Patrick J. Sims, Vice Provost for Diversity & Climate and Chief Diversity Officer
Patrick J. Sims was permanently appointed Vice Provost and Chief Diversity Officer at University of Wisconsin-Madison in May 2015, having served as interim vice provost and chief diversity officer since 2013.
Sims joined the UW–Madison faculty in 2004 and is a full professor in the Department of Theatre & Drama. He developed the Theatre for Cultural and Social Awareness (TCSA) interactive theatre-based training model that dramatizes sensitive subject matters for universities, corporate and non-profit organizations. Sims is a founding member and artistic director of the Human Experience Theatre (HET) at UW-Milwaukee, has served as summer faculty at the School for Asia–Karuizawa in Japan and as faculty director of UW–Madison’s “The Studio” Creative Arts and Design residential learning community.
In addition to oversight for institution-wide diversity, Sims leads the Division of Diversity, Equity & Educational Achievement, which encompasses the University’s major diversity scholarship and service programs. These programs, like the Chancellor’s Scholar Program which is more than 30 years old, represent the University’s historic and innovative initiatives to recruit, retain and graduate a diverse student body. His teams are responsible for guiding and supporting the work of the Office of the Provost on matters related to diversity of students, staff, faculty, as well as classroom, workplace, and general campus climate.
A first-generation college student himself, Sims understands the realities faced by students who inhabit multiple identities, particularly when issues of race, gender, class, culture and sexual identity collide.
Ruby Paredes, Assistant Vice Provost for Diversity & Climate and Campus Multicultural Disadvantaged Coordinator
Ruby Paredes is an assistant vice chancellor for diversity and climate, as well as a faculty fellow at the Center for Southeast Asian Studies. She is a key member of UW–Madison’s Ad Hoc Diversity Planning Committee (AHDPC), working to create a new blueprint for campus diversity efforts. In 1999, she helped found the Precollege Enrichment Opportunity Program for Learning Excellence (PEOPLE), a program providing a pre-college experience that prepares students from underrepresented minority and first-generation/disadvantaged backgrounds to attend college.
Originally from the Philippines, Paredes is passionate about globalizing student educational experiences. In the former Office of Student Affairs, she served as chief of staff and executive assistant, responsible for serving as liaison to university schools, colleges and administrative units.
Paredes continues to serve as the campus coordinator for multicultural/disadvantaged student issues and liaison to UW System for the recruitment and retention of multicultural/disadvantaged students. Working in conjunction with Chief Diversity Officer Patrick Sims, her responsibilities include assisting the Vice Provost in campus-wide diversity work along with oversight and development of divisional programs and aligning the OVPCDO/DDEEA vision with the UW-Madison Diversity Framework and UW System strategic plan.
She is a beloved student and staff mentor and the long-time organizer of the UW-Madison Outstanding Women of Color Award, and in 2011, she received the Multicultural Student Center’s Outstanding Faculty/Staff Award for her dedication to diversity efforts.
Leading Diversity Initiatives and Services that Impact the Entire Campus Community
The Division of Diversity, Equity and Educational Achievement aims to addresses the university’s strategic diversity interests by enhancing strategic impact, collaborative possibilities and equitable educational outcomes on local, national, and global levels. Component units include the Chancellor’s and Powers Knapp Scholars, Center for Educational Opportunity, LCICE, the Office for Equity and Diversity, the Office of Multicultural Arts Initiatives/First Wave, Pathways, PEOPLE and Posse.
The division works to make progress toward increasing access for all qualified students, especially for underrepresented minorities and women in the STEM areas; eliminating the achievement gap between majority and underrepresented students; recruiting and retaining a more diverse faculty and staff; preparing all students, staff and faculty to thrive personally and professionally in a diverse, global, interconnected world; and enhancing the campus climate for inclusion.