Diversity is a fact of life. But its inevitability does not mean it’s easy to create or sustain.
In an academic environment steeped in tradition, it can be even tougher to affect change. But Quentin Tyler is doing just that. His efforts to strengthen campus diversity have led the University of Kentucky’s Cooperative Extension Service arm to employ its highest number of women and minorities to date.
In his efforts to help the school recruit, retain and develop a diverse faculty, staff and student population, Tyler, 35, has taken a direct role in the hiring process for nearly 600 people since 2005. He is a key member of the hiring team for more than 200 extension service employees who work across Kentucky’s 120 counties.
He’s also focused on building a diverse pipeline. During his tenure the university’s summer intern program has offered leadership to an increasingly diverse young cohort. Tyler has created a diversity fellowship for graduate students, helped build cultural awareness workshops, and a youth development high school program and conference to introduce the next diverse generation of students to college life.