Dr. Mitch Mitchell has been appointed Associate Vice President for Student Success and Dean of Students at Cal Poly Humboldt. He begins his tenure May 1, 2023.
Dr. Mitchell will lead student advocacy and support efforts and direct many services that promote inclusive student success. He will provide direction for key elements related to the student experience, including the Office of the Dean of Students, Student Access Services, and the Office of Student Life, as well as the Gutswurrak Student Activities Center, and the Cultural Centers for Academic Excellence (the Umoja Center for Pan African Excellence, El Centro Académico Cultural, and Indian Tribal & Educational Personnel Program).
“I'm excited to learn more about and collaboratively build upon Cal Poly Humboldt's rich legacy of student success,” Dr. Mitchell says. “Together we can continue to nurture and maximize a campus environment where students, faculty, and staff can grow, innovate, and thrive.”
With more than a decade of experience in higher education, Dr. Mitchell has been an administrator, educator, and advisor. He has created programs and initiatives to bolster students’ sense of belonging, development, and retention. In working with underrepresented or underserved populations, Dr. Mitchell has focused on issues that affect their success and persistence. He has overseen departments that support the academic success, and socio-emotional needs and overall well-being of a diverse array of students.
In his recent role as the Assistant Dean of Students & Case Manager for Winston Salem State University in North Carolina, Dr. Mitchell helped create a holistic approach to ensure student personal development and overall well-being for the campus community. He was previously the Director of Advising & Career Services at Umpqua Community College, and the Academic Counselor & Coordinator of L.E.A.F, a student leadership development program, at Goshen College. During his tenure at Goshen College, he served as the Associate Director of Community Life & Director of Intramural Sports and the Assistant Director of Residence Life, and taught courses on academic success, identity, and culture. He was also instrumental in creating institutional change to establish the inaugural position of Director of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion.
Dr. Mitchell holds a Ph.D. in Education with a focus on Leadership for Higher Education from Capella University, an M.A. in Communications from Regent University, and a B.S. in Business Administrations from Elizabeth City State University, a Historically Black College and University (HBCU).
“We are excited to welcome Dr. Mitchell to Cal Poly Humboldt. His commitment to student development and success were evident in the way he engaged with students during his campus visit,” says Chrissy Holliday, Vice President for Enrollment Management & Student Success. “His leadership will provide support and advocacy for the Student Success team, while taking our programming to the next level as a polytechnic university.”
Dr. Mitchell was born and raised in Washington, D.C.—a formative experience that he says shaped his view of the world and empathy for others. He gravitated to education and sports and developed a love of words. He credits his mother, an English teacher in D.C, for instilling the value and importance of an education. “In following in my mother’s footsteps, I was inspired to be an educator,” he says.
Dr. Mitchell enjoys cycling, snowboarding, kayaking, hiking and traveling. “The Pacific Northwest holds a special place in my heart, and I can’t wait to explore the beauty of Humboldt County,” Dr. Mitchell says.
He has a 15-year-old son, Jaiden A. Mitchell, a ninth grade honors student who aspires to be an engineer, and an older brother, Jai-Ahmal Mitchell who is an Educational Specialist for the D.C. government.