McMahon has been at Roger Williams University for more than 11 years. | Alexa Bruington/Mustang News

Kathleen McMahon has been hired as Cal Poly’s new Dean of Students and Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs. She will replace current Dean of Students Jean DeCosta, who announced her retirement earlier this year, according to a press release from the university.

Her tenure at Cal Poly will officially begin in February, while DeCosta — who has served as Dean of Students for 12 years — will retire this fall. Student Affairs will announce an interim leadership plan shortly, according to the release.

“We are thrilled to welcome Kathleen to the Cal Poly community,” Vice President for Student Affairs Keith Humphrey said in the release. “Kathleen brings a wealth of knowledge, leadership and higher education experience, and she shares our passion for supporting student success.”

McMahon is currently the associate vice president for student life and Title IX coordinator for Roger Williams University in Rhode Island, and has been with the university for more than 11 years. Previously, she was the dean of students at Marlboro College and spent seven years as the associate dean of students at University of California, Los Angeles. 

Neither Roger Williams University nor Marlboro College have greek life — which will be one of McMahon’s responsibilities as Cal Poly’s Dean of Students. 

In addition to greek life, the Dean of Students Office encompasses the Center for Leadership and Service, Cross Cultural Centers, Center for Service In Action, student clubs, Safer, Student Rights and Responsibilities and club sports. 

“I am enamored with the Cal Poly community — the Learn by Doing that is in the fabric of all that happens here and the student-centered ethos that every community member exudes,” McMahon said in the release. “It’s an honor to join the Mustang family and be part of a team that cares so much about their students’ success and wellbeing.” 

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