Dr. LaRuth McAfee joined the University of Wisconsin-Madison Graduate School in July 2014 as Assistant Dean for Diversity, Inclusion, and Funding. In this role she oversees programs aimed at increasing the number and success of diverse graduate students through recruitment efforts, initiatives to support students while at UW-Madison, and support of academic program-based diversity initiatives. Key recruitment efforts include the McNair Scholars Program and Summer Research Opportunities Program, while oversight of the Multicultural Graduate Network and support for the eight Graduate Research Scholar communities are primary mechanisms to support current students. Dr. McAfee additionally oversees funding programs for current graduate students to support their academic progression. This includes funding allocated to graduate programs for their students or support provided directly to students for thesis-related travel. Details are available at http://grad.wisc.edu/diversity/ and http://grad.wisc.edu/funding/.
Prior to UW-Madison, Dr. McAfee served as Director of Student Engagement and Community Building in the BOLD Center at the University of Colorado Boulder’s College of Engineering and Applied Science. In that position, she provided vision and led the development of academic and student support programs for diverse undergraduate CU Engineering students. These included mentorship programs, support for residential communities, and oversight of scholarship programs.
Dr. McAfee is a native of Ann Arbor, MI, and a chemical engineer with degrees from the University of Michigan (BSE) and MIT (PhD). Over the past 13 years, she has focused on engineering education, having spent a year doing a National Academy of Engineering-sponsored engineering education postdoctoral research project and three years as Executive Director for Education at a Science & Technology Center headquartered at Case Western Reserve University. From these experiences, she especially enjoys working with students to help them along whatever career path meets their interests, whether that leads to a traditional or non-traditional career.