Dr. Mitchell brings an extensive variety of life experiences to the position of Director of Engineering Diversity at the Rochester Institute of Technology. She received her Bachelors (Organizational Management) from Roberts Wesleyan College, Masters (Human Resource Development) degree from Rochester Institute of Technology and eventually earned her Ed.D. in Educational Leadership/Curriculum & Instruction from the University of Phoenix. She has been in the Higher Ed field for 9 years between the University of Rochester and Rochester Institute of Technology in positions such as an HR Liaison/Principal Assistant to Center Administrator and Administrative and Financial Services Coordinator in Mechanical Engineering at Rochester Institute of Technology. Venessa is one of the founding members of Women of Color Honor and Ambition (WOCHA) and is currently on the Women of WOCHA Council, has been Key Captain, RIT United Way Campaign, ALAANA Faculty and Staff Association Treasurer.
Venessa chairs RIT’s Pillars of Hope Team in collaboration with the City of Rochester. A Pillar Team “adopts” a school and implements activities for the purposes of instilling and/or increasing learning in children; shares personal journeys in the pursuit of education/careers; sharing stories of overcoming challenges; encouraging students to know that they have the power and strength of character to change, redirect, and take charge of their lives in ways that lead them to achieving their personal goals and dreams.
In the Rochester Community Venessa has graduated from United Way AALDP (African American Leadership Development Program) and is a member of the AALDP recruitment and selection committee. She volunteers for Empire Justice (formally with United Way) CASH program as a tax preparer & quality reviewer
Venessa has received the Citibank Student Loan Corporation Service Excellence Awards and been nominated for gold awards and RIT Presidential Award for Outstanding Staff.