Staff receive Distinction Award

The team of School of Engineering Diversity Administrators was recently honored with a Tufts Distinction Award.
From left to right: Simone Nicholson, Mafalda Gueta, and Kasandra Yee.

Individuals and teams across all Tufts campuses contribute their unique expertise to make Tufts a thriving and successful community. Some participate in research or teaching, and others attend to areas such as technology services, communications and marketing, or diversity, equity, and inclusion, among other important domains.

Since 2008, the Tufts Distinction Awards have acknowledged exceptional staff and faculty for their outstanding service to students, colleagues, and Tufts programs outside of research and teaching. Co-sponsored by the Office of the President and Human Resources, winners are chosen by a Selection Committee of staff and faculty from across the university. This year the School of Engineering team of Diversity Administrators, including Mafalda Gueta, Simone Nicholson, and Kasandra Yee, won a team Tufts Distinction Award.

The Diversity and Inclusion Administrators (DIPAs) are part of Tufts’ Center for STEM Diversity and are each paired with departments and centers within the School of Engineering, where they help facilitate a welcoming and inclusive environment for students, faculty, and staff. The DIPAs facilitate guest seminars to undergraduate and graduate students on topics ranging from accessibility to ethical and effective team leadership skills. In addition to that student support, through the departments, they offer professional development opportunities for faculty and staff addressing themes like engaging in difficult conversations and implicit bias in faculty hiring. 

Grace Caldara joined Tufts in 2022 as director of the Center for STEM Diversity. “Mafalda, Simone and Kasandra’s knowledge, dedication, and passion for creating a more inclusive environment inspire us all. Today, we celebrate not just their achievements, but their unwavering commitment to making our community a better place for everyone,” she said.