The provost and vice president for academic affairs at Cal Poly Pomona was Tuesday named the California State University system’s executive vice chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs.
CSU Chancellor Joseph I. Castro said Sylvia A. Alva will assume her new role on Aug. 2.
“As an alumna of the CSU, Dr. Alva understands and embraces the transformative power of a CSU degree, and she possesses extensive knowledge of the university earned through her distinguished service as a professor, dean and provost at three campuses,” Castro said. “She brings to the Chancellor’s Office a deep understanding of and passion for the success of students from all backgrounds.”
Alva said she was “humbled by this extraordinary opportunity to take a new leadership role with the institution that has given so much to me and my family and to provide similar, life-changing opportunities for all Californians.”
In her role as provost at Cal Poly Pomona, Alva leads the strategic and academic direction of the campus’ Division of Academic Affairs. She also holds a faculty appointment in the Psychology Department.
Alva began her career in higher education as an assistant professor of child and adolescent development before being promoted to associate professor and professor at Cal State Fullerton, where she served in a number of administrative roles, including educational equity coordinator for CSUF’s College of Health and Human Development and then as associate vice president for undergraduate programs.
Alva then went to Cal State Northridge, where she served as dean of the College of Health and Human Development before assuming her current role at Cal Poly Pomona.
Alva is a first-generation college graduate who earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Cal State Los Angeles. She went on to obtain a master’s degree and a doctorate, both in psychology, from UCLA.
CSU is the largest system of four-year higher education in the country, with 23 campuses, 56,000 faculty and staff and 486,000 students. Half of the CSU’s students transfer from California community colleges.