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School & Program Updates

Yale: Incoming Dean for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Mayur Desai Eager to Start New Role

Associate professor, Dr. Mayur Desai, has spent his career working on improving quality of care and health care equity.

He hopes to bring that same drive and energy to his new position as the Yale School of Public Health’s inaugural associate dean for diversity, equity, and inclusion.

A four-time recipient of the YSPH Distinguished Teaching Award, the school’s highest honor, Dr. Desai recently discussed diversity, equity, and inclusion at YSPH and some of his plans moving forward.

What ideas do you have for building a more inclusive, equitable, and diverse community at YSPH?

MD: Even as we work to further diversify our student body, staff, and faculty, I think it’s important to recognize and appreciate our diversity along so many axes. I want to work with YSPH’s Diversity Committee, affinity groups, student diversity ambassadors, and anyone with ideas to share, to find ways of celebrating our diversity and making sure that everyone in our community feels a genuine sense of belonging and of feeling supported, especially in this divisive political climate.

Diversity, equity, and inclusion are core values of YSPH. How do you see an expansion of these principles – through your role as associate dean – impacting the school’s mission in terms of learning and instruction?

MD: YSPH has long offered both epidemiology and policy courses focused on health disparities. In recent years, we have expanded our curriculum to include courses addressing stigma and the health of marginalized populations, as well as a new core course for all MPH students focused on social justice and health equity.

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