Dr. Deborah Mitchell Covington

Director of Strategic Partnerships and Equity Initiatives, Michigan Engineering

Through her work in CoE as the Director of Partnerships, Outreach and Recruitment, Debby has demonstrated extraordinary passion, dedication, scholarship, and experience in her positive and transformative impact on our students’ experience and in creating an inclusive climate for everyone. Among her many specific contributions, we want to highlight her development of the Anti-Racism Change It Up! Program and her work on a new Anti-Asian Racism initiative. Her leadership efforts in the AUC-DDEP pipeline program, bringing undergraduate students from Atlanta HBCUs to Michigan Engineering undergraduate degree programs, have helped make U-M a national leader in attracting, mentoring, and supporting these students successfully through their graduation. She has also impacted graduate education through the creation and redevelopment of U-M PUMP (University Partnership for Underrepresented Minority Participation) and EMERGE (Explore Michigan Engineering Research & Graduate Education). Beyond the University, Debby serves on the board of the African Cultural and Historical Museum of Washtenaw County.

Being your best DEI self: Think of a time when you were at your best at advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion. What happened? Who was there? Why did you feel at your best?

“When I’m championing causes to create access for marginalized people.”

In envisioning the future, how would you describe progress in the realm of diversity, equity, and inclusion? What might it look like?

“I envision people working together to create what it might look like.”

What does it mean to you to be a recipient of the MLK Spirit Awards?

“I am grateful to be affiliated with this great man.”

Dr. Deborah Mitchell Covington