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Faculty Diversity & Inclusion

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Oceanography and Physics Building

Supporting the Recruitment, Retention and Development of Diverse Faculty


About the Committee

The College of Sciences Diversity Committee is dedicated to promoting diversity and equity among all members of the college. In addition to developing a mentorship plan and procedures for conducting diverse faculty searches, the committee offers training workshops on important topics including the recruitment and retention of diverse faculty. The committee consists of a chair and representatives from each department.




COS Diversity Committee Mission Statement

The mission of the College of Sciences Diversity Committee is to promote equity and cultivate an atmosphere of inclusion and mutual respect for all members of the college. We recognize that such an atmosphere is not an end-state but rather an ongoing process to be embodied and enacted by all faculty. The committee's mission is achieved through valuing our differences and providing resources and training to encourage and enhance our diversity. These efforts foster a cohesive and creative college which depends on the unique contributions of every member.

Committee Chair


Deborah Waller

    ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR
    302B MILLS GODWIN BLDG
  • NORFOLK, VA 23529
  • 757-683-3601
  • dwaller@odu.edu

Alexander Bochdansky

    Professor
    419 OCEANOGRAPHY&PHYSICS BLDG
  • NORFOLK, VA 23529
  • 757-683-4933
  • abochdan@odu.edu

Raul Briceno

    Assistant Professor
    325 OCEANOGRAPHY & PHYSICS BLDG
  • NORFOLK, VA 23529
  • 757-683-5813
  • rbriceno@odu.edu

Norou Diawara

Jing He

    PROFESSOR
    3319 ENGR & COMP SCI BLDG
  • NORFOLK, VA 23529
  • 757-683-7716
  • jhe@odu.edu

Alvin Holder

    PROFESSOR
    CHEMISTRY BUILDING 4501 ELKHORN AVE
  • NORFOLK, VA 23529
  • 757-683-7102
  • aholder@odu.edu

Alan Meca Ph.D. (Developmental Psychology)

    134 A MILLS GODWIN BLDG
  • NORFOLK, VA 23529
  • 757-683-4450
  • ameca@odu.edu

Janet Moloney

    SENIOR LECTURER
    CHEMISTRY BUILDING 4501 ELKHORN AVE
  • NORFOLK, VA 23529
  • 757-683-4409
  • jmoloney@odu.edu

Emilia Oleszak

    ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR
    302H MILLS GODWIN BLDG
  • NORFOLK, VA 23529
  • 757-683-3763
  • eoleszak@odu.edu

The COS Diversity Committee performs the following functions for the college:

  1. In general, the committee addresses issues that impact diversity within the college. These issues have included faculty recruitment and retention, childcare, and mentorship.

  2. The committee develops workshops for faculty in areas that affect diversity. One workshop involved faculty mentorship of diverse students. An upcoming workshop will address methods for conducting a diverse job search.

  3. Members of the committee meet with all new job candidates for faculty positions in the college. In these meetings, the committee member informs the job candidate about diversity initiatives at ODU and ways the candidate can become involved. A committee member meets with a job candidate who is from a different department. This ensures that the job candidate can speak candidly to the committee member.

  4. The committee offers guidelines for an effective job search to encourage diversity among ODU faculty.

  5. The committee created guidelines for Diversity Advocates on search committees. The Diversity Advocate may be any member of the faculty who is interested in promoting diversity at ODU. Steps required to conduct a diverse job search are provided to search committees, and the Diversity Advocate ensures that all the actions are completed.

John R. Broderick Diversity Champion Award

We are extremely proud of our College of Sciences faculty members who have won the John R. Broderick Diversity Champion Award.

Past recipients include:

  • Dr. Brian Porter, Associate Dean of the Graduate School and Professor of Psychology, 2017-2018
  • Dr. Debra Major, Professor of psychology and Eminent Scholar, 2017
  • Dr. Lesley Greene, Graduate Program Director, Biomedical Sciences PhD Program and Associate Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry, 2016-2017
  • Dr. Chris Platsoucas, Professor of Biological Sciences, 2013


College of Sciences Topics-Based Resource Mentorship 2020-2021

The College of Sciences is committed to supporting each member of the faculty to be successful in all aspects of their work. Faculty at all ranks, both tenure-track and non-tenure-track, benefit from high quality mentoring. Often one needs several mentors to cover different aspects of faculty responsibilities. The goal of this document is to present guidelines for mentoring in the college including some minimum standards. The COS Diversity Committee has initiated a two-tier system as follows: 1) Every new faculty hire will be assigned at least one mentor, and 2) The College of Sciences will offer topics-based resource mentorship for specific situations that new faculty may encounter.

1) Every new faculty hire is assigned at least one mentor

There will be a mentorship program in each department in which the chair

formally assigns at least one mentor to each new full-time faculty member, including lecturers. The assignment should be made after consulting with the mentee and considering any preferences he/she may have. The mentee will have one mentor from within the department and may have an additional mentor from inside or outside the department as appropriate. Chairs will discuss possible outside mentors with the mentee and make arrangements with the appropriate chair and mentor if one is selected. Mentors should normally hold academic rank above the mentee and have been at ODU for at least three years.

Mentors and mentees should meet at least three times per semester. The mentor should help the mentee understand the expectations in the department, college and university and help them navigate the academic landscape.

At a minimum, the Department Chair will enquire informally about the progress of the mentorship arrangement at the midpoint and end of the first semester. Members of the COS Diversity Committee will also check occasionally to make sure that mentors and mentees in their departments are satisfied with the relationship. The Dean will follow up with the chairs to review the effectiveness of the mentoring program at least once per year. If either the mentor or mentee is not satisfied with the way the relationship is developing, either one can request a reassignment from the chair.

Serving as a mentor to one's colleagues is a normal part of academic life and expected of all senior faculty. Given the importance of mentoring to the success of junior colleagues and ultimately to the department, the chair should include mentoring activity in the annual evaluation. The faculty information sheet should be modified to include mentoring. If available, department or college funds will pay for one mentoring lunch per semester in the first two years of a new faculty member's time at ODU. This can be a group event for all mentors and mentees in the college.

2) The College of Sciences offers topics-based resources for specific situations that new faculty may encounter

One or more faculty within the college will agree to represent a specific topic of concern to new faculty. The faculty representatives along with their respective topics will be posted on a COS webpage devoted to mentoring. Mentees will contact the representatives for assistance with a specific problem. The faculty representative may either meet with the mentee to resolve the issue, or the representative may direct the mentee to a faculty member in the mentee's own department or the college who has expertise with that issue and agrees to help the mentee. The COS Diversity Committee will provide information on each topic (websites, papers, videos, list of appropriate ODU resources) to the representatives as a resource bank. The following topics will be offered for mentorship opportunities.

  • Managing hostility and disruption
  • Offering emotional support to students
  • Teaching while female
  • Teaching as a person of color
  • Teaching as international faculty
  • How to engage in outreach activities
  • Publishing research papers/books
  • Grant-writing
  • How to mentor undergraduate students
  • How to mentor graduate students
  • Tenure and promotion
  • Professional development
  • LGBTQ faculty issues
  • Time management
  • Parenting as a Faculty Member

Topics and Mentors

COS faculty who wish to discuss one or more of these topics with a mentor, please contact one of the mentors listed next to the topic. Any faculty who wish to serve as a mentor in this program should email Deborah Waller at dwaller@odu.edu.

Managing hostility and disruption James Paulson, Shannon Wells
Offering emotional support to students Cassie Glenn, Kristin Heron, Lytton Musselman, James Paulson, Christina Steel, Shannon Wells
Teaching while female Cassie Glenn, Deborah Waller, Shannon Wells
Teaching as a person of color Alvin Holder, Alan Meca
Teaching as international faculty Alvin Holder, Sebastian Kuhn, Lytton Musselman
How to engage in outreach activities Lisa Horth, Lytton Musselman, Deborah Waller
Publishing research papers/books David Burdige, Cassie Glenn, Alan Meca, James Paulson, Lytton Musselman
Grant-writing Alexander Bochdansky, Cassie Glenn, Kristin Heron
How to mentor undergraduate students Alan Meca, Lytton Musselman, James Paulson
How to mentor graduate students Kristin Heron, Lytton Musselman, James Paulson
Tenure and promotion Sebastian Kuhn (for tenure-track faculty)
Lytton Musselman (for tenure-track faculty)
Shannon Wells (promotion for lecturers)
Professional development Lytton Musselman
LGBTQ faculty issues Lytton Musselman
Time management Deborah Waller
Parenting as a Faculty Member Kristin Heron, James Paulson, Shannon Wells

Topics-Based Resource Faculty Mentors Contact Information

Alexander Bochdansky

    Professor
    419 OCEANOGRAPHY&PHYSICS BLDG
  • NORFOLK, VA 23529
  • 757-683-4933
  • abochdan@odu.edu

David J Burdige

Cassie Glenn Ph.D (Clinical Psychology)

    ASSISTANT PROFESSOR
    134B MILLS GODWIN BLDG
  • NORFOLK, VA 23529
  • 757-683-4458
  • cglenn@odu.edu

Kristin Heron, Ph.D. (Clinical)

    ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR
    250 MILLS GODWIN BLDG
  • NORFOLK, VA 23529
  • 757-683-4439
  • kheron@odu.edu

Alvin Holder

    PROFESSOR
    CHEMISTRY BUILDING 4501 ELKHORN AVE
  • NORFOLK, VA 23529
  • 757-683-7102
  • aholder@odu.edu

Lisa Horth


Sebastian Kuhn

    PROFESSOR & EMINENT SCHOLAR
    2100J PHYSICAL SCIENCE BLDG
  • NORFOLK, VA 23529
  • 757-683-5804
  • skuhn@odu.edu
  • Web Page

Alan Meca Ph.D. (Developmental Psychology)

    134 A MILLS GODWIN BLDG
  • NORFOLK, VA 23529
  • 757-683-4450
  • ameca@odu.edu

Lytton John Musselman

    Mary Payne Hogan Distinguished Professor of Botany & Eminent Scholar
    304 MILLS GODWIN BLDG
  • NORFOLK, VA 23529
  • 757-683-3597
  • lmusselm@odu.edu
  • Web Page

James Paulson Ph.D. (Health Psychology)

    ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR
    244B MILLS GODWIN BLDG
  • NORFOLK, VA 23529
  • 757-683-4222
  • jpaulson@odu.edu

Christina Steel

Deborah Waller

    ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR
    302B MILLS GODWIN BLDG
  • NORFOLK, VA 23529
  • 757-683-3601
  • dwaller@odu.edu

Shannon Wells

    SENIOR LECTURER
    OCEANOGRAPHY&PHYSICS BLDG
  • NORFOLK, VA 23529
  • 757-683-3676
  • swells@odu.edu





Questions or Ideas for the Committee?

Contact our Committee Chair, Deborah Waller.