Over the course of her MBU career, she has been a vital resource for DEI expertise and best practices during strategic planning and designing initiatives to serve students.
Often in collaboration with students to bring their interests to life, she has launched and developed nearly 30 programs, celebrations, and organizations to bolster cross-cultural learning and inclusive excellence at the university.
Those programs — like the Ubuntu Student Mentoring Program and the Sista Friends Alumni Mentoring Program — were also consistently focused on supporting students’ academic, emotional, and social wellbeing through relationship-building.
Traditions created through the Office of Inclusive Excellence have become part of the MBU culture as a whole. The Kwanzaa celebration, held each February, is one of the largest events on campus, and the annual Ajani Ceremony — celebrating graduates who have been leaders of diversity programming and inclusive excellence — is a signature event during Commencement weekend. Latinx/Hispanic Heritage Month and Black History Month also bring a slate of cultural events and engagement opportunities to MBU.
Behind each of these efforts, Cornett-Scott has promoted the value of a diverse intellectual and social environment for all students and has centered the voices of historically culturally marginalized students.
Also a member of the philosophy and religion department, Cornett-Scott taught the courses African American Religion and Community and Practice, both of which support the African American studies minor, as well as Faith, Life, and Service and Community Service.
In 2000, she planted Christ Our Redeemer AME Church in downtown Staunton, where she continues to serve as pastor. She has also served as the dean for the AME Virginia Annual Conference Board of Examiners for many years, and last year was named dean of the Second Episcopal District Board of Examiners.
Cornett-Scott attended Howard University and graduated from Morris Brown College, earning a bachelor of arts in Spanish. As an undergraduate, Cornett-Scott also studied abroad in the Dominican Republic at Universidad Católica Madre y Maestra. She earned her master of divinity from Payne Theological Seminary, writing her thesis — “Ain’t Got Time to Die: The African Spiritual Inheritance of the African Methodist Episcopal Church” — on African cultural continuities.
MBU is currently seeking to fill two positions in the Office of Inclusive Excellence, which will report to Cornett-Scott as CDO. The director of inclusive excellence will absorb many of Cornett-Scott’s former duties, leading programmatic efforts to engage communities of difference and support an inclusive learning environment and student success. The office’s program fellow will assist the director with the facilitation and implementation of inclusive excellence programming.