March 17, 2023

Associate Professor of English Michaelann Nelson was selected to participate in the Carnegie Mellon-funded Utah Presidential Leadership Fellowship. The fellowship aims to change the expectations that surround leaders, leadership, and leadership development across higher education with a specific focus on the challenges associated with leading for equity, diversity, and inclusion. This fellowship focuses on developing leaders within the humanities and arts to create space to differently prepare humanists to take over roles that they historically filled in larger numbers.  

Associate Professor of Music Sara Bakker and Professor of Art and Design Darrin Brooks are the other faculty members representing USU in this year’s fellowship cohort comprised of three faculty each from Weber State University, Salt Lake Community College, and University of Utah.

Fellows learn about contemporary issues that face higher education through reading and discussion; attending lectures from leaders, scholars, and policymakers in the field of DEI initiatives in higher education; engaging in team-building exercises; and attending administrative and Utah System of Higher Education board meetings.

Michaelann says, “Participating in the Fellowship has been eye-opening as we’ve learned more about the issues and constraints facing Utah’s higher education institutions and some of the ideas that administrators are considering to increase access and completion for students. In addition to learning leadership tools, it has been particularly invaluable to connect with faculty from USU and other institutions throughout the state who are committed to making their institutions more equitable and inclusive. This has been an incredibly rewarding experience, and I hope to use the tools I’ve gained from it to make USU more equitable and inclusive.”

USU’s participation in the Presidential Leadership Fellowship program is one of Dr. Cockett’s Presidential Initiatives.