Dr. Jarrel T. Johnson is a scholar-practitioner whose scholarship and educational practice is guided by critical college student identity, higher education leadership, and organizational change theories. Namely, Dr. Johnson's research examines how administrators at historically Black Colleges and Universities work to promote the inclusion of LGBTQ students. As an Iowa State University Presidential Scholar (2017-2021) and 2020 National Academy of Education (NAEd)/Spencer Dissertation fellow at Iowa State University, he focused his dissertation on investigating institutional practices and policies that promoted the inclusion of Black queer and trans* collegians attending HBCUs. Consequently, Dr. Johnson constructed the Model for Transformational Change at HBCUs (MTI at HBCUs) to assist HBCU administrators in designing and executing inclusion efforts for Black LGBTQ students on their respective campuses. Dr. Johnson is currently faculty at the University of Utah as a tenure-track Assistant Professor of Higher Education.
Previously, Dr. Johnson served as a Research and Evaluation Officer at the Susan Thompson Buffet Foundation. In this role, Dr. Johnson oversaw large-scale and complex research and evaluation projects aimed at increasing public college access and success for students from diverse backgrounds (e.g., first-generation, low socioeconomic, racially minoritized). Dr. Johnson has an extensive higher education background in designing and implementing student success programs, policies, and services to maximize overall collegiate success. In particular, Dr. Johnson has held higher education administrative appointments at Cornell University, Iowa State University, Emory University, and Morehouse College. These roles involved developing and implementing academic and student engagement initiatives to increase the retention and graduation for students from underrepresented backgrounds. Dr. Johnson earned a Ph.D. in higher education administration (with a minor in women’s and gender studies) from Iowa State University and a M.Ed. in higher education leadership from Mercer University. He also holds a B.A. in English from Shaw University, the oldest HBCU in the South.