelman-Nash 
Director of Administration 
E: [email protected] 
P: 417-863-7700 ext. 222