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Kenyon Lee Whitman, M.A., Program Director, Office of Foster Youth Support Services/Guardian Scholars

Kenyon Lee Whitman, M.A.

Program Director, Office of Foster Youth Support Services/Guardian Scholars
Tel: (951) 827-6545

Kenyon has a B.S. in Kinesiology from Fresno State and a M.A. from Fresno State in Higher Education Leadership and Administration. He is working toward a PhD in Higher Education Administration and Policy at UCR. His research focuses on underrepresented students in higher education, specifically, the college-going experiences of foster youth.

Kenyon has worked in a range of student affairs venues, including Residential Life, Service-Learning, and Outreach and Recruitment. As a former foster youth, he understands first-hand the challenges foster youth face as they work toward earning a college degree. Kenyon began working as the director of OFYSS in 2015.

Tuppett M. Yates, Ph.D., Executive Director, Guardian Scholars and Professor of Pyschology

Tuppett M. Yates, Ph.D.

Executive Director, Guardian Scholars and Professor of Psychology
Tel: (951) 827-4991

Dr. Yates received her undergraduate training in experimental psychology and neuroscience at Brown University. In 2005, she completed a joint doctoral degree in developmental psychopathology and clinical science at the Institute of Child Development of the University of Minnesota. In addition to her research with at-risk children and families, Dr. Yates spent nearly a decade in clinical practice with children, adults and families, including those in child protective services. Dr. Yates completed her clinical internship at the Cambridge Hospital of Harvard Medical School and a clinical, postdoctoral fellowship at the Stone Center of Wellesley College before joining the faculty in the Department of Psychology at UCR in 2006.

Dr. Yates’ research focuses on risk and resilience among adversity-exposed youth. Her research informs practice and policy to protect and enhance the resources and strengths in individuals, families and communities that enable children to succeed in the face of life’s many challenges. Dr. Yates founded Guardian Scholars in 2008. She is deeply committed to translating her research findings to enhance opportunities for foster youth and other vulnerable children.

Department Information
Office of Foster Youth Support Services
Office Hours:
Monday–Friday, 8 a.m.–5 p.m.
Phone: (951) 827-6545
3637 Canyon Crest Dr. #K101 Riverside, CA 92507


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