hey, I'm SHERI

I'm an academic consultant, coach, podcast host, and speaker who believes in creating a thriving and supportive community.

A native of Illinois, I'm a graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where I earned my Bachelor of Science in community health and Master of Education in educational and vocational technology. 

I'm currently completing my doctorate at Illinois in Community Health with prior coursework in Education Policy and Organizational Development. I also hold a degree from the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in merchandise marketing and product development, and am completing classes in the UNCW Master of Health Administration graduate degree program.

I love school. Can you tell?!

As an academic administrator, I work to cultivate trust, leadership, and developmental opportunities to engage and promote academic excellence, personal accountability, diversity, inclusion, community engagement, and institutional responsibility.

My personal and professional philosophy is rooted in personal branding, leadership, self-confidence, community, personal awareness, and family.

I began my academic career at Illinois, where I created and received a $2 million-dollar endowment to expand my Enrichment and Outreach Program into the award-winning Mannie L. Jackson Illinois Academic Enrichment and Leadership Program (I-LEAP) within the College of Applied Health Sciences.  After Illinois, I worked at Drexel University in the LeBow College of Business, developing policies and operations to enhance efficiency and the student experience as the director of undergraduate student services, including the implementation and management of the President’s award-winning student enrichment program, LeBow BRIDGE. Prior to UNCW, I worked directly for Mannie Jackson as his Chief of Staff, overseeing a multi-million-dollar program proposal and new structural builds in Jackson’s hometown of Edwardsville, Illinois.

Outside of my professional role, I create high impact practices focusing on quality of life and building sustainable resources for families and communities.  I have a strong interest in establishing and defining family infrastructures to support and educate the African American aging population. As a kidney donor (July 2001), I work diligently to educate others and share my story on the impact of organ donation and the familial and health impacts of asthma and diabetes.

I created a small business, Black Woman Working (BWW) and moderate a BWW syndicated podcast that creates a safe space for authentic conversations shared by black women working through personal and professional goals, setbacks and successes. Additionally, I serve on leadership panels focused on leadership for the Inspiration Lab, and the Wilma Leadership Institute. 


In her professional tenure, thus far, Shaw, a first-generation student, has fought to provide resources to underserved communities and students, with a focus to build awareness, equitable resources, experiences, and education. As a result of her efforts on diversity and inclusion, she was the youngest to be awarded the Larine Y. Cowan "Make a Difference" Award by the Office of Equal Opportunity and Access and the Robert P. Larsen Human Development Award from the University of Illinois. Shaw led team initiatives that resulted in I-LEAP receiving the outstanding program award from the National Academic Advising Association (NACADA).   Additionally, Shaw received the President’s Award for Intercultural Engagement and Diversity from Drexel University, due to her innovative work with the LeBow BRIDGE Program. Shaw has also received award recognition from the alumni associations of Drexel and Illinois due to her efforts to increase institutional retention, persistence and graduation rates of underrepresented and underserved students during and after her tenure. While at UNCW, Shaw has been recognized for her work within the community and on campus. Alongside other CHHS leadership team members and advisors, Shaw received the UNCW System Digital Platinum Award for Online Innovation. Additionally, Shaw received the 2019 YWCA Lower Cape Fear Woman of the Year Award for Education.

Possessing a strong professional background in collaboration, retention, recruitment, program development and diversity, she enjoys the opportunity to work with students, staff, faculty, administrators, community leaders and other constituents to promote project, program, and student success.  As the Assistant Dean for Student Success, Shaw has worked to increase graduate and undergraduate student engagement, expanded retention initiatives, and organized new outreach initiatives for main campus, online and extension students within the college, across campus, and within the community.  In the spring of 2018, Shaw completed Leadership North Carolina (LNC) and Leadership Wilmington; and in the spring of 2019, Shaw completed the Wilma Leadership Institute. Additionally, Shaw serves as a board member for: Leadership North Carolina, Willie Stargell Foundation, Wilma Leadership Advisory Board, YWCA Lower Cape Fear and the North Carolina Community College Foundation. This year, Shaw was appointed to serve as the Program Coordinator for the launch of a BRIDGE program; creating a retention and recruitment tool to service and support minority students at UNCW.

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Real conversations candidly exploring black women working to reach their goals.

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Don't leave without grabbing a shirt or mug from the Black Woman Working Shop. New designs are added monthly!

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