Graduation Initiative

2021-2022 Graduation Initiative Advisory Team

Executive Leadership
Debra S. Larson, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs
Thomas Rios, Interim Vice President for Student Affairs

Co-Chairs (selected from committee membership)
Provost’s Designee (2021-2022: Kate McCarthy, Dean of Undergraduate Education)
Vice President for Student Affairs’ Designee (2021-2022: Kaitlyn Baumgartner Lee, Assistant Vice President for University Advisement)


Academic Leadership
Kate McCarthy, Dean, Undergraduate Education (Co-Chair)
Marianne Paiva, Chair of the Academic Senate

Enrollment Management and Business Processes
Michael Dills-Allen, University Registrar
Kentiner David, Designee to Director, Financial Aid and Scholarships
Anna Magaña, Director, Student Financial Services

University Diversity Committee (selected by the University Diversity Committee, two members, may serve as both the UDC rep and in another role on the Team)
Michelle Morris, Interim Chief Diversity Officer, Office of Diversity and Inclusion
Teresita Curiel, Director, Latinx Equity and Success, UDC Representative

Academic Advising
Kaitlyn Baumgartner Lee, Assistant Vice President for University Advisement (Co-Chair)
Kylee Sharp, College Advising and Retention Specialist

Faculty (appointed by college chairs)
Celina Phillips, College of Agriculture
Holly Nevarez, College of Behavioral and Social Sciences
Mitch Casselman, College of Business
(vacant), College of Communication and Education
Zahrasalat Alavi, College of Engineering, Computer Science, and Construction Management
Erin Kelly, College of Humanities and Fine Arts
Jeff Bell, College of Natural Sciences
William Cuthbertson, Meriam Library

Academic Dean (appointed by the Provost)
Blake Wentz, Dean, College of Engineering, Computer Science, and Construction Management

Student Life
Mary Wallmark, Director, Student Life and Leadership
Shawn Ryan, Program Coordinator, Orientation and New Student Programs, Student Life and Leadership

Academic Support and Innovation
Sue Peterson, Director, First-Year Experience program
Chiara Ferrari, Director, Faculty Development
Dawn Frank, Director, Student Learning Center
Cecilia Santillan-Robles, Director, Early Outreach and Support Programs
Darnell Lee, Chico Student Success Center Representative

Technology and Data
Kathy Fernandez, Academic Technology Officer
Thomas Rosenow, Interim Director of Institutional Research
David Rowe, Director of Enterprise Applications

Two Students (appointed by VPSA)

Administrative Support
Jessie Mendoza, Administrative Analyst/Specialist, Undergraduate Education
Brandi Aranguren, Manager, Strategic Initiatives & External Resources

Steering Committee

A Steering Committee shall be established from the membership of the GI Advisory Team. The Steering Committee shall be comprised of nine members: the Advisory Team co-chairs, the Academic Senate Chair, the Director of Faculty Development, two additional representatives from Student Affairs, and one additional representative from Academic Affairs, and two students.

Members of the Steering Committee shall serve two-year terms. The Steering Committee sets meeting agendas based on the Team’s review of the campus plan and relevant data. The Steering Committee also makes recommendations for the strategic allocation of GI 2025 resources. See the “Resource Allocation” page for more information.

Work Groups 2020-2021

Subcommittees, working groups, and task forces may be formed as needed to accomplish specific goals. Active work groups can be seen here.(opens in new window)