Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs (VPSA)
What is the VPSA?
The Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs leads a comprehensive division of student affairs professionals committed to student success supporting the mission, vision, and values of GVSU. The VPSA office is the oversight and leadership that spearheads university initiatives partnered with the inner divisional departments to enhance the overall educational experience for the students and the Laker community.
Achiever, Adaptability, Self-Assurance, Maximizer, Relator
Jenny Hall-Jones, Vice President for Student Affairs
Email: [email protected]
“My visit to campus showed me that Grand Valley has an incredible dedication to students and to colleagues,” Hall-Jones said. “I was impressed by the questions asked of me at the community interview. They were around strategy and student well-being. Everyone asked about how we are going to support students. That told me a great deal about what motivates the people at GVSU. I saw great camaraderie with the team here. I see tremendous opportunity to both be mentored and to use my skill-set to help students and the division of Student Affairs to thrive.”
Dr. Jenny Hall-Jones currently serves as the Vice President for Student Affairs. Dr. Hall-Jones joined GVSU in February 2022, as the inaugural VP of Student Affairs. Dr. Hall-Jones is excited about the tremendous opportunity to both be mentored and to use her skill-set to help elevate student voices and thrive the division of Student Affairs.
Aaron Haight, Associate Vice President for Student Engagement and Dean Of Students
Email: [email protected]
Aaron Haight has worked with the students of GVSU since 2000. She currently serves as the Associate Vice President for Student Engagement and Dean of Students. Dr. Haight has served in the Dean of Students Office since 2013 as Associate Dean, Assistant Dean and Director of Student Conduct and Special Programs while also providing leadership for the Division of Student Affairs. Prior to the Dean of Students Office, Aaron was an assistant director in the Office of Student Life for 13 years working with orientation, student organizations and fraternity and sorority life.
Aaron graduated with her Bachelor of Applied Arts degree from Central Michigan University, her Master of Public Administration from Grand Valley State University, and her Doctor of Education from Eastern Michigan University. The title of her dissertation is “Examining the Impact of Student Involvement and Intercultural Experiences on Perceptions of Institutional Commitment to Diversity".
Aaron is also a facilitator of StrengthsQuest and True Colors. She consults with area K-12 schools in college access, hazing, and diversity initiatives. She is a past member of the Allendale Public Schools Board of Trustees, Allendale Rotary and volunteered with the Allendale PTO, Allendale Youth Soccer Organization, and Allendale Little League.
In her position as Associate Vice President and Dean of Students, Aaron leads the Dean of Students Office functions and team. She provides oversight, leadership and support to the Office of Student Conduct and Conflict Resolution, the Office of Student Life, the Promotions Office, and oversees the Division of Student Affairs crisis response, first-year experience initiatives, family programs, and divisional communication and marketing efforts.
Discipline, Responsibility, Consistency, Analytical, Relator
Achiever, Learner, Analytical, Relator, Restorative
Andy Beachnau, Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs
Email: [email protected]
Andy Beachnau is the Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs. In his current role, Andy is responsible for Housing and Residence Life, The Children’s Enrichment Center and assists with DSA leadership. Andy has been at Grand Valley State University for 40 years in a number of positions. He began his professional career at GVSU as a hall director in 1982 and became a residence life coordinator in 1984. In 1986, he became assistant director of housing and was later promoted to associate director of housing in 1990. After serving one year as acting director of housing and health services, he was hired as the director of housing and health services in 1995. In 2011 Andy was promoted to Associate Vice Provost for Student Affairs. Andy received his Bachelor of Arts from Alma College in 1982 in political science and physical education, his M.Ed. in education administration from Grand Valley State University in 1985, and his Ph.D. in 1995 from Michigan State University in college and university administration. He has taught graduate courses in the College of Education since 1995. Andy's wife Jacqueline (GVSU, 1987) is an RN at Spectrum Health. They live in Walker and have a daughter and son; Alexandra and Sean.
Favorite Quote: “Every student matters, and what you do matters to students.”
Kate Harmon, Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs, Well-being and Inclusion
Email: [email protected]
Kate Harmon currently serves as Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs with administrative oversight of the Campus Health Center, the University Counseling Center and Alcohol and Other Drugs Services, and the department of Recreation & Wellness. Kate became the Director of Campus Recreation in 2014 after working for twelve years overseeing day to day operations of the GVSU Recreation Center. Her work experience prior to GVSU included fitness and wellness promotion, personal training, group fitness instruction, and coaching soccer at youth and collegiate levels. In 2019, Kate's role increased with the oversight of the Campus Health Center and various student health initiatives. Kate has additional experience in emergency and risk management, facility management, and advocacy for low-income and underrepresented students.
Kate earned her Doctor of Education specializing in Educational Leadership from University of Michigan-Flint in 2022. She earned her Master's degree in Sports Administration from Central Michigan University in 2000 after completing a Bachelor's degree in Sports Science from Northern Michigan University in 1998. At NMU she was a student-athlete and captain of the varsity soccer team. In 2019, Kate received her Educational Specialist in Leadership degree from GVSU. When she is not at work, you will find her spending time with her family enjoying the outdoors. She currently serves on the Ottawa County Parks and Recreation Commission.
Strategic, Relator, Achiever, Arranger, Responsibility
Communication, Developer, Empathy, Positivity, Consistency
Alisha Davis, Assistant Vice President for the Social Justice Centers & Director of Office of Multicultural Affairs
Email: [email protected]
Dr. Alisha Davis began working at Grand Valley State University (GVSU) in 2009. She currently serves as the Assistant Vice President for the Social Justice Centers and Director of the Office of Multicultural Affairs. In her previous roles, she was an associate professor and program director in the Allied Health Sciences program. Alisha serves and/or has served on several university committees centered around diversity, equity, and inclusion, student retention, faculty governance, faculty development, college personnel, and strategic planning. She also works with other programs that focus on underrepresented minority students and faculty/staff on campus, and is on the leadership team for the Black Faculty and Staff Association, as well as part of the acceleration and accountability leadership team for the Network of Advisors for Racial Equity, which is a GVSU president’s initiative. In April of 2023, Dr. Davis completed a presidential fellowship in inclusion and equity at the university, which centered on university initiatives pertaining to inclusion, diversity, equity, and access. Additionally, she is on NCOREs National Advisory Council and is the chair of the Faculty Interest and Needs committee, as well as serves as a board member for Catherine’s Health Center, and Comprehensive Therapy Center. She holds a Ph.D. in Educational Leadership with a higher education emphasis from Western Michigan University.
Prior to coming to GVSU, Dr. Davis worked in healthcare for over a decade focusing on quality improvement, population health management, DEI, healthcare disparities, health literacy, and healthcare marketing and communications.
Shontaye M. Witcher, Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs, Disability Support Resources
Email: [email protected]
Dr. Shontaye Witcher has worked at GVSU since 2009. She believes that a successful college transition starts with preparation. Dr. Witcher served in the Division of Inclusion and Equity for 15 years in the Department of Disability Support Recourses as the Assistant, Associate, Director, and Assistant Vice President until 2023. She currently serves as the Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs with administrative oversight of Disability Support Resources and ADA Compliance.
Dr. Witcher graduated with her Associate in Arts degree from Muskegon Community College, her Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from Michigan State University (MSU), her Master of Social Work and Urban Studies degree from MSU, her Educational Specialist in Leadership from GVSU, and her Doctorate of Philosophy in Educational Leadership from Eastern Michigan University. The title of Dr. Witcher’s dissertation is “Higher Education Disability Professionals Perceptions on Transition Processes for College Freshmen with Autism Spectrum Disorders”. Dr. Witcher has vast experience from learning institutions related to disabilities, transitional barriers, and support resources for fostering and encouraging independent learning.
Outside of the Grand Valley State University (GVSU) community, Dr. Witcher holds memberships on committees such as the Michigan Association on Higher Education and Disability (MI AHEAD), the Board of Directors for the Lakeshore Ethnic Diversity Alliance (LEDA), Disability Advocates of Kent County (DAKC), and Best Financial Credit Union. She is a proud Alpha Kappa Alpha, Inc. (AKA) member.
Input, Strategic, Arranger, Learner,
Empathy, Adaptability, Positivity, Developer, Woo (Influencer)
Takeelia Garrett, Student Ombuds Officer
Email: [email protected]
Takeelia Garrett is a true Laker for a Lifetime! In 2005 she came back to her beloved alma mater to work in Housing and Residence Life as an Assistant Director. She was in Housing and Residence Life until 2016 when she became the first Student Ombuds at GVSU. While she enjoyed her time in Housing and Residence Life, Takeelia enjoys working with students on a deeper level. Her career in student housing has spanned 20 years.
Prior to coming back to GVSU in 2005, Takeelia worked at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor as a Hall Director in Mosher-Jordan Hall, the University of Toledo, GVSU as a hall director, and Ferris State University. Takeelia graduated from Grand Valley State University with a Bachelor’s degree in International Relations and Political Science with a minor in Sociology (1996) and a Master’s degree in Education, College Student Affairs Leadership (CSAL).
Takeelia loves to spend her free time with her son, Jermarrio, family and friends. She has been trained in DEI (Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion) work, is trained in restorative justice circle facilitation, and is a trained mediator. Takeelia is a proud member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. and is passionate about her work with students. She wants to see students graduate as Lakers and works with them to make that happen. Takeelia sees the Student Ombuds role as an integral part of the GVSU community as a resource and a private place to seek assistance.
One of her favorite quotes is by Mary Kay Ash, "Everyone has an invisible sign hanging from their neck saying, 'Make me feel important.' Never forget this message when working with people." Everyone is important and deserves to be treated as such.
Executive and Professional Administration
Photos Coming Soon
DSALT (Division of Student Affairs Leadership Team)
|First Name||Last Name||Title||Website||Action|
|Andy||Beachnau||Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs||Division of Student Affairs||View|
|Kyle||Boone||Director, Housing and Residence Life||Housing and Residence Life||View|
|Robin||Burris||Executive Assistant to the VPSA||Division of Student Affairs||View|
|Alisha||Davis||Assistant Vice President for the Social Justice Centers and Director of the Office of Multicultural Affairs, Associate Professor||Office of Multicultural Affairs||View|
|Emily||First||Assistant Dean of Students||Dean of Students Office||View|
|Abigail (Abbe)||Forbes||Director of Budget and Financial Planning - Student Affairs||Division of Student Affairs||View|
|Takeelia||Garrett||Student Ombuds||Student Ombuds||View|
|Valerie||Guzman||Director of Student Life||Office of Student Life||View|
|Andrew||Haggerty||Director of First Year, Parent and Supporter Programs||Dean of Students Office||View|
|Aaron||Haight||Associate Vice President For Student Engagement And Dean Of Students||Dean of Students Office||View|
|Jenny||Hall-Jones||Vice President for Student Affairs||Division of Student Affairs||View|
|Kate||Harmon||Assistant Vice President for Well-being and Inclusion||Division of Student Affairs||View|
|Jessica||Jennrich||Director Center for Women & Gender Equity, Social Justice Specialist||Gayle R. Davis Center for Women and Gender Equity||View|
|Edward A.||Jones II||Director of Student Health Services||Student Health Services||View|
|DL||McKinney||Director, Milton E. Ford LGBT Resource Center||Milton E. Ford LGBT Resource Center||View|
|Aaron||Mowen||Director, Recreation and Student Wellness||Recreation & Wellness||View|
|Amber||Roberts||Director, University Counseling Center||University Counseling Center||View|
|Shane||Scherer||Director, Military & Veterans Resource Center||Peter Secchia Military and Veterans Resource Center||View|
|Susan||Sigler||Administrative Assistant||Dean of Students Office||View|
|Daphnea||Sutherland||Director, Children's Enrichment Center||Children's Enrichment Center||View|
|Megan||Wierenga||Laker Events and Communications Manager||Office of Student Life||View|
|Shontaye M.||Witcher||Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs, Disability Support Resources||Disability Support Resources||View|
|Ben||Witt||Director of the Office of Student Conduct and Conflict Resolution||Office of Student Conduct and Conflict Resolution||View|