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DEIB Practitioner

I have prioritized and exhibited a dedication to diversity, equity, and inclusion in leadership positions and through my faculty responsibilities across teaching, research, and engagement. I have been charged with many roles that focused on inclusion (e.g., founding director of Women’s Studies & Gender Research at Colorado State, Equity Advisor for the College of Human Sciences, search committee service, leading diversity and mentoring initiatives at departmental, college, and university levels). Infusing diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging initiatives into teaching, scholarship, and engagement activities is essential in academia. One point of pride for me at Iowa State has been my leadership role in the Sustaining the Academic Pipeline for Graduate Students and Faculty of Color: A Workshop Series to Launch the Trajectory from Graduate Student to Administrator — a campus-wide five-part workshop series funded by the Women’s and Diversity Grants Program; designed to identify needs, perceptions, and concerns of graduate students and faculty of color. I also led the College of Human Science Innovative Teaching Initiatives Grant entitled, “Mission Inclusion: Broadening Perspectives through Curriculum and Practice” for faculty in the College of Human Sciences. As department chair, I proactively brought in outside consultants for programming on underrepresented groups, for example, but not limited to Pride Month and Black History functions. 


Throughout my 33 years in academia, I have demonstrated my value of the recruitment and retention of a diverse group of students, faculty, and staff. I am excited about working in and leading a college that supports graduate students engaging in diverse: disciplines, scholarly dissemination methods, and populations of students, staff, and faculty. For me, creating an inclusive and supportive college wide culture is an essential component of retaining students, staff, and faculty. I have a strong record of mentoring students and faculty at Iowa State University and other universities. As dean for the Graduate College, I would encourage and support various mentoring initiatives for students, staff, and faculty.  


I view education as a partnership between student and teacher, in which the aim is to enhance life within our environments. My goal as an educator is to challenge students to strive beyond their expectations, thus empowering them with confidence in their abilities to thrive in our multi-faceted society. Education provides a foundation for students to develop a sense of humanity, sensitivity, and accountability towards individuals and the environment in which they live. For me, this goal is attained by focusing my teaching on the following: 1) preparation for the industry and 2) appreciation of diversity among humans.

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