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Passionate commitment to equity, inclusion, and community transformation



Marta Elena Esquilin is a social justice educator, higher education administrator, and DEI (diversity, equity, inclusion) consultant.  She currently serves as the Associate Dean of the Honors Living Learning Community at Rutgers Newark, and Assistant Professor of Professional Practice in the American Studies Program within the Faculty of Arts and Sciences. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology from the University of Vermont in 1999, and her Master’s Degree in 2003 from Teachers College, Columbia University in Higher Education Administration. In 2005, under the leadership of Dr. Derald Wing Sue, she was a co-author of the seminal article, “Racial microaggressions in everyday life: Implications for clinical practice”.  American Psychologist, 62(4), 271-286.    

Prior to her role at Rutgers University-Newark, Marta served as the Director for Social Justice and Intercultural Programs within the Office of Multicultural Affairs at Columbia University, trainer/consultant for the Posse Foundation, and held various positions at non-profit organizations focused on youth development, access & equity in higher education, and community building.   She recently served as the National Lead Consultant for the BOLD Women’s Leadership Network and as the Board Chair of CLAGS (Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies), the oldest LGBTQ research center in the country.  She was the first Latina to serve in this role and is committed to raising awareness about issues impacting LGBTQ communities of color.   She works as a diversity expert and consultant within organizational and educational environments including secondary schools, non-profit organizations, social service agencies, corporate settings, and higher education institutions around the United States.

Marta’s passion and current work focuses on creating inclusive environments that encourage the positive development and success of all people. She is particularly interested in raising awareness about how microaggressions operate to create hostile environments for people with marginalized social identities within work and school settings.  To this end, she has developed trainings and assessment tools aimed at increasing cultural competence, addressing the impacts of implicit bias & microaggressions, and creating sustainable infrastructures to support student success within educational settings. Her work aims to equip administrators, faculty, and staff with the skills necessary to create inclusive classrooms and environments that are affirming to all identities and experiences. Most recently, she has been working closely with faculty to build inclusive syllabi, develop tools and skills for managing group dynamics, classroom discussions, and facilitating conflict within mixed identity settings.

Watch me in action

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