Francesca Galarraga, former assistant director of Equal Opportunity and Diversity at Iowa State University, has been named director of diversity education and training in the Office for Diversity and Inclusion at Virginia Tech.

As director of diversity education and training, Galarraga will provide leadership, vision, and direction for the development, coordination, and facilitation of new and existing programs. Her work will continue to deepen Virginia Tech's commitment to being an inclusive, diverse, and engaged learning, living, and working environment. The position reports to the vice president for diversity and inclusion.

“The Office for Diversity and Inclusion is fortunate to have Ms. Galarraga as a member of the diversity and inclusion team,” said Karen Eley Sanders, interim vice president for diversity and inclusion. “Her breadth of knowledge in diversity issues in higher education will add to our institutional strengths and allow our office to further enhance education and advocacy for all members of the Hokie community.”

Galarraga’s responsibilities will include administering diversity education and training programs. She will implement innovative, creative techniques and multidimensional approaches to develop cross-cultural competency in students, faculty, and staff across multiple aspects of institutional life.

“We are very excited about the arrival of Francesca Galarraga,” said Mekeshia Williams, search committee chair, and executive director of University Organizational and Professional Development. “She brings a wealth of knowledge surrounding diversity education and training, with proven experience of working cross functionally in a university setting. I know that her vision, passion, and innovative spirit will move the department to even greater heights.”

Prior to her position at Iowa State University, Galarraga served as diversity program manager at Rockwell Collins. She also worked 10 years for the Walt Disney Company holding several roles including diversity specialist for Walt Disney Parks and Resorts and serving as a Walt Disney World© Resort ambassador.

Galarraga served as a representative to the State of Iowa’s Advisory Committee to the U.S. Civil Rights Commission and as Region VII director for the American Association of Affirmative Action. She is also a certified Myers-Briggs Type Indicator facilitator.

Galarraga earned a master of arts in philosophy from Michigan State University, and a bachelor of arts from Nova University.

Dedicated to its motto, Ut Prosim (That I May Serve), Virginia Tech takes a hands-on, engaging approach to education, preparing scholars to be leaders in their fields and communities. As the commonwealth’s most comprehensive university and its leading research institution, Virginia Tech offers 240 undergraduate and graduate degree programs to more than 31,000 students and manages a research portfolio of $513 million. The university fulfills its land-grant mission of transforming knowledge to practice through technological leadership and by fueling economic growth and job creation locally, regionally, and across Virginia.

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