Dr. Jane Irungu

LOGAN – Following a six-month national search, Utah State University has found the school’s first Vice President of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.

Dr. Jane Irungu comes to USU from the University of Oklahoma where she serves as the associate provost of inclusive excellence.

She will join USU’s executive cabinet July 1.

USU’s Diversity and Inclusion Task Force, formed three years ago by President Noelle Cockett, recommended the creation of the vice president position. Irungu will become USU’s executive-level strategist responsible for guiding practices and creating opportunities to define, assess and promote inclusive excellence.

We want to insure Utah State is a place where all people feel they belong and can thrive,” said President Cockett. “Dr. Irungu has years of experience working with students, faculty and staff in strategic leadership roles, as well as a being a teacher.”

Results from USU’s first diversity and inclusion survey, released in June, 2021, indicated students with an underrepresented identity status reported a lower sense of belonging on campus. Also, students with a disability, LGBTQIA+ students, students of color and international students reported feeling less safe in the classroom and found USU to be less welcoming.

Previously, Irungu served at the University of Oregon as assistant vice-president in the division of equity and inclusion and director of the Center for Multicultural Academic Excellence.

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