Nancy Gonzales soon to be University's next executive vice president and provost

Gonzales, an ASU dean, alumna and first-generation college student, will begin her new role July 1

Nancy Gonzales will be ASU's next executive vice president and provost beginning July 1, 2021, according to an email sent Tuesday from University President Michael Crow. 

Gonzales, an ASU alumna and first-generation college student, will fill current Provost Mark Searle's position next summer and will begin to work alongside him in preparation for her new role, the email said. Crow's email said her appointment must now be approved by the Arizona Board of Regents.

READ MORE: Provost Searle will step down, transition to professor June 2021

As executive vice president and provost, Gonzales will be responsible for engaging in day-to-day operations and developing projects that propel student and faculty success. She will also be responsible for "advancing academic excellence through the faculty recruitment, retention and renewal processes, and growing the quality, scope and scale of both campus immersion and online programs," Crow said in the email.

She is currently the dean of natural sciences, where she oversees a number of different schools and departments, including the School of Earth and Space Exploration, School of Life Sciences, School of Molecular Sciences, School of Mathematical and Statistical Sciences, the Department of Psychology and the Department of Physics, according to an ASU Now article.

Gonzales told ASU Now she is "the product of the right combination of opportunities," and she wants to provide the same conditions for ASU students. 

"I don't think it's a big mystery as to what individuals need to thrive in life," she told ASU Now. "But we need to find flexible ways to provide those opportunities for more of our students, and at times in life when they can benefit most."

She earned a bachelor's degree in psychology from ASU and went to the University of Washington to earn her master's degree and Ph.D. 

After finishing her education, Gonzales came back to ASU in 1992 as an assistant professor in psychology. Gonzales told ASU Now she has enjoyed participating in the University's transition to the "New American University and to see our mission expand beyond anything we had imagined before," she said.

According to the ASU Now article, Gonzales possesses a 25-year-long career in psychology with a focus on underrepresented communities in higher education. 

She has researched mental health and substance abuse as it relates to Latinx and other minority young adults and how the role of family and culture can influence educational success. 

Now, her research is housed at the Research and Education Advancing Children's Health Institute, which is funded by federal agencies and foundations and has generated more than $88 million in 20 years to support research for evidence-based prevention programs, according to ASU Now.

Gonzales "is a highly credentialed, well-respected leader among her peers who is a natural fit to be our next executive vice president and university provost," Crow told ASU Now. "As a first-generation college graduate, she is representative of so many of the students we currently serve and strive to serve more of."

Senior Reporter Wyatt Myskow contributed to the reporting of this article. 

Reach the reporter at and follow @piperjhansen on Twitter. 

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