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Gonzales retires as Vice President of Student Affairs

Effective November 15, 2021, Dr. Mary Jo Gonzales, who has been on leave since September 1, will retire from her position as Vice President of Student Affairs. 

Dr. Gonzales began serving as Vice President in 2017. A passionate Coug, alumna, first-generation and low-income college student, Dr. Gonzales is known as a fierce advocate for students. Her legacy includes securing external funding for La Bienvenida, a Spanish language orientation program for future Cougs and their families, hiring the University’s inaugural director of first-generation programs, and serving as the institutional sponsor for Tri-Alpha Honor Society for first-generation college students, staff, and faculty. 

Dr. Gonzales provided generous support to Cougs Feeding Cougs and helped lead development efforts for the Student Emergency Fund. She supported and empowered Cougar Health Services to provide gender-affirming and inclusive health care. By leading efforts to respond to student concerns through the Campus Culture and Climate Initiative launched in 2017, Dr. Gonzales helped set a firm foundation for the WSU System’s current strategies and vision of equity and inclusion for students, faculty, and staff. 

On the Pullman campus, Dr. Gonzales led 22 departments with over 500 staff in the Division of Student Affairs. Demonstrating her commitment to shared governance, Dr. Gonzales ensured that students had access to leadership and opportunities to inform University decisions. 

“I want to thank Dr. Gonzales for her service to our Cougar community,” said WSU President Kirk Schulz. “We wish her the best in her future endeavors.”

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