As an important step in MIT’s continuing efforts to create a more welcoming and inclusive community, the Institute has hired six new Assistant Deans, one at each school and at MIT’s Stephen A. Schwarzman College of Computing, to serve as Diversity , equity, and integration professionals.
Scheduled to be in place by fall 2021, these new positions are the result of the February 2020 recommendations of the MIT working groups tasked with implementing the findings of the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine report. (NASEM) on sexuality and sexist harassment of women in universities. Together, these reports called for “a network of community development support, advocacy and expertise across campus to improve our community culture.” MIT President L. Rafael Reif echoed these commitments to new staff and new resources in his July 2020 letter to the community on systemic racism.
“MIT’s success in developing solutions to the world’s greatest challenges depends on our ability to attract and retain a diverse and collaborative community, and these appointments will help us strengthen this vibrant community,” said Provost Martin Schmidt. “This talented group will be an invaluable resource to all members of our community as we deploy and implement our DCI strategic action plan. I welcome them to MIT and look forward to engaging with them in this work.
All six studies were conducted simultaneously and coordinated by the Institute Community and Equity Office (ICEO). John Dozier, who heads the ICEO, will serve as the “dotted line” supervisor for the six Deputy Deans. Dozier, along with ICEO Deputy Director Maryanne Kirkbride and Associate Marshal Tim Jamison, interviewed the candidates during the search process; together, they also co-lead the creation of the DCI strategic action plan.
“The research process itself was like a trial for the types of collaborative practices that we hope to advance with this group,” says Dozier. “We want this team to build on what we’ve already learned by working together. But we also want them to add their ideas and new perspectives to the challenges we face, ”he adds. “This is an extremely exciting opportunity to build community at MIT. “
The new assistant deans are:
- Alana anderson, Associate Dean for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in the
MIT Schwarzman College of Computer Science. She began her role on June 14. More recently, Anderson was Director of Diversity and Inclusion Programs in the Office of the Provost at Boston University. She has spent her career in higher education with roles focused on student engagement, diversity and inclusion at Babson College, Bentley University and the Office of Student Activities at MIT. Anderson received his BA in Politics from Brandeis University, an MA in Higher Education and Student Affairs from Indiana University, and a PhD in Higher Education from Boston College.
- Nandi Bynoé, Assistant Dean for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at the School of Engineering. It will start on July 6. Bynoe was the Associate Dean of Diversity and Inclusion at Tufts Schools of Arts, Sciences and Engineering since 2019. She helped create and establish Tufts’ Bias Education and Resources team to address incidents of prejudice, discrimination, and hatred on campus. Prior to her current role, she worked in Student Services and Student Affairs and was the Senior Sexual Misconduct Resource Specialist at the Tufts Center for Awareness, Resources and Education. Bynoe received a BA in International Relations and an MA in Educational Studies from Tufts.
- Kuheli Dutt, Associate Dean for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at the School of Science. It will start on August 1st. Most recently, Dutt was Deputy Director of Academic Affairs and Diversity at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, where she oversaw the diversity, equity and inclusion efforts related to appointments. and promotions, salary structures, mentoring. , awards and recognition, governance and advancement of young scientists since 2008. Her research on implicit bias, gender, race, LGBTQ + awareness and STEM has been published in many prominent journals and widely covered by the media. Dutt holds a BA in Economics from Lady Shri Ram College and a PhD in Public Policy from Northeastern University.
- Tracie jones, Assistant Dean for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at the School of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences. It will start on July 1. Most recently, Jones was Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Membership at Harvard Graduate School of Education. In this role, she has worked to advance initiatives and develop programs for faculty, staff and students. She received a Bachelor of Liberal Arts in Extension Studies and Sociology from Harvard University and a Masters in Higher Education Administration from Northeastern University. She also has certifications from the Social Justice Training Institute, the London School of Economics and Political Science, and the Harvard Kennedy School.
- Monique Orta, Assistant Dean for Diversity, Equity, Belonging and Student Support at the School of Architecture and Urbanism. It will start on June 28. Orta has been Director of Diversity and Student Support at the MIT Media Lab since 2014. Bringing together data, both quantitative and qualitative, she crafted a bold strategic plan that required new admissions processes, increased student involvement. teachers, and community programming. She received a BA in Psychology from Boston University and an MA in Education from Northeastern University. Prior to joining the Media Lab, Orta worked on diversity initiatives, including the MIT Summer Research Program, in the MIT Higher Education Office.
- Bryan Thomas Jr., Assistant Dean for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at MIT Sloan School of Management. It will start in August. Thomas has been Associate Director of the Doctoral Fellowship Program for Enhancing Diversity in Higher Education at Stanford University since 2019. Previously, Thomas was Deputy Director of Higher Education and Diversity Programs at the Stanford School of Medicine and worked as an academic achievement and retention specialist at Drake University. He received a BA in Communication from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and an MA in Higher Education Administration from Florida International University, and is currently pursuing a PhD in Higher Education Leadership at Colorado. State University.
This group of new recruits is important, Dozier notes, and more are in the works. A search is underway to create a senior executive position in the office of the vice president of research, and several university departments have already hired diversity officers or have research underway.
“I can’t wait to see this group come together and help connect it with the many other community building efforts across MIT,” Dozier said. “There are a lot of people in the MIT community who are already working in this area, and it’s starting to sound like critical mass.”