Jennifer Alanis, EdD

Jennifer Alanis, EdD

Interim Director

Dr. Jennifer Alanis (she/her/Ella) is a first-generation Mexican American and a justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion (JEDI) leader; she seeks to improve the campus climate of any institution she is a part of. She does this by creating shared learning experiences, equitable policies, and building collaborative relationships that challenge barriers, bring forth diverse dialogue, and provide educational opportunities. By exploring all dimensions of diversity, she hopes to develop positive and inclusive leaders who have a global understanding and can be accountable for creating a more equitable community.

Dr. Alanis focuses on creating an inclusive campus through programming and training and creating strategic plans and partnerships. She has worked in higher education and student affairs for over 16 years and has experience in diversity, inclusion, intercultural relations, and cultural and transfer student centers. She received her BS from Loyola University Chicago with a triple minor in Spanish, women’s studies, and literature. She received an MA in arts, entertainment, and media management from Columbia College Chicago and an MEd in educational policy and organizational leadership from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Dr. Alanis completed her EdD in higher education and organizational change from Benedictine University.

Her research interests include justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion in higher education and at a policy level. She is also interested in access, retention, and success for students from historically excluded communities, first-generation college students, minority-serving institutions—specifically Hispanic Serving Institutions—and access and success of undocumented and DACAmented students. Her teaching areas have included foundations of student affairs in higher education, leadership at minority-serving institutions, and practicum experiences for students.

Dr. Alanis is involved at regional and national levels for the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA), the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), and Alpha Psi Lambda National, Inc. She has also sailed on three voyages of Semester at Sea, once in the summer of 2009 and for the Maymester of 2012 as an LLC. Most recently, Dr. Alanis sailed as the assistant executive dean for the fall 2019 voyage. Dr. Alanis is from Chicago, Illinois, the mother of 4, and the spouse of a Bronze Star military veteran. Before higher education, Dr. Alanis worked for Radio Disney Chicago.

Fun Facts about Dr. Jenny
I used to work for Radio Disney Chicago
I have been to over 45 countries
I was a transfer student and studied abroad in college