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Eberly College names first associate dean for social justice, faculty development and innovation

Maria del Guadalupe "Lupe" Davidson has been promoted to serve as associate dean for social justice, faculty development and innovation in the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences, effective Jan. 1, 2021. Davidson came to WVU in fall 2019 to serve as the Eberly College’s director and academic coordinator for social justice affairs and professor of women’s and gender studies. 

Lupe Davidson

"Over the past year and half, Professor Davidson, in her leadership role, has made a truly transformative impact for Eberly and our University community," said Gregory Dunaway, dean of the Eberly College. "It is has become abundantly clear that our efforts to improve diversity and justice across all phases of our academic mission will be a priority going forward, and thus they warrant a significant commitment by the College to ensure that we make strong and sustainable efforts." 

In her first one and a half years, Davidson has convened a think tank within the College to engage faculty in developing curricular and administrative changes to improve diversity and pursue social justice goals in the field of higher education. In March 2020, prior to the pandemic, she organized and hosted an activist-in-residence, Sister Rosemary Nyirumbe, who met with students and faculty and also gave public talks, relating her humanitarian work in northern Uganda to the efforts of scholars and activists in Appalachia. In the past two weeks, Davidson has begun coordinating efforts to respond to the events of January 6 through community engagement and dialogue. 

"Professor Davidson will also take a lead role in faculty recruitment and faculty development programming," Dunaway said. "I am confident that her expertise and leadership will be invaluable in preparing our faculty to be successful and to best fulfill the mission of our College and University."

Davidson is also a Woodburn Professor of Women’s and Gender Studies. Prior to coming to WVU, Davidson was associate professor and chair of women’s and gender studies and co-director for the Center for Social Justice at the University of Oklahoma.