Dr. Jessica Lavariega Monforti strives for inclusive excellence as Vice Provost

Dr. Jessica Lavariega Monforti strives for inclusive excellence as Vice Provost

By Jordan Wehlage

On Jan. 10, Dr. Jessica Lavariega Monforti started in her new role as Vice Provost of CI. Before joining the CI community, she served as the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at California Lutheran University. According to her bio on CI’s website, “Lavariega Monforti holds a PhD and MA in Political Science from The Ohio State University and a BA in Political Science and Women’s Studies from Florida State University.” Lavariega Monforti’s role will “focus on GI (Graduation Initiative) 2025, accreditation and student success and equity,” areas which she explained will “touch just about every facet of the student experience.” 

The CI View had the opportunity to ask our new Vice Provost some questions about herself and her new position via an email interview. 

She explained some of the aspects of our University that drew her to become part of the Dolphin Pod: “I have been impressed with some of CI’s achievements, such as receiving the Seal of Excelencia and the recognition of the campus as one that improves the socio-economic realities of its graduates. As a first-generation, Pell-eligible student myself, these accomplishments spoke to me. I wanted to be a part of the good things that were happening here.” 

Lavariega Monforti has many years of experience working on “student success, closing equity gaps, and inclusive excellence” with several universities throughout her career. However, in college, she wanted to be a lawyer and “really did not even know what a dean or a vice provost was.” She hopes this might encourage current students who are unsure of what career would fit them best. 

Outside of work, Lavariega Monforti loves to listen to music and dance. Her playlist “might surprise folks,” ranging from artists such as Adele and Bad Bunny to Tupac, Grupo Firme and Queen. She grew up in New York and Florida, “surrounded by rap and hip hop, freestyle, reggaetón, salsa, bachata, and soul music.”  Music is also an important part of her family gatherings, since “just about everyone” in her family is musically inclined. 

We welcome Dr. Lavariega Monforti into the CI family and look forward to seeing her achievements as Vice Provost. She shared, “I am honored to be a part of the Dolphin Pod, and (am) excited to see where our collective work takes us!” 

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