Professors Chavous, Sen join Office of Research leadership


Tabbye Chavous and Srijan Sen have been appointed to leadership roles within the University of Michigan Office of Research.

Chavous, professor of psychology and education, will serve as associate vice president for research – social sciences, humanities and the arts. Sen, the Frances and Kenneth Eisenberg Professor of Depression and Neurosciences, will serve as associate vice president for research – health sciences.

Their three-year appointments, approved Sept. 19 by the Board of Regents, take effect immediately.

“Professors Chavous and Sen have each demonstrated a strong commitment to advancing research that impacts society,” said Rebecca Cunningham, interim vice president for research. “The health sciences, social sciences, humanities and the arts are critical areas of research that impact our daily lives, and I am confident that professors Chavous and Sen will strengthen the university’s position in these key disciplines.”

As associate vice president for research, Chavous and Sen will support the research efforts of faculty in the health sciences, social sciences, humanities and the arts. They also will collaborate with members of the UMOR leadership team to foster interdisciplinary initiatives, and provide support for UMOR units and programs.

Chavous earned a Ph.D. from the University of Virginia and joined U-M as an assistant professor in 1998. Her research focuses on racial and gender identity development among African-American adolescents and young adults, and implications for academic and psychological adjustment.

She also leads multiple studies exploring how education settings support or inhibit students’ academic and disciplinary identity development in math and science fields.

She served as chair for the Combined Program in Education and Psychology, associate dean for academic programs and initiatives at the Rackham Graduate School, and, most recently, as director of the National Center for Institutional Diversity.

“Collaboration is an essential component of research because the challenges and opportunities facing our society cannot be solved through a singular discipline,” Chavous said. “At the University of Michigan, we are able to leverage our strengths in fields ranging from engineering to medicine with the social sciences, humanities and the arts to address important challenges and opportunities.”

Sen earned both a Ph.D. and a medical degree from U-M, and joined the university as an assistant professor in 2009. Through the Intern Health Study, a large, multi-institution study of training physicians, Sen utilizes genomic, psychological and mobile technology to understand how stress gets under the skin and leads to depression.

Since 2015, Sen has served as associate chair for research and faculty development in the Department of Psychiatry, as well as associate director of the Comprehensive Depression Center.

“We are entering an era with the potential for unprecedented advances through collaborative, interdisciplinary research,” Sen said. “With world-class research across an incredible breadth of academic areas, the University of Michigan is uniquely positioned to lead in this era.”


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