Brigham Young University Vice President for Belonging Carl Hernandez appointed Lita Little Giddins and Julianne Grose as associate vice presidents in the Office of Belonging.
In these newly created roles, Little Giddins and Grose will assist the Office of Belonging in fully engaging students, faculty, staff and university leadership in achieving the lofty goals of BYU’s Statement on Belonging.
“Lita uses her considerable talents and gifts to inspire, heal, and create a sense of belonging for those she serves," Hernandez said. "Those who meet Lita can immediately feel her love and deep spiritual commitment to the Savior and to serving ‘the one.’ Lita’s appointment will provide substantial support to the Office of Belonging’s work to create university-wide belonging experiences and to address wellness issues throughout the university, particularly in the areas of emotional and mental health.”
Prior to this appointment, Little Giddins worked as the coordinator of diversity, collaboration and inclusion in the College of Family, Home, and Social Science at BYU. She currently serves as a member of BYU’s Committee for Race, Equity & Belonging. She is a licensed clinical social worker, incorporating expressive arts/creative therapies. Her undergraduate degree is in Socio-cultural Anthropology, and she also received an AA in Fine Arts, both from BYU. Little Giddins has lived in England as a religious and community volunteer, and conducted workshops throughout Europe, Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic and the USA using her expressive talents to lift and inspire others toward growth, wellness and peace within themselves, their organizations and their community.
“Julianne proactively incorporates belonging principles into her curriculum as she mentors students in the classroom and in labs through high-quality research experiences," Hernandez said. "She demonstrates her love for students by her personal example of sacrifice and service on their behalf. Julianne’s substantial scholarship and teaching experience will assist the Office of Belonging to engage faculty in gospel-centered belonging efforts, and to engage the university community in gospel-centered belonging curriculum and experiential learning opportunities.”
Grose began teaching at BYU in 2008 as a molecular biology faculty member. Her research focuses on cellular metabolism and bacteriophages, which are viruses that infect bacteria, the most abundant cellular life on the planet. Grose recently received the Lives Award from the Be the Match Marrow Donor Foundation for her work with bone marrow transplant registry. She has been awarded many honors in her time at the university, such as the C. Joseph Rowberry Teaching and Learning Faculty Fellowship and the Maeser Excellence in Teaching Award. She earned a Ph.D. in biology and a B.S. in chemistry and mathematics, all from the University of Utah.
Both Grose’s and Giddins’s appointments are effective immediately.
The Office of Belonging was created in 2022 to help “strive to create a community of belonging composed of students, faculty and staff whose hearts are knit together in love.”
Read more about the office at belonging.byu.edu.