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Each college nominates a faculty representative to serve on this council. They are then invited by the Provost to join CREW.

CREW Representatives:

Faculty Associate to the Provost for Women Faculty and Chair - Betsy Dell

Meet Professor Betsy Dell

Home Department: Manufacturing & Mechanical Engineering Technology

Interests (Teaching/Research):  Polymer Science & Engineering, Bioplastic blends, Materials Characterization; Gender in STEM Education

Years @ RIT: 10 (2005)

Favorite place(s) on campus: Eating outside at Global Village in the warm weather

Mentorship areas: inclusive environments in the classroom, using technology in the classroom, getting started in funded research.

1. Proud Professional Moment: Receiving awards for my work related to gender diversity at RIT: the Edwina Award for Excellence in Gender Diversity and Inclusiveness in 2012 and the Isaac L. Jordan Sr. Faculty Pluralism Award (2015).

2. Trials and Foils: When I started in a tenure track position in 2006, I was told by my chair that completing one conference paper per year would be adequate for achieving tenure.  Expectations changed dramatically over the next several years and I had to transition from being primarily a teacher to a teacher-scholar.  I was fortunate to have a great group of colleagues who formed a peer mentoring team (UFAST) that helped me successfully maneuver to a new level of expectations.

3. Words of Wisdom: You are the master of your career.  Don’t expect anyone else to make things happen for you. Get started on your tenure package right away.  The sooner you start, the easier it will be ask colleagues to review their packages for your mid-tenure review, ask someone to look yours over and provide constructive feedback.

4. Future Aspirations: The percentage of women students in my department is around 10%.  I would like to see that grow-perhaps double before I finish my career.  To learn ASL!

Office of Diversity & Inclusion - Keith Jenkins

Meet Keith Jenkins

Home Department: Office of Diversity & Inclusion

Joined RIT: 1992

Since joining the Department of Communication at RIT in 1992, Professor  Jenkins, in addition to his current role as Vice President & Associate Provost for Diversity & Inclusion, has also served as RIT Faculty-in-Residence (1993 – 1995), RIT’s first Assistant Provost for Diversity (1999 – 2002),  Director of Undergraduate Degree Programs in the School of Communication (2011 – 2016), and Interim Vice President and Associate Provost, Divison for Diversity & Inclusion (2016 - 2017).

Professor Jenkins is the recipient of many awards. Among the RIT awards are the 2010 Eisenhart Award for Outstanding Teaching, the 2005 Isaac L. Jordan Pluralism Award, the 2004 RIT Diversity Trailblazer Award, the 1993-94 Provost’s Excellence in Teaching Award, the 1996 and 1997 Higher Education Opportunity Program “Community Professor” awards which recognize a professor who has made a difference in the lives of HEOP students at RIT, and NTID’s (National Technical Institute for the Deaf) 1995 Pluralism Award.

Professor Jenkins’ scholarly publications and presentations center around studies in intercultural communication, political and visual rhetoric, and the rhetoric of gospel song. Most recently, the focus of his research has been on pragmatism and the rhetoric of inclusion in Barack Obama’s 2008 Presidential campaign.

Office of Faculty Recruitment - Renee Baker

Meet Renee Baker

Home Department: ADVANCE, PE

Joined RIT: 2008

Renee Baker, senior personnel for AdvanceRIT, has been the executive director of faculty recruitment and retention at RIT since 2008. In this role she is responsible for talent acquisition of executive level administrators in the absence of search firms and of all faculty within the Academic Affairs Division and for broader participation through recruitment and retention of African American, Latino American and Native American (AALANA), and women faculty. Previously Ms. Baker held the position of manager of faculty recruitment at RIT, and prior to RIT she served as the human resources director for the city of Rochester (1994-2001), the director of personnel and labor relations for the city of Syracuse (1986-1994), and served in the Affirmative Action/Diversity Office at SUNY Brockport (1981-1986).

Ms. Baker holds an M.S. in counseling education from Brockport State University, an M.A. in public administration from Syracuse University, a B.S. in psychology from Brockport State University, and has completed the management development program at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Her professional affiliations include AALANA Faculty Mentoring Council; advisory board for Center for Women and Gender; diversity member of Women in Engineering Programs and Advocates Network, National Association of Diversity Officers in Higher Education; and National Association of Minority Engineering Program Administrators.

ADVANCE Grant Representative - Margaret Bailey

Meet Dr. Margaret Bailey

Home Department: ADVANCE, PE

Joined RIT: 2003

Within her college, Dr. Bailey teaches thermodynamics related courses, and serves as a mentor and advisor to undergraduate and graduate mechanical engineering students who are involved in her research. She has been actively involved in curricular development and assessment activities ranging from individual courses to college and institute wide programs.  Dr. Bailey and her students conduct research in Thermodynamic analyses of complex, energy intensive systems.  Professor Bailey further explores the area of Thermodynamics as co-author on a major engineering textbook, Fundamentals of Engineering Thermodynamics, currently in its eighth edition with Drs. Moran, Shapiro, and Boettner, used worldwide in over 250 institutions.


College of Applied Science and Technology - Maureen Valentine

Meet Professor Maureen Valentine, PE

Home Department: Civil Engineering Technology, Environmental Management and Safety, CAST

Interests (Teaching/Research): Teaching: geotechnical engineering, Research: Gender and Equality for students and faculty in STEM

Years @ RIT: 22 years

Favorite place(s) on campus: McGowan Commons in ENT building and Henry’s Restaurant

Mentorship areas: Teaching, policy interpretation, preparing for tenure/promotion, work-life

1. Proud Professional Moment: I was incredibly honored to be chosen as the 2013 Engineer of the Year by the Rochester Engineering Society.  This award is chosen by a committee of engineers from the Rochester community, acknowledging the value of the work we do as educators, developing young engineers, creating a diverse group of engineers.  Peer recognition is the most valued recognition I could receive.   

2. Trials and Foils: When I began my career at RIT I was not required to have a PhD or a research agenda.  As the focus of the work here has changed I was challenged to learn and grow.  I was given an opportunity to begin a PhD program in Education, focused on the Curriculum, Instruction and the Science of Learning, which I continue to pursue.   

3. Words of Wisdom: Learn to say yes wisely….You can’t say yes to every opportunity that is presented, so learn to step back and assess whether you will learn from what you are being asked to do, whether you will enjoy it.

4. Future Aspirations: I would like to retire from RIT knowing that it is a safe and welcoming environment for all who wish to study here.

College of Health Sciences & Technology - Liz Kmiecinski

Meet Elizabeth (Liz) Kmiecinski, RDN, MS

Home Department: Wegmans School of Health & Nutrition, CHST

Interests (Teaching/Research): Have taught a variety of food, nutrition, leadership, senior capstone courses, currently enrolled in PhD program at University of Buffalo

Years started at RIT: 1988

Favorite place(s) on campus: SLC

Mentorship areas:

  1. Proud Professional Moment: Outstanding Dietetic Educator (2010), Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics – alumni driven national award.
  2. Words of Wisdom: My objectives as a faculty member have always been as follows: 1. Service the student; 2. Be a good steward of the Nutrition Management program (one of RIT’s oldest, quality programs); 3. Family first
  3. Future Aspirations: Become a better researcher
College of Imaging Arts and Sciences - Jenifer Poggi

Meet Jenifer Poggi

Home Department: Assistant Professor - School of Photographic Arts and Sciences

Interests (Teaching/Research):
- Photojournalism

Jenn Poggi is an assistant professor teaching classes related to photojournalism and narrative development in the School of Photographic Arts and Sciences. She joined RIT following four years at the White House, where she served as a picture editor and deputy director of the Photo Office under President Barack Obama. Jenn began her career as a photo assistant with the Associated Press in New York and later worked as a picture editor covering national, international, and sports news. She joined U.S. News & World Report where she worked as a picture editor handling national and political news in the Nation section before serving as deputy director of photography at the magazine. Jenn was awarded a John S. and James L. Knight Fellowship at Ohio University's School of Visual Communication where she taught picture editing while completing her master’s degree in multimedia and newsroom graphics management.

College of Science - Manuela Campanelli

Meet Dr. Manuela Campanelli

Home Department: School of Mathematical Sciences, Astrophysical Sciences and Technology, Center for Computational Relativity and Gravitation, COS

Interests (Research): My research focuses on the study of the most extreme conditions of gravity and matter there is in the universe that is close to merging black holes. These mergers are so powerful that they can release an energy equivalent to a billion years' worth of an entire galaxy's starlight in just few minutes. Interests (Teaching): I truly enjoy bringing my research in the classroom environment, and working very closely with my PhD students.

Years @ RIT: Since 2007

Favorite place(s) on campus: The Center for Computational Relativity and Gravitation

1. Proud Professional Moment: What is the most significant/proudest accomplishment in your career?

I am proud to have produced key revolutionary advances that allowed astrophysicists

worldwide to simulate merging black holes in supercomputers. I also discovered that supermassive black holes can be ejected from most galaxies at very high speeds. I was one of the very few women scientists that received a fellowship of the American Physical Society for my research. I also received the Trustee Research Award for involving students in my research. One of my papers is one of the General Relativity’s Centennial landmark papers, enjoying the company of Albert Einstein and Steven Hawking papers!

2. Trials and Foils:  What is the one challenge you had @ RIT and how did you overcome it?

There are always challenges in one’s career. The biggest of all challenges was to create a new research center at RIT, the Center for Computational Relativity and Gravitation, and to bring it to international success. Passion, drive, persistence and professional integrity were essential to my success.

3. Words of Wisdom: What is the one thing you know now, that you wish you knew when you arrived first year

Have a dream. Never give it up.

4. Future Aspirations: What you would like to accomplish in the next 10-15 years?

Black holes are some of the most powerful and mysterious objects in the universe. Much works is still left for me to try to unveil some of their most hidden secrets.

Another major goal of mine in the next 10-15 years is to work to improve the research culture and scholarship of all RIT faculty and students. I believe that RIT is uniquely positioned to become a successful modern research university in the future. Outside RIT, I am actively engaged to improve the protection and care of animals, helping animal right organizations, shelters and fighting animal cruelty. I am also advocating for a more sustainable future for our planet.

College of Liberal Arts - Katie Terezakis

Meet Dr. Katie Terezakiskatie terezakis


Home Department: Philosophy (CLA)

Interests (Teaching/Research): German Idealism, Critical Theory, and Aesthetics. At RIT I also teach a range of classes from seminars in Ancient Greek Philosophy to Existentialism to Nineteenth Century Philosophy and Contemporary Philosophy. 

Year started at RIT: Fall 2004-5.

Favorite place(s) on campus: The outer loop walk/run around campus.

Mentorship areas: Teaching and research/teaching/service balance.

1. Proud Professional Moments: Publishing a collection of essays (2009) on the work of my mentor, the philosopher Agnes Heller, and soon after, bringing out a new edition (and writing the afterword to), the early essays of her mentor, the philosopher George Lukacs (2010).

2. Trials and Foils: In 2014, my dean appointed me to head a taskforce on parental leave. Our group did wide-ranging research quickly and efficiently. Within six weeks, we presented to the dean and college a set of progressive, feasible recommendations, on which further “family leave” policies (such as those related to elder care) could be based. All of our recommendations were grounded on the current practices of selected peer- or benchmark universities. Ultimately, the College of Liberal Arts (unanimously) adopted a modified version of our core proposal and has since established several of our satellite suggestions. However, at about the same time that we were initiating our research in the CLA, the university began considering an update to the general RIT policy, when then consisted of nothing more than the federally mandated Family Medical Leave Act of 1993, supplemented by “disability” insurance covering six-weeks of full-time pay for faculty. Although there seemed to universal agreement that the then-current policy had disadvantaged women, especially junior faculty, and clear evidence that it was applied differently in different departments and colleges—resulting in significant inequity between faculty—the administration seemed to find the creation of a better policy challenging. Once the updated university policy was finally announced, we learned that it did represent an improvement in the number of weeks officially covered under “disability,” but that it ignored the more fair and progressive practices which were, by then, already working well in our college. In part because the number of weeks of paid leave is not consistent with the number of weeks in a semester, faculty across the colleges are now experiencing the same discrepancies that characterized faculty life under our initial policy-as-FMLA restatement. I have now informally documented a number of cases, over only a year, of completely different applications of the policy to different women. In the worst of these, tenure-track faculty and those coming up for tenure during a pregnancy have judged it better not to contest the leave weeks of which they are being deprived, or to bring differences between their cases and others to wider attention. In sum then, the university has so far missed an opportunity to embrace the policy adopted by the CLA, which itself is based on the best practices of our benchmark institutions. I would like to see the amendment of the family leave policy become a focal point for the new administration we anticipate welcoming to RIT next year.  

3. Words of Wisdom: Protect the time and the passion for your own research and writing. If you are depleted, spend less time on committees and other non-essential collegiate activities. Decide on a reasonable amount of time to spend on each of your responsibilities each day or week; time yourself with each of them; record and regularly reassess your times; and continue to stick to your timed schedule as much as possible.  

4. Future Aspirations: In the immediate future, I’d likely to finish my current book, which is based on conclusions I began drawing in a 2007 monograph and have been developing since then.


Golisano College of Computing and Information Sciences - Sumita Mishra

Meet Dr. Sumita Mishrasumatra mishra

Home Department: GCCIS

Interests (Teaching/Research): Applied Cryptography, Privacy, Critical Infrastructure Protection, Cybersecurity Pedagogy
Years @ RIT: Since 2007
Favorite place(s) on campus: Midnight Oil, Global Village 

Mentorship areas: Teaching, Student advisement, Balance between research/teaching/service

1.    Proud Professional Moment: GCCIS Outstanding Educator Award (2013), First NSF grant (2013)

2.    Trials and Foils: When I took on administrative responsibilities as the graduate program director of my department in 2014, I had not gauged the additional workload accurately, and how it would impact my research and other activities. I was spending a lot of time taking care of some of the unexpected challenges that came with my new role. After the first year, through effective prioritization strategies, I adapted and found ways to balance between my research, teaching and service/administration activities. I thoroughly enjoy advising and mentoring graduate students, an opportunity that came through this role. 

3.    Words of Wisdom: Prioritize, prioritize, prioritize. No matter how busy it gets, take time out for yourself. Spend some time reflecting on your accomplishments.

4.    Future Aspirations: Be a part of RIT’s future growth through roles and responsibilities where I can contribute in a meaningful way. 

Kate Gleason College of Engineering - Dhireesha Kudithipudi

Meet Dr. Kudithipudi

Home Department: Computer Engineering

Interests (Teaching/Research): Brain-inspired Computing, Energy Efficient computing, Unconventional-computing paradigms

Years @ RIT: 2007

Favorite place(s) on campus:  Javas and Nanocomputing research lab

Mentorship areas: Research/Teaching Balance

1. Proud Professional Moment: What is the most significant/proudest accomplishment in your career?

While there are a few proud moments during the course of my career, including the first time I received a research grant to receiving a standing ovation at my PhD graduation (I was the first student to obtain PhD from the college). The one I am most proud of is when my professional role model (aka research rock star) personally complimented on my groups research work and that he follows our work.

2. Trials and Foils: What is the one challenge you had @ RIT and how did you overcome it?

Advancing my research primarily with BS/MS students during early career days was quite challenging. It took a while to understand the learning culture of the students and build a robust research group with them. I fostered a strong sense of belonging in my lab through different group activities, travel opportunities to lead conferences, and weekly technical discussions. Today I am so proud of their contributions. Since then we have a few PhD students join our group, but BS/MS students are still integral to our research.

3. Words of Wisdom: What is the one thing you know now, that you wish you knew when you arrived first year?

Take a long-term view of your career, beyond tenure.  It is also very important to (re)prioritize your goals for every 5-year time window.

4. Future Aspirations: What you would like to accomplish in the next 10-15 years?

I would like to establish a premier research center at RIT and also engage in the transformation of our institution through leadership roles.

National Technical Institute for the Deaf - Bonnie Jacob

Meet Assistant Professor Bonnie Jacoblaura jacobs

Home Department: NTID Science and Mathematics

Interests (Teaching/Research): I teach and tutor a variety of mathematics courses.  My research focuses mostly on the intersection of graph theory and linear algebra, including zero forcing and minimum rank problems.  

Year started at RIT: 2010

Favorite place(s) on campus: The nature trails, especially in fall, and the Tojo Memorial Garden.

Mentorship areas: Preparing for third-year review, early career work-life balance

1. Proud Professional Moment: Publishing papers with students always makes me proud. Also, winning the 2017 NTID Pre-tenure Scholarship Award recently was very exciting for me. 

2. Trials and Foils: In general, balance of the different aspects of life is a challenge. First and foremost is learning how to balance family and work.  Achieving a healthy balance in the different aspects of my job (research, teaching, and communication) is an ongoing struggle.  A silver lining is knowing that the struggle to balance only exists because of how much I value all of these facets of life and career. 

3. Words of Wisdom: Learn to balance independence and collaboration.  Independence is critical, but so is knowing when to reach out to others.  

4. Future Aspirations: I plan to continue to involve students who are deaf or hard-of-hearing in mathematical research.  I hope to someday expand this endeavor internationally.  

Saunders College of Business - Rong Yang

Meet Rong Yang

Home Department: Accounting and Finance

Interests (Teaching/Research): Corporate Financial Reporting, Corporate Governance, Internal Control, and Audit Quality

Year Started at RIT: 2012

Favorite place(s) on campus: University Arts Center

Mentorship areas: Teaching and research balance, preparing for tenure/promotion

1. Proud Professional Moment:  I have a few proud moments in my professional life. One of them is to hear back from students years after graduating and know they are doing well professionally.

2. Trials and Foils: Advancing my research while maintaining life-work balance.

3. Words of Wisdom: Life is all about attitude.

4. Future Aspirations:   I would like to study the social media impact on corporate financial reporting strategy.

Golisano Institute for Sustainability - Callie Babbitt

Meet Callie W. Babbit

Home Department: Sustainability

Interests (Teaching/Research): I study and teach on the environmental impacts of emerging and evolving technologies, including consumer electronics, lithium-ion batteries, nanotechnology, and food waste solutions. My research group develops novel methods for analyzing sustainability risks and creating proactive solutions to ensure that these technologies can reach their full potential for improving quality of life without creating unintended consequences to environmental systems.

Year Started at RIT: 2009

Favorite place(s) on campus: The Eco-Design Lab in Sustainability Hall; walking down the Quarter Mile in late spring

Mentorship areas: Grant writing; working with the National Science Foundation; interdisciplinary research; graduate advising; science communication

1. Proud Professional Moment: Receiving the NSF CAREER Award in 2013; Serving as  a U.S. Delegate to the 2017 G7 Environmental Ministers Meeting; Mentoring and graduating multiple female Ph.D. grads and seeing them go on to successful careers

2. Trials and Foils: Knowing when to speak up and when to listen; Learning how to effectively advise graduate students; Struggling to prioritize important goals over daily calamities and distractions

3. Words of Wisdom: Find good collaborators, celebrate successes small and large; don’t skimp on sleep; be a lifelong learner; get to know and thank the many staff at RIT who keep the university running.

4. Future Aspirations:  Continue to find exciting research problems to study over the course of my career; Travel globally to study food waste systems and solutions around the world.

School of Individualized Study - Makini Beck

Meet Makini Beck

Home Department: School of Individualized Study

Interests (Teaching/Research): Narrative Inquiry, teaching diverse learners, mentoring women of color in academia, spirituality as a pedagogical practice

Year Started at RIT: 2013

Favorite place(s) on campus: The School of Individualized Study is a warm and welcoming space with amazing people who are passionate about helping students see the value and purpose of their lives through academic engagement.

Mentorship areas: Navigating the RIT academic landscape

1. Proud Professional Moment: The moment I walked across the stage as a PhD in my academic regalia, that I call my second wedding dress. That day, I looked at the dome that sat atop of the University of Rochester library and I said to it – “I slayed the beast”!    

2. Trials and Foils: I learned to fail a lot. Some will even say to fail more often.  Failure must be in the veins of champions. It teaches you strength and humility, and shows you what you are made of.  

3. Words of Wisdom:

“Never, never, never give up!” ~Winston Churchill  

“I tell my students, ‘when you get these jobs that you have been so brilliantly trained for, just remember that your real job is that if you are free, you need to free somebody else. If you have some power, then your job is to empower somebody else’.” ~Toni Morrison

4. Future Aspirations:  Tenured faculty, and to one day own my own school.

Women in Science - Laura Munzo

Meet Laura Munzo

Home Department: School of Mathematical Sciences