Connie Hargrave has been appointed as the new associate dean for equity and engagement for the College of Engineering.
This is a new position for the College of Engineering, but Hargrave is looking forward to the opportunity to work in a meaningful leadership position. Hargrave will serve on the college senior leadership team and report to the dean while also helping with recruitment and retention programs for those with marginalized identities.
Hargrave joined the faculty at Iowa State under the Department of Curriculum and Instruction.
“Much of my teaching and research focused on using technology to develop STEM knowledge in K-12 students,” Hargrave said. “I also served as the director of Iowa State University Science Bound for 11 years.”
Science Bound is Iowa State’s program that focuses on preparing Iowa K-12 students of color to pursue science, technology, engineering or math (STEM) degrees and careers. Science Bound partnered annually with over 400 students and 19 schools. Now Hargrave is a professor in the School of Education.
“I conduct research on K16 educational and social structures that empower students of color to excel in STEM,” she said.
Hargrave plans to use this knowledge in her new position, which focuses on diversity and inclusion.
“My primary goal as the new associate dean is to help leverage the College of Engineering’s strong commitment to a culture of inclusion and develop new opportunities that maximize the advantages of diverse perspectives and experiences,” Hargrave said.
She plans to initially concentrate on student experience. Next year, she hopes to spend a lot of time with engineering students to gain an understanding of what it means to be a member of the College of Engineering.
She also said making minority groups on campus feel included and safe is always a top priority.
“Helping students feel included and safe on campus is the role of everyone — faculty, staff, administrators and students,” she said. “I want to embolden engineering students to use their individual and collective power to make Iowa State the campus where every engineering student thrives.”
Hargrave is looking forward to connecting with students and working with the leadership in the College of Engineering. She is a little nervous about her new position but dedicated to doing her best.
“I’m nervous about making sure every engineering student develops a rich understanding of equity and diversity and how this knowledge and skill set will influence their ability to excel professionally and personally,” Hargrave said.
When asked what Hargrave wished students knew about her, she said she is interested in comedy.
“Outside of work, I do a little stand-up comedy,” she said. “Learning and laughing go hand in hand.”