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UCLA Magazine Spring 2005
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Spring 2005
The Quest

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Illustration of Diversity Rosina Becerra heads up the effort to expand the diversity of UCLA's faculty

Photography by Reed Hutchinson
Illustration by Noah Woods

As associate vice chancellor in charge of UCLA’s Office of Faculty Diversity, Rosina Becerra knows what an uphill struggle it can be to recruit, hire and retain a faculty that reflects a broader spectrum of race, ethnicity and gender than many students who attended school 10, 20 or more years ago might remember.

White males still dominate faculties throughout the country — including at UCLA. And while there has been a slight uptick here toward the inclusion of more women and minorities, such a sea change in the academic culture takes time to achieve. Recently, Becerra’s office published a 205-page monograph that shows where women and minorities stand on the academic career ladder in every department of the university, and where they are underrepresented compared to their availability in the job market. (The monograph may be viewed online at www.faculty.diversity.ucla.edu.)

Chancellor Albert Carnesale has made his commitment to faculty diversity clear, calling it “one of my highest priorities.” In a letter to Becerra that he wrote to announce he was allocating additional full-time faculty positions for this year and next to assist her efforts, he said, “I am confident that, with your guidance, these [positions] will be utilized to the fullest extent possible in support of our shared goal of enhancing faculty diversity on the UCLA campus.”

UCLA Magazine Associate Editor Cynthia Lee talked with Becerra about her mission.

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