Influencing a variety of institutions to achieve equity within their own institutions and in collaboration with the broader community.
Create brave spaces for individuals to engage in inter-group dialogue
Facilitate "eye-opening" activities promoting self-awareness
University of Illinois at Chicago - College of Pharmacy
2008 - 2012
Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.), Magna Cum Laude, Pharmacy
Activities & Societies: Rho Chi Honor Society, Phi Lambda Sigma Leadership Society
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign - College of Business
1998 - 2001
Bachelor of Science (B.S.), Finance with Honors
DR. NICOLE AVANT
SOCIAL JUSTICE EDUCATOR
Nicole D. Avant, Pharm.D., BCACP serves as the Founder and Owner of Avant Consulting Group. Additionally, she is a pharmacist and a professor at the University of Cincinnati. Previously, she served as the clinical assistant professor and chief diversity officer for the University of Cincinnati College of Pharmacy where she was hired as the first Black woman faculty member and the only Black faculty member at the 4th oldest college of pharmacy in the nation. Dr. Avant, who uses she/her pronouns, is a scholar and professor who cultivates structural competence through various courses. She teaches implicit bias, racial/ethnic health disparities, and inclusive leadership in health. She illustrates not only the importance of mitigating bias but also the structural forces that encourage these biases in the first place.
As a researcher, she has produced trailblazing scholarship related to bias. She is the first to publish the implicit attitudes about race among first year pharmacy students in her manuscript entitled Qualitative Analysis of Student Pharmacists’ Reflections of Harvard’s Race Implicit Association Test. Her recent manuscript, “Not to Exclude You, But…”: Characterization of Pharmacy Student Microaggressions and Recommendations for Academic Pharmacy, is the first to describe microaggressions experienced by students in academic pharmacy. Her published manuscript, Pushing for Health Equity through Structural Competency and Implicit Bias Education: Qualitative Evaluation of a Racial/Ethnic Health Disparities Elective Course for Pharmacy Learners is the first of its kind to discuss how to facilitate challenging conversations (e.g., impact of bias and structural inequities) in a college of pharmacy.
Another manuscript published, Supporting and Navigating Marginalized Identities in Dominant Pharmacy Spaces, is an autoethnography describing the experiences of a Black woman navigating implicit bias and structural inequities in pharmacy. Her more recent publication under review, Structural Racism and Supporting Black Lives – A Pharmacist Vow Amid COVID-19 discusses the ways pharmacists are uniquely positioned through their knowledge, skills, and resources to attenuate the effects of structural racism and support Black lives. She is producing unique scholarship in health related to implicit bias, implicit bias manifestations (i.e., microaggressions), navigating power and marginalized identities, and how to cultivate structurally competent clinicians.
She has clinical experience in multiple practice settings from pharmacist-run clinics to inter-professional clinics. She has managed diabetes, hypertension, hyperlipidemia, HIV/AIDS, and warfarin therapy. Consequently, Dr. Avant provides institutional support to anchor institutions such as health systems, health-related organizations, academic institutions, as well as regional and national organizations. Dr. Avant integrates a lot of her programming in the organization’s standing systems. For example, during orientation for a specific health system, her team delivers a workshop, Identity and Inclusion: Exploring Your Identities to Promote an Inclusive Workplace and Workforce, every other week. She also trains new leaders at a quarterly meeting, “Not to Exclude You, But…”: Uncovering and Mitigating Our Biases. Overall, she has developed a curriculum to train and educate clinicians, councils on diversity, c-suite leaders, other administrators, as well as other employees regarding topics such as bias, interpersonal power dynamics, inclusive leadership, multiple levels of inequities, structural inequities, Black history, gender politics, fat antagonism, and many others.
Dr. Avant has held many University and national leadership positions. She served as the morale committee chair for the University of Cincinnati Black Faculty Association. She also served as a member of the University of Cincinnati LGBTQ Center Faculty and Staff Advisory Board. Nationally, she served as the treasurer for the National Pharmaceutical Association (NPhA). NPhA is an organization dedicated to representing the views and ideals of minority pharmacists on critical issues affecting health care. Other leadership positions were held with Pharmacy Quality Assurance, American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy, and American Pharmacists Association as well as serving as reviewers for journals (e.g., Journal of the American Pharmacists Association, American Journal of Pharmacy Education, Currents of Pharmacy Teaching and Learning).
Her awards include:
the 2017 Rising Star Award from the YWCA
the 2017 Rising Star Award from the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Pharmacy
the 2016 and 2017 Black Excellence Award from the University of Cincinnati Black Faculty Association for her academic excellence
the 2016, 2017, and 2019 Breakfast of Champions Award from the University of Cincinnati Darwin T. Turner Scholars Program for her hard work and dedication to student academic achievement
She has been featured and her work has been discussed on PharmacyForward Podcast, Cincinnati Public Radio, WCPO Cincinnati, The Pharmacist, International Pharmacy Journal, NPhA Express, and Pharmacy Today. She has contributed to Cradle Cincinnati’s annual report and blog regarding Black infant mortality as well as racial equity in maternal and infant health.
In terms of her education and training, Dr. Avant has trained at the best institutions. She received her Bachelor of Science in Finance with Honors from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign College of Business. She received her Pharm.D. magna cum laude from the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Pharmacy. Dr. Avant completed two years of post-graduate residency training at the University of Oklahoma (OU) College of Pharmacy. During her training at OU, she acquired foundational and advanced teaching certificates.
Dr. Avant wants to be known as an intersectional scholarly activist advocating for the rights of minoritized groups especially in the context of health. Through professional and personal experiences, Dr. Avant realizes that for true equity to be achieved, we must first become aware of our own positionality in systems of power and work to deconstruct values assumed in American culture such as narrow focus on the individual to describe disparities ignoring systemic root causes, ahistorical, myth of meritocracy, and white supremacist ideologies.
Dr. Avant is not working all the time. During her free time, she enjoys competitively playing games, weightlifting, hanging out with loved ones, dancing, happy hours, music, and traveling. She has 1 daughter and 3 sons that can be easily described as brilliant, strong-willed, curious, leaders, progressive, sensitive, unique, funny, and dynamic. Her husband’s ideation complements Dr. Avant’s strategic thinking and vision for a more equitable world.
QUOTES FROM CLIENTS
Very impressive on how much ease you have guiding difficult conversation. Very interesting group discussion!
I appreciate the environment you all created and the entire energy from the start was amazing.
The presenter was very funny and made a very hard topic easier to talk about.
Amazing presentation! Thank you so much for speaking!
DR. NICOLE D. AVANT