Dr. Feion Villodas Selected as one of the Inaugural Provost’s Professors of Equity in Education

Dr. Feion Villodas, Department of Psychology Professor and JDP Faculty Member, was selected as one of five inaugural Provost’s Professors of Equity in Education! Read the full announcement below or visit SDSU’s Professors of Equity website. 



We are delighted to announce that Dr. Cristina Alfaro has been selected as the inaugural Provost Chair of Faculty Diversity and Inclusion at San Diego State University. As Provost Chair, Alfaro will support the development and implementation of diversity and inclusion initiatives, including the implementation of the University Senate resolution to create university and department-level strategic plans for diversity, equity and inclusion. As chair, she will retain her existing assignment and primary role as a professor in the Department of Dual Language and English Learner Education in the College of Education.

dr-alfaro.jpgAlfaro will also be responsible for overseeing the implementation of search committee training for all faculty and executive-administrative searches. She will oversee the University Inclusion Program, which will host trainings on implicit bias, microaggressions, teaching practices for underserved students, and understanding what it means to be a Hispanic Serving Institution. In addition, she will serve as leader of the team of five Provost’s Professors of Equity in Education, who are identified below.

Alfaro is a professor and immediate past chair of the Dual Language and English Learner Education Department in SDSU’s College of Education. During times of restrictive language policies, Alfaro has championed and led the largest bilingual teacher education program in the state of California. She is a nationally and internationally recognized scholar in the field of cultural and linguistic diversity education. She is the recipient of the San Diego County Office of Education Biliteracy Leadership Award, the College of Education Excellence in Teaching Award, the National Outstanding Latina in Higher Education Award and the Gomez-Morin Global Education Award. Her background as a biliteracy teacher, school administrator and department chair have served her well, providing a foundation for creating and implementing educational curriculum with diversity and equity at the core. As a researcher, she has examined and published on the role of ideological and pedagogical practices that situate equity within broader efforts to disrupt the racialization of K-16 Latinx and other minoritized student groups and communities.

We are also pleased to announce the selection of five inaugural Provost’s Professors of Equity in Education. These professors will provide intensive, ongoing professional learning opportunities for SDSU faculty on diversity-related topics. Professional learning will address unconscious and implicit bias, racial/gender microaggressions, teaching practices for underserved students, socio-cultural competency and what it means to be a Hispanic Serving Institution. These professors will also provide support in the implementation of Diversity Strategic Planning. They will retain their existing assignments and primary roles as faculty within their respective departments.


Our inaugural Professors are:

Dr. Yea-Wen Chen, School of Communication: Chen’s research has led her to seek out critical approaches to better understand uneven, if not unequal, communication patterns between, across, or in-between cultural groups. Since then, she has continued to lead and develop research projects and teaching practices that honor voices and experiences on cultural margins inside and outside of U.S. academia. Chen will also serve as a multicultural educator for the campus.

Dr. Thierry Devos, Department of Psychology: Devos’ research interests are primarily in the area of intergroup relations. The goal of his current work is to understand how implicit intergroup biases are embedded in social and cultural contexts. He currently teaches courses on cultural psychology, prejudice and stereotyping, and the psychology of diversity and multiculturalism.

Dr. Daniel L. Reinholz, Department of Mathematics and Statistics:Reinholz’s research focuses on creating tools for educational transformation, to improve equity and mitigate systemic oppression. He is a co-founder of the Access Network, a national network of programs in the United States that aim to increase equity in the physical sciences. His research is situated primarily within three interrelated areas: reflection and disciplinary learning; reducing implicit bias; and systemic transformation.

Dr. Nellie Tran, Department of Counseling & School Psychology: Tran is a community psychologist who works with communities and agencies to create systems-level changes that reduce the impact of subtle forms of discrimination, such as racial microaggressions, on people of color and women. Her research focuses on microaggression prevention and intervention work, especially as they pertain to specific workplace and educational contexts.

Dr. Feion Villodas, Department of Psychology: Villodas’ research focuses on adapting evidence-based intervention strategies for diverse populations to promote the physical, mental, and psychosocial well-being of ethnic/racial minority populations. She has used her exceptional training to address educational disparities for underserved students at all levels, from primary to postsecondary education.

We would like to thank selection committee members who worked to identify the inaugural chair and professors, including: Joanna Brooks, associate vice president for Faculty Advancement; Bill Eadie, director of Academic Labor Relations; Jennifer Imazeki, director for the Center for Teaching and Learning; and Radhika Seshan, dean of the College of Extended Studies.

Thank you,

Joseph F. Johnson, 
Jr., Interim Provost and Senior Vice President

J. Luke Wood,
Chief Diversity Officer and Associate Vice President for Faculty Diversity and Inclusion


About the author

More posts by