Recognizing Colorado State's 78 graduating student-athletes from the 2013-14 academic year. Photos by Tom Waido.
Colorado State University has hired Dr. Albert Bimper, Jr., as a full-time appointment at the academic rank of Assistant Professor in the Department of Ethnic Studies and to the newly-created position of Senior Associate Athletic Director for Diversity and Inclusion. The 2006 Colorado State graduate and former Rams football student-athlete, comes back to his alma mater from Kansas State University where he has served as an assistant professor in the Department of Special Education, Counseling & Student Affairs and served as a mentor to the Wildcats' student-athletes.
In his new role at Colorado State, Dr. Bimper will have a tenure-track appointment in Ethnic Studies that will combine teaching, research and service responsibilities. He will have an office in the department and will be a fully participating faculty member. Dr. Bimper will teach both undergraduate and graduate courses, focusing primarily but not exclusively on courses in African American studies.
"We are very excited about Dr. Albert's presence on this campus, for he will bring diversity, prestige, knowledge and intellectual acumen to his research, teaching and outreach/service," said Irene Vernon, PhD, Professor/Chair of CSU's Ethnic Studies Department. "As well, his research in the area of race and his commitment to social justice is in line with the mission of the department. His joint appointment in Ethnic Studies and Athletics is a perfect pairing of his strengths and abilities, and I foresee a strong relationship being built between these two entities."
"This is an exciting and important hire for Colorado State Athletics, and for our University," said Jack Graham, Director of Athletics at Colorado State. "It is especially meaningful to welcome back a former Ram student-athlete to a new position that is core to the enhancement of our student-athletes' experience. Albert is an outstanding person whose character and knowledge will significantly optimize our ability to most effectively meet the needs of our student-athletes."
Dr. Bimper, who was a four-year starter at center for the Rams from 2002-05, completed his Ph.D. in Curriculum & Instruction with a concentration in Cultural Studies in Education at the University of Texas, and holds a Master of Science degree in Sport Psychology from Purdue University.
"It's an honor to have the opportunity to come back to Colorado State University in a role that promotes CSU's commitment to diversity and inclusion, but also both athletics and academics," said Dr. Bimper. "It's interesting to think how things have come full circle since I graduated from CSU. I left serving in a dual role as a student-athlete and now return to the university with a similar blend of responsibilities as a professor and athletic administrator. I'm very excited to join the faculty and athletic department as an ambassador for diversity and inclusion and to work toward enhancing all student experiences at CSU."
Dr. Bimper will be responsible for managing and facilitating all diversity and inclusion programs within the Department of Athletics at Colorado State. He will be charged with implementing a comprehensive diversity and inclusion program for student-athletes that focuses on transition, adjustment and retention, and will develop and facilitate leadership programs for coaches, teams and athletics department staff.
Part of his duties will be to assess the outcomes of programming and curriculum initiatives with a particular focus on the recruitment and retention of diverse coaches, staff and student-athletes. He also will work in close collaboration with the Vice President for Diversity and the Vice President for Student Affairs on diversity and student initiatives, work collaboratively with campus offices and organizations, the NCAA and the Mountain West Conference on diversity and inclusion initiatives and assist with communication and community-building with former student-athletes.
Dr. Bimper's experiences as a collegiate student-athlete, professional football player and as a coach and mentor to student-athletes have contributed to his passion to make an impact in the areas of sports, education and social justice. His research and pedagogical interests have focused on student-athlete development, particularly the intersection of race and sport and how they are related to identity and the educational development of student-athletes of color.
An additional aim of his research and teaching has been as an advocate for social justice to further develop culturally relevant and meaningful educational experiences for student-athletes of color. His current and forthcoming research can be found in The Journal of Black Psychology, Race, Ethnicity and Education, The Journal of College Student Development, and Quest.
Bimper was a four-year starter (2002-05) and helped lead his Rams teams to three bowl games in his career. As a redshirt-sophomore in 2002, Bimper started 11 of the team's 14 games, including the Liberty Bowl vs. TCU, as the Rams went 10-4 and claimed their most recent Mountain West championship.
In his career Bimper played in 39 games and started 37, earning honorable mention All-Mountain West recognition in 2004, when he started all 11 games for CSU. He was chosen captain for the game vs. Air Force during his 2005 senior season. Bimper was also apart of the Super Bowl Champion Indianapolis Colts' in 2006.
A native of Irving, Texas, Bimper is a 2001 graduate of Bowie High School in Arlington, where he compiled a 3.9 grade-point average and was a member of the National Honor Society. He was a three-year letterman in football and a two-time letterman in track and field. Bimper was twice chosen team captain in football and earned all-city and all-state honors as a junior and senior, as well as team offensive MVP and best lineman.
Throughout his career in higher education, Dr. Bimper has frequently made scholarly presentations at several national conferences. He is a past recipient of the Graduate Diversity Award from the North American Society for the Sociology of Sport and a past Graduate Recruitment Fellow honored by the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement at The University of Texas.
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