UC Davis Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor Mary Croughan has named Kristin H. Lagattuta to the post of faculty advisor to the provost on closing student opportunity gaps.
Lagattuta is a professor in the Department of Psychology and the UC Davis Center for Mind and Brain. She is a developmental psychologist with expertise in cognition and emotion. She was a recipient of an Academic Senate Distinguished Teaching Award for Undergraduate Teaching in 2015.
She recently stepped down from her two-year position as chair of the Davis Division of the Academic Senate. “I am very excited about taking on this new role,” Lagattuta said. “As a professor and as Academic Senate chair, I have long been involved in our collective efforts to improve education for our undergraduates. This new step will allow me to build upon that experience and more effectively promote equitable opportunities for learning and success across our colleges and schools.”
As faculty advisor, Lagattuta will — in collaboration with stakeholders from across the UC Davis community — play a leading role in developing comprehensive strategies aimed at achieving equitable outcomes in student educational opportunities and success, building inclusive excellence, and furthering the role of UC Davis as an engine for social mobility.
Among her activities, she will:
- Meet with faculty, staff, the Academic Senate and the Academic Federation to learn what is working to promote equitable student opportunities and success and where the university needs further growth and more resources.
- Meet with diverse student groups and potentially recent alumni to garner their perspectives and recommendations.
- Review academic research for insights on best practices.
- Facilitate the collaborative development of a comprehensive strategic plan for building more equitable opportunities for academic success. The process — which will involve Undergraduate Education; Student Affairs; Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion; deans and associate deans; Academic Senate; Academic Federation; ASUCD; and others — will encourage the consideration of innovative ideas for new initiatives, new pedagogical and mentoring practices, and the creative adaptation of existing programs. It will also determine effective metrics to create accountability and monitor progress in the proposed efforts.
“It is the university’s great good fortune that Kristin has agreed to serve in this important faculty advisor position,” Croughan said. “Creating equitable educational opportunities and outcomes for our students is absolutely central to our university’s public-service mission, and I know no one better equipped to guide this effort than she.”
Lagattuta formally assumed her new role on Sept. 1.