Oscar Dubón, a professor in the College of Engineering since 2000, began serving as UC Berkeley’s third Vice Chancellor for Equity and Inclusion on July 1.
This appointment builds on his decades of advocacy for underrepresented populations in higher education and STEM fields. Dubón entered the UC system as a 17-year-old freshman at UCLA; he came to Berkeley in 1989 for graduate studies and earned his Ph.D. here in materials science and mineral engineering in 1996.
In his previous role as Associate Dean for Equity and Inclusion in the College of Engineering, Professor Dubón established programs to increase diversity among undergraduate and graduate student populations, supported recruitment efforts for a more diverse faculty, and helped the College enhance a welcoming environment for all members of its community. Professor Dubón established the Center for Access to Engineering Excellence, a hub for student engagement, academic success, and community building. He has worked to integrate groups that have been traditionally underserved or unwelcomed into a broader framework of inclusive learning communities. For his efforts, Professor Dubón received the 2016 Chancellor’s Award for Advancing Institutional Excellence and Equity.
Among the many staff and offices across the campus with whom the Vice Chancellor works is the Office for Graduate Diversity (OGD), which links the Division of Equity and Inclusion to the Graduate Division. Abby Rincón, Assistant Dean for Graduate Diversity, commented, “Oscar’s leadership comes not only from his strategic vision but from lived experience, along with his clear commitment to make UC equitable and inclusive for all community members. As an interesting side story, the OGD actually recruited Oscar to Berkeley’s graduate school when he was an undergraduate at UCLA. We know that diversity outreach is critical to bring brilliant students to Berkeley, where they may become major leaders of our campus!”
In a recent interview with Berkeley News, Professor Dubón summed up his excitement about his new position this way: “Every time I’m able to work with a student to address an issue and know that they’ll be able to move forward in their career or educational aspirations, to me that’s immensely gratifying. When I see that they’re moving forward to a better place or they know that there are other people on this campus that care about them — that is extremely rewarding. To be able to do that on a larger scale is immensely inspirational and immensely humbling. I’m looking forward to being able to roll up my sleeves and serving, because to me, leading means serving.”