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College of Science and Mathematics

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Cal Poly's Dean Bailey Receives Diversity Award

Dean Bailey and President Armstrong with a student at the annual Black Commencement

Phil Bailey, the long-serving dean of Cal Poly’s College of Science and Mathematics, received the 2017 Giving Back Award from INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine, the oldest and largest diversity and inclusion publication in higher education.

The award honors college and university administrators who go beyond their everyday leadership duties and give back to their campuses and communities. Bailey will be featured, along with the 38 other recipients, in the April 2017 Leadership Support and Giving Back magazine edition.

Award recipients were nominated by their colleagues and selected by INSIGHT Into Diversity based on outstanding demonstration of social responsibility; involvement with students, faculty, staff and the community; and commitment to serving underrepresented populations. Each honoree is recognized for his or her passion, dedication and support for diversity and inclusion.

“Phil Bailey sets the example for all of us for what it means to truly care about all students,” said Cal Poly President Jeffrey D. Armstrong. “He is dedicated to student success, especially for underrepresented, undocumented and first generation students.”

Bailey, who is retiring at the end of the school year after 48 years at the university including 34 as college dean, was selected for his long history of taking a personal interest in students who face the greatest challenges while attending college. He has made wide-ranging contributions to the university, including focusing on diversity when hiring faculty and staff in the college, establishing a universitywide program to teach students the importance of adequate studying, and providing Kente cloth for graduates at Black Commencement.

Bailey joined the College of Science and Mathematics faculty in 1969 as an assistant professor of chemistry. He became associate dean in 1973 and dean in 1983, and he served two stints as interim vice president for academic affairs in 1989-90 and again in summer 2015.

Bailey and his wife, Tina, have invited more than 20 students in financial need to live with them over the years and opened their homes to many more. He often shares his cell phone number with students and encourages them to text or call if they are in need, and he was instrumental in establishing the university’s Cal Poly Cares program for food-insecure students.

“The Giving Back Award is being awarded to leaders of institutions of higher education who exemplify what it truly means to ‘give back’ to others,” said Holly Mendelson, publisher of INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine. “These administrators are role models, and we honor their efforts to promote diversity and inclusion on their campuses and in their communities.”

The 39 award recipients include administrators of both community colleges and baccalaureate-granting institutions.

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