Administration Creates New Vice Chancellor Diversity Position

UCSD will create a new position called Vice Chancellor for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion beginning July 1 to address the university’s diversity efforts.

The VC EDI position was established to expand upon diversity efforts formerly overseen by the chief diversity officer, according to Executive Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs and molecular biology professor Suresh Subramani.

The current chief diversity officer, pediatrics professor Sandra Daley, will conclude her three-year term on June 30.

At this time, the part-time position will transition into the full-time VC EDI role.

Subramani said that the administration believes creating a full-time diversity leader position is the most cost-effective structure.

“We have not yet determined where the VC EDI’s office will be located, nor do we have salary estimates at this time,” Subramani said in an email. “At senior administrator levels, salary is typically negotiated after a candidate has been identified.”

While the details of the position are not secure, the VC EDI will be part of the Chancellor’s Cabinet.

“The VC EDI will be a member of the Chancellor’s Cabinet, continuing the practice of the Chief Diversity Officer as an integral advisor to the campus leadership,” Subramani said

Associate Vice President Diversity Affairs Alyssa Peace supports the position and hopes that the VC EDI will create paid internships to allow students who already support diversity efforts to spend more time on their respective projects.

“I think it’s a good idea because the vice chancellor position will be able to secure funds in a way other positions can’t,” Peace said.  “I think it’s an institutional position that we’ve been needing for a long time.”

Peace said she believes that students must be on the hiring committee for the position to be successful.

Following last year’s March 4 meeting regarding campus diversity, Chancellor Marye Anne Fox has been consulting administrative groups — including the Academic Senate Council, Campus Climate Council, academic deans and the Chancellor’s Council — regarding the most effective methods of addressing these issues.

The meeting was held in response to racial tensions stemming from incidents in Winter Quarter 2010, such as a party mocking Black History Month, a noose found in Geisel Library and a white hood placed on the Dr. Seuss statue.

Fox decided that having a full-time diversity leader was necessary.

According to Subramani, establishing the VC EDI position within Academic Affairs will ensure greater collaboration among faculty, staff and student diversity offices, programs and initiatives.

It is also the most cost-effective organizational structure, according to Subramani.

Daley will serve as an adviser to Subramani until the VC EDI permanent position has been filled.

The VC EDI will report directly to Subramani as a member of the Chancellor’s Cabinet and will be assisted by an advisory council representing campus groups.

He or she will be responsible for developing and implementing a campus-wide strategy on equity, diversity and inclusion.

The VC EDI will also propose a system to measure progress and will identify potential areas of administrative responsibility.

Both UC Berkeley and UC San Francisco have similar vice chancellor positions.

The search for the new vice chancellor position will begin later this spring quarter.

Subramani will establish a search committee, whose members will work with him and a national search consultant to develop the VC EDI position description and find qualified candidates to fill the position.

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