Office of the Dean of Students announces three new leaders

January 24, 2021

The Office of the Dean of Students, in the Division of Student and Campus Life, has announced three new staff members, two joining the Diversity and Inclusion team and one joining the Care and Crisis Services team.

The additions come on the heels of the launch of the Multicultural Student Leadership and Empowerment (MSL&E) program, expanding upon the work of Student Development and Diversity Initiatives. Its mission is to encourage student learning through co-curricular activities, and foster an inclusive campus environment.

Christian Abigail Gonzalez joins the Dean of Students’ Diversity and Inclusion team as associate director for student empowerment and undocumented/DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) student support. Jarvis Marlow-McCowin also joins the Diversity and Inclusion team as associate director for multicultural student leadership and empowerment.

And Danielle Haynes joins the Care and Crisis Services team as the associate dean of students for conflict coaching and case management.

“I am thrilled to have Danielle, Christian and Jarvis as our newest team members,” said Marla Love, the Robert W. and Elizabeth C. Staley Interim Dean of Students. “Their experiences demonstrate a commitment to equity, student development and student care. I am eager for students to experience their dedication to furthering transformational learning in the co-curricular, and guiding students toward greater resiliency and engagement in the classroom and areas of passion and purpose.”

Gonzalez will lead initiatives and work collaboratively to support undocumented and DACA students, advise the DREAM Team – a student organization and support network for undocumented students on campus – and support first-generation and low-income student initiatives.

“I am very excited to be joining Cornell to serve our undocumented student population, a student population that I love and care so deeply about,” Gonzalez said. “It is so important for undocumented students to have a strong community and support system on a college campus.”

Gonzalez came to Cornell from the University of California, San Diego, where she served as a coordinator of undocumented student services. She received her master’s degree in higher education administration and leadership from Adams State University.

Marlow-McCowin will lead initiatives and work collaboratively to support Black males and other underrepresented student populations; advise several student organizations; and implement intercultural and intersectional co-curricular programs.

“It is my hope that Jarvis and Patricia Gonzalez, assistant director for MSL&E, will serve as empowering resources and advocates for students,” said Shakima Clency, the Peggy J. Koenig ’78 Associate Dean of Students for Student Empowerment, and director of first-generation and low-income student support. “We do this through supporting multicultural student organizations, promoting peer to peer mentorship, and a focus on identity conscious leadership development and initiatives to support Black males.”

Since launching this fall, Multicultural Student Leadership and Empowerment has partnered with departments across campus to engage stakeholders in inclusive and diverse dialogue that centers on the unique experiences of BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and other people of color) students.

“The campus climate is influenced by all members of the Cornell community, including faculty, students, staff, alumni and members of the Ithaca community,” Clency said. “Students experience different spheres of Cornell based on the intersection of their identities and lived experience. We are striving to improve greater access, equitable opportunities, and inclusion within their academic and social spaces.”

Marlow-McCowin most recently was coordinator of inclusion at Hartwick College in Oneonta, New York. He has also served as the assistant director of the Multicultural Center at the State University of New York, Delhi.

“I am overjoyed to join the SCL team and work diligently to implement a comprehensive program that will enhance the academic, personal, social success of Black male students at Cornell,” Marlow-McCowin said.

He received a master’s degree in educational policy and leadership studies, with a concentration in higher education and student affairs, from the University of Iowa. He is pursuing a Ph.D. in community research and action from Binghamton University.

Haynes will design a conflict coaching program that will improve conflict management skills of students and those who advise them. The program will use outreach and training to provide a community-wide understanding of conflict, as well as conflict coaching to help colleagues resolve challenging situations with groups they lead, and offer interventions for group conflicts, with priority given to disputes involving identity issues.

Haynes will also co-chair the Bias Assessment and Review Team with Greta Kenney, associate dean of students and director of the Women’s Resource Center.

“I am excited about this role and opportunity because this is a perfect time to promote and perfect the art of transformative communication,” Haynes said. “The current political and racial climate has created divisiveness in our country. … Conflict coaching will teach individuals how to effectively navigate uncomfortable conversations and spaces, and challenge racism and other inequalities.”

“Danielle’s work as a core member of our team will provide ongoing support to students in crisis, a role particularly needed as our campus continues to address the impact of the pandemic and implements the recommendations of the mental health review,” said Mary Beth Grant, senior associate dean of students and director of Care and Crisis Services.

Haynes previously served as a legislative aid for the Ohio Legislative Black Caucus, an advocate for survivor services and the coordinator of student case management for Bowling Green State University. She received her master’s degree in global international relations from Webster University.

Visit the Office of the Dean of Students online to connect with these and other support areas within the office.

This article originally appeared in the Cornell Chronicle.