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School of Education appoints executive director of diversity and equity initiatives

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

LAWRENCE – Dean Rick Ginsberg has announced the appointment of Ngondi Kamatuka, director of the Center for Educational Opportunity Programs, as the new executive director of diversity and equity initiatives beginning Jan. 1 for the University of Kansas School of Education.

In this newly created position, Kamatuka will play a major role in directing and overseeing the school’s diversity-focused agenda for the next two years while continuing his responsibilities as director of the KU Center for Educational Opportunity Programs. The new position will involve working with faculty, staff and students; assisting with recruitment and retention efforts; serving on the multicultural committee; meeting with the Administrative Council, overseeing diversity agenda efforts and updates; as well as serving on the Dean’s Team.

“We have a number of very talented faculty and staff in the school whose research and professional focus is on diversity,” Ginsberg said. “Although we are not in a position to conduct a full search for an associate dean position, given the importance of the work and its centrality to our mission, Kamatuka will provide the necessary leadership to move the agenda forward.”

Kamatuka is a nationally and internationally recognized leader for his equity and diversity work. He was chairman of the Board of Directors for the Council for Opportunity in Education, and over his nearly 30-year career at KU has led approximately $60,000,000 in TRIO and other research and training projects. He has advised and consulted with individuals and groups across the U.S. and abroad. He received his doctorate in higher education administration at KU in 1987.

The appointment is part-time for two years, after which the school’s administrative council will evaluate the role and potentially conduct a full search for a tenure-track faculty member to serve as associate dean. 

“Our expectation is that the university’s budget constraints will ease by then making a search viable for us,” Ginsberg said. “Until that time, we are lucky to have a person of Kamatuka’s credentials and experience to help lead our diversity efforts for the next two years.”

The KU School of Education is a nationally ranked school, preparing educators and health/sport/exercise professionals as leaders.

10th among public universities for its master’s and doctoral programs
—U.S. News & World Report
#1 public program in nation for special education
—U.S. News & World Report
Assists public schools and other partners in all 105 Kansas counties
$938,377 in scholarship funds awarded to 420+ students
Research expenditures of $36,804,773 for 2011-12
Research from KU’s largest grant, the $24.5 million SWIFT project, assists educators, children, and families across the United States
The award-winning special education faculty published 140 refereed articles, 11 books, and 60 chapters in 2015-16
Students with intellectual disabilities are participating in KU undergraduate programs through a grant-funded KU special education program
Researchers on a $3.5 million grant are collecting data on an innovative reading program designed to teach reading to students with the most significant disabilities in seven Kansas school districts
One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
44 nationally ranked graduate programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.
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