Ha Nguyen named Vice President of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion
By GRC President Suzanne M. Johnson, July 12, 2022
Dear Green River College Community,
I am pleased to announce that Ha Nguyen has accepted the position of Vice President of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion for our College.
Ha has over twenty years of experience in Washington State’s community and technical college (CTC) system and is fiercely dedicated to ensuring equitable access and supports for our students of color and other systemically minoritized students. She is also a Vietnamese refugee whose family was part of the first wave of Vietnamese Boat People, joining the thousands of families who fled by sea seeking refuge following the collapse of the South Vietnamese government in 1975. Her childhood memories include her mother’s stories of their escape (praying for her children’s survival and splitting rations of rice with other people on the boat) and talking enduringly about the importance of higher education.
Prior to her role as the new Vice President of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) with Green River College, Ha was appointed to serve as the inaugural Director of EDI at the Washington State Board for Community & Technical Colleges (SBCTC), where she established the agency’s first EDI department; served as a founding member and chair of the EDI committee; led legislative efforts to secure investments for EDI efforts across the college system; and helped to launch a collaboration between diversity and equity officers within Washington State’s higher education sector.
In addition, Ha served as a policy associate in student services and basic education for adults at SBCTC, providing technical guidance and support in the areas of financial aid, multicultural student services, student leadership, and transitional studies for multiple council groups across the CTC system. She also served as a tenured faculty counselor and instructor at Renton Technical College (RTC) where she developed contextualized curriculum for online and face-to-face delivery of College Success courses; consulted with faculty and staff regarding EDI topics; and co-chaired RTC’s Diversity and Equity Council, resulting in increased awareness for equity-minded changes at the college.
Ha is a proud graduate of Wenatchee Valley College where she managed full-time college studies while working at her family’s small Vietnamese restaurant. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Central Washington University, a Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology from Saint Martin’s University and completed doctoral classes at Seattle University in Higher Educational Leadership with an emphasis on Student Development.
I want to thank the VP of EDI search committee for their considerable time and work in this search process, and all the faculty, staff, administrators and students who participated in the VP of EDI campus visits and provided feedback for my consideration.
Ha will join Green River College on August 16, 2022. Please help me welcome and congratulate Ha!