Tech Transfer Central
University-Industry Engagement Advisor

Creating an Environment for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in University Research and Tech Transfer

Format: On-Demand Video/Transcript, or DVD
Originally presented: Wednesday, July 28, 2021

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Price: $197
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To address the realities of systemic racial, gender, and cultural inequities in higher education, many universities are actively striving to improve equality, diversity, and inclusion within their institutions — not only for their student population, but also in their research and commercialization activity. But what strategies or programs will best help them achieve this goal?

When one thinks of EDI (equity, diversity and inclusion), The University of Utah may not be the first school that comes to mind. But it is a leading voice in the movement toward full representation, having established its EDI division to nurture a safe and inclusive environment while instilling the same values throughout the research and commercialization ecosystem within — and surrounding — the university.

The EDI division’s leaders, experts and educators partner with all colleges, departments and the broader community to help develop initiatives aimed at fostering more awareness, advocacy, and action to address systemic inequities. This involves many thoughtful, meaningful and often difficult conversations focused on building a commitment to cultural transformation in practice, policy, and processes.

Our Distance Learning Division has teamed up with the leadership of the U of Utah’s EDI division to bring you this thought-provoking webinar:

Creating an Environment for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in University Research and Tech Transfer

Please join our panelists from the University of Utah, Mary Ann Villarreal, PhD, Vice President of EDI, and Andrew Weyrich, Vice President for Research, as they discuss strategies for creating and growing an EDI program that addresses inequities in the university research enterprise and creates research commercialization opportunities for under-represented groups. Here’s a quick look at the agenda:

  • Overview of EDI efforts at the University of Utah
    • What it means to lead with equity
    • One U Thriving
  • Overview of the research enterprise at the University of Utah
  • EDI efforts in UU research
    • EDI programs, processes, tracking, and measures of success
  • Personal and professional stories of the EDI journey

Meet your expert panel:

Mary Ann VillarrealDr. Mary Ann Villarreal
Vice President for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion
University of Utah

Dr. Mary Ann Villarreal is fueled by an unwavering commitment to ensure the doors to receiving a degree remain open and the table is set for everyone to participate. As the inaugural vice president for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion at the University of Utah, she provides leadership and strategic oversight of diversity and inclusion initiatives across the University’s academic and health sciences campuses. Since her arrival in Utah, Villarreal has been focused on growing the EDI division to meet the growing needs of the university by launching One U Thriving as a platform to unite the EDI work across the campus and establishing the EDI Strategic Planning Council to ensure alignment with the University’s strategic plan.  

Understanding the importance of fostering difficult and meaningful conversations amongst people with diverse backgrounds and opinions, Villarreal established “Friday Forums on Racism in Higher Education” to bridge the national conversation with the State of Utah and the “Reframing the Conversation” panel series to increase dialogue amongst students, faculty, and staff.  Villarreal works to strengthen equity through organizational transformation in practice, policy, and processes at the U and in higher education. In doing so, she also serves on the Association of American Colleges & Universities’ Board of Directors, the executive committee of the Association of Public Land-Grant Universities’ Commission on Access, Diversity and Excellence, and TIAA Inclusion Council.

Andrew WeyrichAndrew Weyrich, PhD
Vice President for Research
University of Utah
President, Research Foundation at the University of Utah and Innovation District
Professor of Internal Medicine
H.A. & Edna Benning Presidential Endowed Chair

Dr. Andrew Weyrich is a Professor of Internal Medicine, Vice President for Research, and President of the Research Foundation at the University of Utah. Dr. Weyrich’s research lab, which focuses on blood clotting in health and disease, has been continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health for over 20 years. Based on his seminal discoveries in the field of Hematology, Dr. Weyrich was awarded the prestigious William Dameshek prize from the American Society of Hematology.  He also serves on the NIH National Heart, Lung and Blood Advisory Council.

In addition to Dr. Weyrich’s prolific research work, as a leader of the U’s research community, Dr. Weyrich has implemented strategic initiatives and programs that continue to drive diverse and inclusive research excellence at the U and also contributes more than $500 million annually to the Utah economy. During his service, the U’s research portfolio has been on an upward trajectory with an average annual increase of 27% in extramural awards that totaled over $3.5 billion dollars. He has also launched numerous research programs, including Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion in Research.

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