Jennifer Gomez-Chavez

Jennifer Gomez-Chavez, Vice President for Institutional Engagement, Excelencia in Education

Jennifer Gomez-Chavez

Vice President for Institutional Engagement

Current Position:
Jennifer supports the advancement of institutional transformation to intentionally serve Latino students through engaging with institutions and their leaders to connect them to Excelencia’s programs, services, resources and research. She facilitates a network of affiliates through outreach strategies, engaging them in learning communities, keeping them informed about policy issues, and ensuring that they receive support to advance their efforts. 
Portfolio includes:  Presidents for Latino Student Success, Affiliate Engagement in the network, Policy, Liaison for Institutional programs and practitioners, and Liaison for Emerging HSIs.

Past Experiences:
Jennifer Gomez-Chavez is a native New Mexican born and raised in Hagerman, a small rural farming community.  Jennifer has 30 years of experience working with low-income, and students from underrepresented backgrounds through her positions with the LULAC National Educational Service Center and the University of New Mexico (UNM) in Albuquerque. She holds a B.A. in Criminal Justice, a Master’s in Counseling, and a Doctorate in Educational Leadership. Jennifer retired from the University of New Mexico where she spent 27 years in various roles that include: Special Assistant to the Associate Vice Chancellor for the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at UNM Health Sciences Center and main campus, Executive Director of the Unidos Project, Central Region Director for ENLACE New Mexico, Director of Collective Impact Initiatives and an adjunct faculty member. She led the first Title V grant at UNM main campus and was named as the inaugural Director of Student Success for the university.

Why are you bringing your talent to Excelencia?
My passion has been focused on the success of students, particularly those from underrepresented backgrounds, first generation, low-income and rural communities which is aligned to Excelencia's mission and goals. I believe in the critical work that Excelencia has been undergoing for the last 18 years, and I want to be part of transforming institutions. My hope is to help institutions transform to be "student ready" and educate and empower the present and future generations of Latino students to dream big and achieve their highest goals.

How would you describe working at Excelencia?
It is exciting to be working for an organization that is leading nationally on Latino student success. I feel honored to be part of an incredible team that is committed to building a national movement based on data, practice and leadership to transform higher education institutions and support practitioners in their efforts to accelerate Latino student success.

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