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About the Search Advocate Program 

The Office for Diversity and Inclusion is pleased to announce the establishment of the Search Advocate pilot program. Inclusive Advocacy is a recruitment tool that can be requested by deans, chairs or unit heads in faculty and staff searches to enhance inclusive excellence in university hiring. Advocates are Carolina faculty, staff, and administrators who are trained as search and selection advisors. These advocates receive enhanced training on current research and best practices about fairness, inclusion, and non-discriminatory hiring. Advocates will provide support to chairs and committees who request their assistance through each stage of the search process. The Search Advocates will support the University’s commitment to fair and equitable hiring by working with the search committees to implement best practices on matters such as establishing neutral, but specific questions for candidates, crafting rubrics that allow for fair evaluation of candidates and their qualifications for specific competencies and job requirements, and ensuring all candidates experience a fair and impartial recruitment and interview process. 

Why is this important to UNC? 

Members of the campus community who serve in this capacity further demonstrate their service to UNC Chapel Hill and creating an inclusive environment for all.  

In partnership with the search chair, search committee, Provost’s office and University Office for Diversity and Inclusion, and the hiring official, the selected individual will support the Universities commitment to fair and equitable hiring. 

 Adhere to all UNC Human Resources search committee guidance   

  • Agree to a two-year commitment   
  • Complete UNC Search Committee training  
  • Complete UODI Search Advocate training (16 hours) 
  • Support the committee in using best practices for evaluating applicant pools equitably  
  • Raise awareness about unconscious assumptions and offer mitigation strategies throughout the selection process   
  • Help develop interview questions and rubrics that are fair and address the job requirements 
  • Ensure that all voices are heard and address potentially inequitable behavior within the search process 
  • Act as a facilitator to process known obstacles to equitable decision-making such as negativity bias, halo effects, and references to “good fit”

Becoming a Search Advocate 

Each department may recommend up to three members from their department. Individuals recommended for this position must complete the required Search Advocate application form to be considered. 


Be a full-time, permanent employee at UNC Chapel Hill.  Faculty applicants must be at the rank of associate or full professor (fixed-term or tenured). EHRA Non-faculty SAAO Tier I or Tier II employees are also eligible to apply. 

Q: What is the time commitment? 

A: In addition to the two-year commitment and required training, Search Advocates are expected to participate in the work of the search committee. The amount of time can vary depending on the search process within the assigned department.  

Q: How often will I be expected to serve on a search committee? 

A: Search advocates must complete at least 1 search committee assignment each academic year.

Q: How does a department request a search advocate?  

A: Departments can request an advocate by submitting an online request form. 

If you have additional questions about the Search Advocate Program, please email