As you may know, Dr. Melissa Vito will be stepping away from her role as Senior Vice President for Student Affairs, Enrollment Management and Strategic Initiatives and will be moving into the private sector effective July 1, staying active in higher education outreach and advocacy. I would like you to join me in thanking her for her years of service to the University of Arizona and its students. The entire campus community is invited to attend an open house in her honor today, beginning at 3:30 p.m. in the Student Union Memorial Center North Ballroom.
No matter the conversation or issue, Dr. Vito's guiding principle has been how will this decision impact our students? She is widely known to be an innovator and leader in higher education and, specifically, student success. Her career has been marked by tremendous accomplishments, including:
Bringing the UA to a global audience with UA Online, the Office of Digital Learning, and our distance locations around the world.
Welcoming the largest, most diverse classes in school history and paving the way for the University’s Hispanic Serving Institution status.
Envisioning and realizing student experiences through 100% Engagement.
Rebuilding the Student Union Memorial Center and BookStores and constructing new residence halls.
Kicking off one of the nation’s first campus climate surveys.
Creating the Think Tank, the University’s first fully centralized academic support program.
Focusing on the student wellness experience with our nationally recognized health and recreation services.
Reimagining our campus core with the forthcoming Student Success District.
Supporting student veterans and ensuring that the UA was one of the first institutions in the country to receive federal support for a veterans center, even testifying before Congress on this issue.
Inviting students to the table to discuss fees and tuition. This year, that student voice boosted support and resources for programs such as mental health services, financial aid and academic advising.
In addition to her track record of success, Dr. Vito has been recognized as a Tucson 40-Under-40 Mentor of the Year. She was also named a Pillar of the Profession by the National Association of Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education and earned the National Excellence in Practice Award from the American College Personnel Association.
Going forward, the Student Affairs and Enrollment Management, Academic Initiatives and Student Success portfolio will report through Jeff Goldberg as he continues as Acting Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs & Provost.
On behalf of the entire institution, I would like to personally thank Dr. Vito for her years of dedication to the University and to our students. Her innovative and entrepreneurial spirit have been evident since I arrived on this campus and I wish her all the best in her future pursuits. In every sense, she has been instrumental in shaping the University we enjoy today.
Robert C. Robbins
The University of Arizona