Keith Jenkins Headshot

Keith Jenkins

Vice President and Associate Provost for Diversity and Inclusion

Diversity and Inclusion Leadership
Diversity and Inclusion

Office Location
Office Mailing Address
George Eastman Building 12 Lomb Memorial Drive Rochester NY

Keith Jenkins

Vice President and Associate Provost for Diversity and Inclusion

Diversity and Inclusion Leadership
Diversity and Inclusion


BA, University of Arkansas; MA, Ph.D., Florida State University


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, Division 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.


Select Scholarship

Invited Article/Publication
Wick, David P. and Keith B. Jenkins. "Shaping an Institutional Narrative Around Diversity." INSIGHT Into Diversity. (2018). Print.
Published Article
Jenkins, Keith B., and Grant Cos. “A Time for Change and a Candidate’s Voice: Pragmatism and the Rhetoric of Inclusion in Barack Obama’s 2008 Presidential Campaign.” American Behavioral Scientist, 54.3 (2010): 184-202. Print.

Currently Teaching

3 Credits
Intercultural communication provides an examination of the role of culture in face-to-face interaction. Students may find a basic background in communication, anthropology, or psychology useful.
3 Credits
Rhetoric of Race Relations examines the history of the struggle for freedom and equality for blacks in American society. This course traces the history and rhetoric of key spokespersons from the pre-Civil War period to the 20th century as evidenced in texts of selected public speeches and reactions to them.

In the News

  • August 19, 2022

    RIT President Munson speaking at podium with a power point projection in the background.

    President Munson calls on RIT community to reinvigorate the campus this academic year

    RIT President David Munson welcomed the community for the start of a new academic year with a call to re-energize the campus’s atmosphere to its pre-pandemic level. During his annual President’s Address in Ingle Auditorium this morning, Munson encouraged all RIT faculty, staff, and students to make a new academic year resolution to spend more time face-to-face with one another.

  • December 3, 2021

    man in a corn field looking at a stalk.

    Growing faculty diversity

    RIT has modernized its approach to recruiting faculty members to improve representation. Assistant Professor Eli Borrego, pictured above, is an expert in the genetics and biochemistry of plant-microbe and plant-insect communication and ecology, and he was introduced to RIT through the Future Faculty Career Exploration Program.