Dedication Drives DEI in Business

This Kogod School of Business alumna advocates diversity, equity, and inclusion in her role at the American Institutes for Research.

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Kogod alumna Cecilia Majors


 

Kogod alumna Cecilia Majors grew up hearing stories of her abuelito before he immigrated from Ecuador, South America, to the US. “He was a community organizer who helped underserved communities in his small town,” says Majors. “Those stories inspired and stuck with me—I wanted to make a difference even just for one person.”

Now, the senior diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) program manager at the American Institutes for Research (AIR), Majors works directly with AIR’s chief DEI officer and the DEI council to engage colleagues and integrate diversity into all of AIR’s initiatives.

I’ve learned that diversity comes in many forms, and I am so pleased to be in a position where I am not only growing my professional skills and becoming a strong leader, but my personal views of the world are also expanding daily."

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Cecilia Majors

DEI program manager at the American Institutes for Research

After earning her undergraduate degree from New York University, Majors wanted to give back to the Latinx community like her abuelito once did. “I worked with several Latinx nonprofit organizations, and I found that many of them lacked diversity as well as understanding and cultural competence,” says Majors. “Leadership wasn’t committed to diversifying their pipeline, so this experience allowed me to see ways I could move the needle.”

This led Majors to pursue an MBA from the Kogod School of Business. “From finances to marketing, I learned how to be a strong project manager,” says Majors. “I gained a stronger appreciation for how I could expand my reach and become a more well-rounded leader in business by merging my soft skills with my newly learned technical skills.”

Majors was exposed to a diverse student body at Kogod. “My favorite experiences were collaborating with classmates on projects. The immersion courses also allowed us to experience the culture of different cities,” says Majors. “From New York to Brussels and London, understanding global business perspectives helps me to this day with my role in DEI.”

There is no one clear path toward entering the DEI field because this is a value that should be intermixed in all work environments. However, Majors notes that if you’re passionate about DEI, you will find a way to weave it into your professional world.

This is a field for people who have an open mind and are willing to expand their perspectives."

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Cecilia Majors

DEI program manager at the American Institutes for Research

“DEI is not just about race and gender, but also about equity and ensuring that all dimensions of diversity are recognized," explains Majors.

Majors pushes herself daily to continue evolving and educating herself on current events because she says DEI is an ever-evolving journey.

“DEI presents unique challenges that require creative solutions. Changes likely won’t happen overnight, but if we remain steadfast in our commitments, we will see improvement,” says Majors.