Office of Diversity, Equity and Engagement Staff

  • Meara M. Habashi, Ph.D.

    Associate Dean for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

    Dr. Habashi comes to UVA from Purdue University’s Krannert School of Management, where she served on the faculty for five years. An expert in social and workplace behaviors, she also led Purdue’s Brock-Wilson Center for Women in Management, which empowers women to overcome gender obstacles in the workplace and prepares students to lead and excel in a diverse workforce and changing social climate. Prior to her work at Purdue, Dr. Habashi taught psychological and brain sciences for five years at the University of Iowa.

    Contact Dr. Habashi
  • Amanda Fortune

    Operations Manager

    Amanda provides general operating support for the Office of Diversity, Equity and Engagement, such as budget oversight and fiscal management for the CDE and affilated student organizations. Amanda also serves as a human resources liason and provides administrative support to other CDE Support Staff members. 

    Contact Amanda

Center for Diversity in Engineering Staff

  • James Bland, M.Ed


    James assists with the daily operation of the Center for Diversity in Engineering (CDE) and serves as the advisor of culturally based CIOs within the Engineering School. Additionally, he provides equity-focused programming, strategic diversity, and serves as an advocate and champion for undergraduate and graduate students from underrepresented groups.

    Contact James
  • Katie Giwa-Osagie

    Program Coordinator

    In the CDE, Katie facilitates community-building programs with a specific focus on the support of the Latinx community and Women within UVA Engineering. She is responsible for implementing and coordinating ongoing and one-off programs that contribute to student identity and leadership development, promoting equitable and safe environments within UVA Engineering, facilitating education on gender justice, and building a community of student leaders.

    Contact Katie
  • Trisha Garcia

    Graduate Assistant

    Trisha participates in the development of new programs that seek to support a diverse group of Engineering students. Specific programs include Summer Bridge, The Circle Project, CDE community dialogues, workshops/trainings, student advising, and assisting with programs supporting the greater development of career, leadership, equity, and academic success for underrepresented students (undergraduate and graduate) within Engineering.

    Contact Trisha

UVA's Clark Scholars Team

  • Devin K. Harris

    Clark Scholars Faculty Director

    Dr. Harris is a Professor in the Department of Engineering Systems and Environment (Civil Engineering) at the University of Virginia. In his role as Faculty Director, Professor Harris leads the Clark Scholars Program within the School of Engineering and Applied Science. As Faculty Director, his responsibilities center on the design, oversight and strategic planning for the four-year UVA Clark Scholars Program (CSP). Professor Harris also works to engage the Program and its Scholars with UVA Engineering leadership, University Leadership, while also providing academic and professional support to the Scholars. Other responsibilites included selection of incoming Clark Scholars in collaboration with the Offices of Admissions and Student Financial Services.

    Professor Harris' Faculty Page
  • Jessica Harris

    Program Director

    Jessica Harris is the Program Director of the Clark Scholars Program in the School of Engineering and Applied Science at the University of Virginia. As the Program Director, Jessica Harris focuses on program implementation with a primary emphasis on student-centered programming. Responsibilities include planning leadership programs for the academic year, advising the CSP Leadership Council, overseeing the operational tasks of the Program, supervising academic year tutors, and coordinating and partnering with UVA Engineering staff. Ms. Harris also plans and executes the six-week summer program and supervises summer resident assistants. As Program Director, Ms. Harris works directly with the Faculty Director on Program design revisions and facilitates Scholar engagement in this process. 

    UVA Clark Scholars Program
  • Karen Sleezer

    Senior Administrative Coordinator

    Karen Sleezer is an Education Outreach Assistant/Workshop Facilitator in the Center for Transportation Studies at the University of Virginia School of Engineering and the Program Associate for the Clark Scholars Program. In her role as Program Associate, Karen Sleezer provides part-time administrative and logistical support to the Faculty Director and Program Director, especially for short-term projects. Examples include the design and implementation of the unique Summer 2021 meal plan, purchasing logo items as gifts and incentives, and assembling semester care packages during the heavily virtual 2020-21 academic year.

    Contact Karen