Will Atkins, currently pursuing his Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction from the UF College of Education, is the new executive director of multicultural and diversity affairs at the University of Florida. He had served as interim executive director since October 2016.
In his new position, Atkins oversees the department’s programs in Black Affairs, Hispanic-Latino Affairs, Asian Pacific Islander American Affairs, Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender and Queer Affairs, and Intercultural Engagement. The multicultural and diversity affairs department supports and empowers underserved communities and leads the UF Division of Student Affairs’ inclusion efforts to accomplish the university’s diversity goals by educating and mobilizing students, campus stakeholders and community partners to create an inclusive, affirming and just campus community.
“In his time as interim executive director of multicultural and diversity affairs, (Will) Atkins has established a proven track record of exemplary professionalism, leadership and relationship-building skills,” wrote David Parrott, Uf vice president for student affairs, in a UF administrative memo announcing Atkins’ permanent appointment.
Parrott said Atkins recently co-led UF’s Black Student Affairs Task Force, launched an intercultural dialogue series and organized the Town Hall with President Kent Fuchs.
An introductory profile of Atkins on the UF home page states that he “strives to create a learning environment that reflects a diversity in thought, experiences and backgrounds. Atkins uses his passion for collaboration and meaningful cross-cultural engagement to provide leadership and advocacy for all students, designing and implementing opportunities for community and identity expression.”
Atkins previously worked as assistant director of the Machen Florida Opportunity Scholars Program at UF. Prior to UF, he worked as associate director of fraternity and sorority life and leadership at Miami University and as assistant director of Greek life at the University of Michigan.
He holds a master’s in higher education administration from the University of Michigan and a B.S. in recreation, parks and tourism from UF.