Denise Beautreau will begin as the director of Lehigh’s Center for Student Access and Success. Dr. Donald Outing, vice president for Equity & Community announced she will begin this role on February 3, 2020. (Courtesy of Lehigh University)

Denise Beautreau named new director of student access


Lehigh’s Center for Student Access and Success announced its newest director in an email from the Office of Diversity, Inclusion & Equity this afternoon. 

Denise Beautreau, who has been with the university for six years, will assume the directorship on February 3, 2020, the email said. 

As director of the center, Beautreau will work with the American Talent Initiative and advise the F1RST Club for first-generation students, said the email from Dr. Donald Outing, vice president for Equity & Community. 

Previously, Beautreau has worked as a manager of Lehigh’s General Chemistry Laboratory, an advocate for Lehigh’s Student Scholars Institute and a chemistry instructor for the summer bridging program.  

She replaces Dr. George White, who served as the Center’s inaugural director from October 2017 until his May 2019 retirement. Under White’s tenure, 206 first-generation students graduated in 2019.

She will move into her new office in Alumni Memorial Building, Room 201, on Feb. 3, Outing’s email said.

Beautreau is a past winner of Lehigh’s Club/Organization Advisor of the Year award for her leadership of Alpha Chi Sigma chemistry fraternity and Lehigh’s chapter of the National Society of Black Engineers. 

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  1. Humble Opinion on

    All the best to her, I hope that this office continues to grow.

    However, I am not exactly sure what makes her qualified for this role. Although she has been noted for her work with NSBE on campus, it is not clear how lab management experience translates to the complexities of student access and success. How well is she positioned to “implement a comprehensive set of university-wide strategies addressing recruitment and admission, financial aid, student life, academic coaching and advisement, and postgraduate support”, with what appears to be limited experience from what I can gather. It is important that she represents the “underrepresented communities’ her office is made to serve in the first place but I am still unsure what she else brings to the table beyond that.

    • Amy Charles ‘89 on

      Holy crap.

      Did white boy here, who I’m not aware was on the selection committee, just say “she got the job because she’s black”?

      Say it again, man. Say it right out loud and sign your name.

      Welcome to the job, Prof. Beautreau.

  2. Robert F Davenport Jr on

    Nobody gave a rats ass about my being a first generation student and I wasn’t a WASP. Before matriculation of non-male students at Lehigh, insensitivity was a common trait.

    I’m thinking, withholding any value judgements and with ignorance of related history, that accommodations instituted by the administration for specific student populations have some effect on the raises in tuition that are so often decried. Necessary or not, all things have a price to be paid; it’s the administration’s responsibility to make those tough decisions.

    Note that the second paragraph is the serious part of this comment.

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