Rhea Mahbubani

Reeling From 2013 Hate Crimes, San Jose State University Hires First-Ever Chief Diversity Officer

A South Bay university is taking steps toward creating an accepting atmosphere on campus, more than two years after finding itself in a racially-tinged maelstrom.

San Jose State University spokeswoman Pat Lopes Harris said Tuesday that officials have hired the school’s first-ever chief diversity officer. At the helm of the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Bay Area native Kathleen Wong(Lau) is tasked with directing the university’s efforts for a “welcoming, safe climate for every member of our community,” according to a news statement.

Three former students were accused of forcing a bike lock around their roommate’s neck, trapping him in a bathroom and bedroom, and more, in 2013. The hate crimes saw the trio get sentenced last month to probation and community service.

For her part, Wong(Lau), who graduated from California State University, East Bay, worked most recently at the University of Oklahoma. She is credited with launching programs for freshmen diversity training and faculty training institutes on inclusive teaching.

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