Our highest priority is to promote programming and resources that support the recruitment, graduation and success of graduate students from underrepresented groups. Yoji’s background, experience, skill set and passion are a perfect fit for this position.”
Scott Lanyon, Vice Provost & Dean of Graduate Education
Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Grad School announces new associate dean

The Graduate School is pleased to welcome a new associate dean of graduate education, Dr. Yoji Shimizu

Shimizu will serve in a dual role as the associate dean for graduate education and director of the Office for Diversity in Graduate Education


Yoji Shimizu named new associate dean of the Graduate SchoolAfter an extensive internal search and series of interviews with an amazing set of finalists, Scott Lanyon, vice provost and dean of graduate education, has appointed Dr. Yoji Shimizu,  as the new associate dean for graduate education and director of the Office for Diversity in Graduate Education (ODGE). Dr. Shimizu is a Distinguished University Teaching Professor in the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology, and is currently serving as director of the Medical Scientist Training Program and assistant dean for graduate education in the Medical School,.

Shimizu brings more than two decades of experience in higher education as an award-winning professor, principal investigator, and mentor, as well as a passion for graduate education and for increasing the diversity of the University’s graduate programs.  This experience includes service as a Director of Graduate Studies, PI on NIH T32 training grants, and the development of key diversity initiatives through the Medical School’s Office of Biomedical Graduate Research, Education and Training.

As associate dean and director of ODGE, Shimizu will work closely with the vice provost and dean of graduate education and collaborate broadly with faculty and collegiate leaders to advance excellence in graduate education as central to the University’s mission, support student success, and promote and cultivate diversity and inclusion in graduate education as an institutional value and educational priority across the University system.

In addition, Shimizu will assist with strategic planning, provide vision and leadership around diversity issues, and expand and manage initiatives and collaborations to enhance recruitment, professional development, and overall success of underrepresented graduate students.

“We’re thrilled to have Yoji as a part of the Graduate School,” says Scott Lanyon, vice provost and dean of graduate education. “Our highest priority is to promote programming and resources that support the recruitment, graduation and success of graduate students from underrepresented groups. Yoji’s background, experience, skill set and passion are a perfect fit for this position.”

Shimizu earned his bachelor’s degree in biological sciences from Cornell University and his Ph.D. in genetics at University of Wisconsin - Madison. Shimizu completed his postdoctoral work in immunology at the National Institutes of Health before landing his first faculty position at the University of Michigan. He was recruited to the University of Minnesota in 1994, and has since built a successful laboratory and become a nationally recognized leader in the field of immunology.

This position is a 12‐month, 50%‐time, senior academic administrative appointment. Shimizu will hold this position concurrently with his University tenured professor position and MSTP director position..

Special thanks to Dr. Michael Goh, Associate Vice Provost for Equity and Diversity and Director of the Institute for Diversity, Equity, and Advocacy, who chaired the search, and to the search committee.

Congratulations to Dr. Shimizu – we look forward to working with him at the Graduate School!