Barnard College's Alina Wong named assistant vice provost for Educational Equity

March 21, 2018

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Alina S. Wong, associate dean for student life at Barnard College, has been named assistant vice provost for Educational Equity, effective June 1. In her new role, Wong will work to further Penn State’s diversity, equity and inclusion mission, and advocate for individual students and their families on topics ranging from transitioning to college to academic standing and financial aid.

Throughout her career, Wong, as a facilitator and academic, has focused on social justice education, students' identity development, and institutional practices and policies around equity and social justice.

As assistant vice provost, Wong will report to Marcus Whitehurst, vice provost for Educational Equity at the University

“I’m pleased to welcome Alina Wong as assistant vice provost for Educational Equity,” said Whitehurst. “She brings with her nearly 20 years of leadership experience within higher education — from program creation and oversight to student advising and mentoring. As a dedicated advocate for students, I am confident Alina will have a vital role in forwarding Penn State and Educational Equity’s mission and efforts to foster a diverse and inclusive campus.”

In her new role, Wong will provide leadership for educational equity scholarships, academic support programs, training curricula, bias response, and fundraising and development activities. To address student and University needs related to equity and inclusion, Wong will collaborate with colleagues across Penn State to support student recruitment, orientation, retention and graduate study preparation, as well as academic, personal and leadership development.  

Wong will serve as a resource for colleagues throughout the University to help guide the goals outlined in the University's Statement on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. Wong also will work closely with the Multicultural Resource Center, Office of Veterans Programs, Office for Student Disability Resources, and TRiO programs, including Upward Bound, Upward Bound Migrant, Upward Bound Math and Science, Talent Search, and Educational Opportunity Centers within the Office of the Vice Provost for Educational Equity.

“I am honored to join the Penn State community to contribute to Penn State's longstanding commitment to inclusion, equity and student success,” said Wong. “I am excited for the opportunity to work directly with students and to provide leadership for social justice education, bias response and academic support for underserved student communities. The University’s dedication to fostering student success and inclusive learning environments is obvious, and I am eager to bring my own experiences and knowledge to further this work at Penn State, and to learn from my future colleagues and students.”

Since 2013, in her current position as associate dean for student life at Barnard College, Wong has managed the Department of Student Life, including identity and inclusion programs, social justice education, leadership and community development, orientation, and advising for student organizations. She also responds to bias incidents and develops campus events and initiatives related to social justice, equity and campus climate.

Throughout her career, she has served as assistant director of the Lealtad-Suzuki Center in the Department of Multicultural Life at Macalester College and as associate director of Alumni and Parent Programs at Amherst College. As assistant dean and director for the Intercultural Center at Swarthmore College, Wong provided support and advocacy for Asian American and Pacific Islander, Latino, Native American, LGBTQIA, first-generation, low-income and international students. She also served on the College Judiciary Committee, and developed programs for student success.

Wong also has taught courses on ethnic and cultural studies and social justice in student affairs, and has published and presented on a variety of topics, including diversity and multiculturalism in higher education, decision-making in student affairs, creating inclusive campus communities, racial and gender identity construction, advocacy, cross-cultural dialogues and more.

Among her many affiliations, Wong is a member of Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education (NASPA), American College Personnel Association (ACPA) and the Social Justice Training Institute. In 2016, Wong was the winner of NASPA’s Student Union, Student Activities, Greek Life, Leadership, and Related Excellence Award, and in 2014, she was recognized for her outstanding contributions in mentoring by the Asian Pacific American Network and the ACPA. In 2011, she was awarded with the Association for the Study of Higher Education Dissertation of the Year Award.

Wong received her bachelor of arts degree in history and Spanish from Amherst College, a master’s degree in history from the University of New Mexico, and a doctorate in higher education from the University of Michigan.

  • Alina Wong

    Alina Wong has been named assistant vice provost for Educational Equity, effective June 1, 2018. 

    IMAGE: Penn State
Last Updated March 26, 2018