Yetunde Odugbesan-Omede, Ph.D., is currently the Director of the Office of Community and Civic Engagement and Professor of Global Affairs and Politics at Farmingdale State College (FSC). At FSC, she is responsible for overseeing all institutional-wide initiatives that fosters campus-community collaboration by engaging the university’s academic resources in the enrichment of civic and community life. Dr. Yetunde creates community engagement efforts through a range of activities that promote social action, faculty scholarship and service, student leadership, and developing strategic local and global partnerships. As a faculty member, Dr. Yetunde teaches courses on Comparative Politics, Women in Comparative Political Development, Imperialism, Global Politics, African Politics, American Foreign Policy and others. She is a pracademic who has extensive practitioner and academic based experience in global affairs, higher education and human capital development. Dr. Yetunde brings a strong track record in organizational leadership and a progressive approach to institutional development, policy advocacy and global affairs. She is a four time author, political commentator, global speaker and highly sought after global advisory member for think tanks and institutions.
Dr. Yetunde's area of research expertise is in good governance and global ethics. She was recently awarded a four year tenure as a Fulbright Specialist Scholar in the Fulbright Program under the U.S. Department of State. As a recognition of her contribution and impact in the field of higher education, civic and community engagement and international affairs, Dr. Yetunde was inducted into Rutgers University African-American Hall of Fame Class of 2021. In addition, her work thus far has been inscribed on a paver at Rutgers University Paul Robeson Plaza, a historic tribute to Rutgers most distinguished alumnus.
Dr. Yetunde previously worked at United Nations Population Fund, Executive Board and External Relations division, Rutgers University School of Public Affairs and Administration (where she was integral in creating the first undergraduate Public Service Major in the country, creation of the executive EMPA certificate in Executive Management in Public Administration, and co-authoring a book on Public Service and Civic Engagement), she also worked in the New Jersey State Ethics Commission, Rutgers Institute for Anti-Corruption Studies amongst others. Dr. Yetunde's interest in global ethics, good governance, human rights, gender equality, and public service has influenced her academic scholarship and professional endeavors. She received her Doctorate of Philosophy degree in Global Affairs and her Masters of Science in Global Affairs with a concentration in International Law from Rutgers University. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Media Studies with a double minor in Africana Studies and Organizational Leadership from Rutgers University as well. She received her certification in U.S. Public Policy: Social, Economic, and Foreign Policies from Harvard University. She also has certificates in international relations, international business, and applied political leadership. She was an Atlantik-Brucke Young Leader, New Leaders Council Fellow, Rutgers Emerging Leaders Scholar, Ronald E. McNair Scholar, Minority Academic Careers Fellow, Eagleton Institute of Politics Fellow and graduate of the United Nations Worldview Institute.
Dr. Yetunde is a member of the National Coalition of 100 Black Women (NCBW) Long Island chapter. She is also serves on the Public Policy, Women and Girls Mentorship and United Nations committee for NCBW. She is a committee member for Rutgers University Alumni Committee on Diversity and Inclusion. She served as a Senior Fellow for the Millennial Policy Initiative Commission on Gender Equity. Millennial Policy Initiative (MPI), serves as an incubator for modern policy reform and works with elected officials from across the country to provide vital policy recommendations and to promote more equitable representation of women in elected office. Dr. Yetunde was also appointed to serve as the Chair of Humanitarian Affairs and Social Advocacy for the City of Newark African Commission under former Mayor Cory Booker who is presently the junior Senator of New Jersey.
Dr. Yetunde has held many leadership positions. Currently, she is an executive member of Rutgers University Alumni Board for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion. She also served as a member on the 20th National Presidential Search Committee, who was charged with selecting the immediate past President of Rutgers University, Dr. Robert L. Barchi. During her doctoral studies, Dr. Yetunde was elected as the first woman after ten years of its inception as the President of Student Association of Global Affairs. She was also elected Vice President of Graduate Student Government Association and President of Sigma Iota Rhota Honor Society for International Affairs.
Her work has also reached South Africa and Nigeria where she has met and worked with government officials and heads of state to improve policies and initiatives that empower youth population and human security. She has held seminars in Nigeria on empowering young women to lead and has been hosted by the former heads to state to speak on good governance, human capital development and technological innovation. She has also met former first lady of South Africa, Winnie Mandela where she worked to help create global education partnerships between Universities in South Africa and the United States. She also spent a short time working as an educator in Pretoria, South Africa during her graduate studies through Rutgers South Africa Initiative.
Her various passions and mission to pay it forward is often recognized in the various philanthropic and humanitarian initiatives she lends herself to. Dr. Yetunde, is the Founder of Young Woman's Guide, an organization that provides leadership development and training to young women from all backgrounds. To date they have trained hundreds of young women and girls throughout the United States, Nigeria and South Africa. Dr. Yetunde was a board member for the Barack Obama Green Charter High School in Plainfield, NJ. She was the also the former Chair of Youth Affairs for Nigerians in the Diaspora Organization (NIDO) and served as a board member for New York Needs You (NYNY).
Dr. Yetunde is a contributor for the Guardian Newspaper where she writes articles in the Law, Politics and Leadership sections of The Guardian Newspaper. Dr. Yetunde is the author of four books, her most recent book is titled Balance: Balancing Life, Love, Family, Career and the Pursuit of Your Dreams. She also authored, Young Woman's Guide, a book titled after her foundation, which provides personal and leadership advice for young women from all backgrounds. In addition, Dr. Yetunde is a global speaker where she speaks around the world on good governance, leadership and women empowerment.
Her mission in life is to pay it forward, develop institutional excellence, empower people to be change leaders and create positive global impact.
AWARDS & HONORS
2023 President's CARE Award for Excellence in Professional Service
Recipient, 2022 Exceptional Service and Commitment to Nigerian Diaspora issued by Nigerian in the Diaspora Organization NJ Chapter
Recipient, 2022 Exemplary Leader of the Nigerian Community Awards issued by Office of of the Mayor for International Relations and Diaspora-City of Newark
2022 Who's Who Nigerian Diaspora Recognition
Inductee, Rutgers University African-American Hall of Fame Class of 2021
2020 Most Influential People of African Descent Top 100 Under 40 List in Politics and Governance
Farmingdale Woman Scholar Recognition, Farmingdale State College
Woman of Distinction Award for Teen Mentoring, NCBWLI
Phenomenal Womyn Award, Farmingdale State College
2019 Future Leadership & Policy Award, Forbes & Africa Future Fund
2018 Social Justice Distinguished Scholar Award, Farmingdale State College
Humanitarian Award of Excellence, City of Newark and Nigerians in Diaspora Organization
Young Business Leader of the Year, CNBC Africa/AABLA
Diaspora Achievers of USA
Influential African Woman Recognition, Ebony Life TV
Nigeria Centenary Achievement Award, NCUSA
Top Five Young-Entrepreneurs, Africa Fashion Week
Leading Woman Recognition, BusinessDay Nigeria
Top 13 Young Economic and Business Leaders, Ventures Africa Magazine
Uncrowned Community Builders Award
World of Difference Award,The International Alliance for Women
New Leaders Council 40 Under 40 Nomination
Badagry Pilgrim Award, King of Badagry (Nigeria)
Emerging Personality of the Year, Eminent Leaders Magazine
Silent Superhero Recognition, Madam Noire Magazine
Governor Jon S. Corzine Academic Achievement Award,Office of New Jersey State Governor
Rutgers Emerging Leader Award
New Jersey State Educational Opportunity Fund Academic Achievement Award
Minority Academic Career (MAC) Undergraduate Research Fellow & Scholar
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. Soro Soke: The youths have spoken. Guardian Newspaper. October 2020.
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. George Floyd: A reflection of a global problem. June 2020.
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. Where is the money. Guardian Newspaper. May 2020.
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. Government's Essential Item: Humans. Guardian Newspaper. April 2020.
Odugbesan-Oemde, Yetunde. COVID-19 and its rude awakening. Guardian Newspaper. April 2020.
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. Sexual exploitation of students. Guardian Newspaper. October 2019.
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. Human Insecurity: A Global Vulnerability. Guardian NewspaperJuly 2019
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. No man is an island. Guardian Newspaper. May 2019
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. Empowerment manifesto: A call to power. Guardian Newspaper. April 2019
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. Empathy in politics. Guardian Newspaper. February 2019
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. The hidden truth why women limit their dreams. Guardian Newspaper. November 2018
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. You are whole all by yourself. Guardian Newspaper. September 2018
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. When a leader lacks self awareness. Guardian Newspaper. August 2018
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. A fleet of transactional leaders are controlling the government. Guardian
Newspaper. June 2018
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. Mentorship without empathy causes more harm than good. Guardian
Newspaper. June 2018
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. World Bank: Let’s stop reducing the girl-child to a dollar amount. Guardian
Newspaper. May 2018
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. Godfatherism in Africa: Do women and young people stand a
chance to lead? Guardian Newspaper. March 2018
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. You have to first see it in yourself. Guardian Newspaper. March
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. Everything begins with a vision. Guardian Newspaper. March 2018
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. Social Justice cannot be achieved without ethical leadership.
Guardian Newspaper. February 2018
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. Human beings are not machines. Guardian Newspaper. January 2018
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. Leadership is knowing when its time to pass the baton. Guardian
Newspaper. December 2017
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. To be successful you must learn how to manage and lead. Guardian
Newspaper. December 2017
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. Responsibility to protect youths. Guardian Newspaper. November
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. Lead from within. Guardian Newspaper. October 2017
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. Young Woman's Guide Deluxe. Forthcoming. 2023
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. The Balance Guide: Quotes and Affirmation on Living a Balanced Life. 2020
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. Balance: Balancing Life, Love, Family and the Pursuit of Your Dreams. 2020
Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. Young Woman's Guide. 2015
Holzer, Marc, Etta, Mahako, Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. A Call to Serve: Quotes on Public
Service. School of Public Affairs and Administration. Rutgers University. 2009
Assistant Editor. Public Performance and Management Review. M.E. Sharpe Publishers. Co-
Sponsored by the National Center for Public Performance at Rutgers-Newark, and the Section on
Public Performance and Management of the American Society for Public Administration.
December 2009. Vol.33, (2); March 2010. Vol.33, (3); June 2010. Vol.33, (4); September 2010. Vol.
34, (1); December 2010. Vol.34, (2); March 2011. Vol.34, (3).
Gholar, A’shanti; Lowry, Colleen; Odugbesan-Omede, Yetunde. Millennium Policy Institute
Gender Equity Report. Millennium Policy Institute. September 2018.