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WSU Spokane appoints Peter Gitau vice chancellor of student affairs

Closeup of Peter Gitau
Peter Gitau

Peter Gitau will serve as the new vice chancellor of student affairs, student health, and equity, diversity, and inclusion at Washington State University’s Spokane campus. 

Gitau will lead the campus’ student affairs office, including admissions, financial aid, support services, and student-centered programming for approximately 1,400 students in Spokane and Yakima. He will also be responsible for partnering with leaders across the health sciences colleges and throughout the WSU system to support and improve the student experience. Additionally, he will be responsible for actively engaging and leading efforts to support health equity, diversity, and inclusion for health science students and collaborating with the vice chancellor of academic affairs in areas that impact faculty and staff.

“I am pleased to welcome Dr. Gitau to WSU Spokane,” said Daryll DeWald, chancellor for WSU Spokane and executive vice president for WSU Health Sciences. “Dr. Gitau’s wealth of experience as a collaborator and builder in higher education makes him a welcome addition to our Health Sciences leadership team.” 

With over 20 years of experience in higher education, Gitau was most recently the vice president for student services at Butte-Glenn Community College in Oroville, California, where he provided leadership that reversed the college’s 10-year enrollment decline. He has also held executive leadership positions at Utah Technical University, Northern Kentucky University, and Southern Illinois University, where he supervised comprehensive student affairs departments, managed complex capital projects, and developed cross-divisional enrollment and student success initiatives.

Born and raised in Kenya, Gitau received his bachelor’s degree in secondary education from Kenyatta University in Nairobi, Kenya. As an international student, he earned a master’s degree in educational administration from Eastern Illinois University and a doctoral degree in higher education administration from the University of Kansas.

In addition to his academic career, Gitau is the founder and president of the African International Foundation for Educational Excellence (AIFEE), a non-profit organization with service-learning sites and community development initiatives in sub-Saharan Africa. In this role, Gitau has facilitated the international engagement of hundreds of students, faculty, staff, and community members. He is also the founder of Diversity and Leadership International (DLI), a professional consultancy. 

“WSU is a  dynamic, globally engaged, student-centered institution with many opportunities to make a difference,” said Gitau.  “I am excited to be joining an incredible team of colleagues with a passion for seeing every student succeed.”

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