Michelle Bryan, associate dean of diversity, equity and inclusion in the College of Education, has been named associate vice president in the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, effective Jan. 1, 2022.
In her new role, Bryan will lead projects and initiatives that align with the institution’s goals and priorities in this area. She will work to facilitate systemic change through collaboration with deans, department chairs, faculty, staff, students, alumni, and other key campus and community leaders.
“I have been fortunate enough to be a part of a team in the College of Education that has been able to facilitate some substantive changes in the college by partnering with our incredible faculty and staff,” Bryan says. “I am excited about taking some of the things I have learned in the college and see how they might unfold at the university level. That this new position will allow me to become part of an even larger team committed to this work is also exciting.”
Bryan has been on the faculty at the University of South Carolina for more than 10 years, first from 2006 to 2015, then returning in 2017.
“Dr. Bryan is an elite diversity, equity and inclusion scholar and practitioner,” said Julian R. Williams, vice president, Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. “Through her leadership within the College of Education she’s had a tremendous impact on her home unit. I look forward to seeing her leadership at a university-wide level as we continue to create a campus culture that affirms all members of our community.”
“Her unique background as a tenured faculty member will bring excellent perspective, as ODEI works closely with our academic unit leadership to increase faculty diversity and reimagine student success frameworks for first-generation students and students of color,” he added.
As associate vice president, one of her first areas of focus will be to collaborate with the Office of the Provost to take up a key aspect of the university’s strategic plan — addressing faculty workload issues.
“There’s some very promising research coming out around the positive impact of using equity-minded faculty workload dashboards and other tools,” Bryan says. “These tools assist colleges and departments to visually represent the work loads of all professors including their teaching, mentorship, committee work and other areas.”
Bryan also looks forward to working with the Office of the Vice President for Research on its Racial Justice and Equity Research Fund, which supports research that centers race, racial justice and racial equity.
Students and the campus environment will also be a high priority for Bryan.
“I am excited to collaborate in making the student experience more inclusive,” she says. “As much as our recruitment efforts are critical, I am more concerned that we have done the work necessary to prepare the space that we are inviting students into.”
Bryan earned a bachelor’s in American history and African American studies; a Master of Arts in Teaching, secondary social sciences; and a Ph.D. in education with a concentration in culture, curriculum and change at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill.