About Gwen

An accomplished speaker, leader, and educator, Gwendolyn Jordan Dungy (she/her/hers) served as executive director of NASPA—Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education from 1995–2012. In her capacity as a national advocate for students and student affairs in higher education, she continues to serve as a higher education consultant and executive coach. 

While at NASPA, Dr. Dungy pursued a number of initiatives designed to enhance the association’s role in public policy, research, professional development, and student learning and assessment. She continues to have a particular interest in the readiness of colleges and universities for the returning student veteran and remains a champion of NASPA’s undergraduate mentoring program. In 2012, the summer leadership component of the NASPA Undergraduate Fellows Program was renamed the Dungy Leadership Institute in recognition of Dr. Dungy’s longtime support of this program.

Before joining NASPA, Dr. Dungy was associate director of the Curriculum and Faculty Development Network and coordinator of the National Diversity Network at the Association of American Colleges & Universities. Previously, she was a senior administrator at the County College of Morris (NJ), Montgomery College (MD), Catonsville Community College (MD), and a counseling faculty member at St. Louis Community College (MO).

Dr. Dungy’s primary interests since retirement have been to use her years of experience and continuous learning to deepen her understanding of leadership for change in a context of changing demographics and porous geographical boundaries. She works with colleagues in student affairs and academic affairs within the U.S. and internationally to review programs and services in order to increase their alignment with the mission and goals of their college or university, particularly in regard to student learning outcomes, career success, and diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Dr. Dungy has had extensive national and international travel to provide workshops for student affairs staff related to the professional competencies of the field. She has given speeches at conferences and meetings about student learning outcomes, new student populations, the co-curriculum redefined, first-generation and low-income college students, and innovation in higher education among other topics.

She served for several years as faculty for the Association of American Colleges and Universities’ (AAC&U) well-regarded High Impact Practices institutes and was a Senior Fellow at AAC&U in the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Student Success. She also served on the AAC&U Journal Advisory Board.

During academic year 2014-2015, Dr. Dungy assumed the role of interim senior vice president for Student Services at Montgomery College, the largest community college in the state of Maryland with 60,000 students. In her senior leadership role at Montgomery College, the college-wide deans responsible for enrollment, financial aid, recruitment, welcome centers, the ACES Program, student engagement, counseling and advising, disability services, veterans, TRIO, EOC, athletics and all other areas of support services for student success fell within her area of responsibility.

Dr. Dungy has served as a member of the Army Education Advisory Committee and as a member of the boards of directors of HEADS UP – A University Neighborhood Initiative in Washington, DC; the Association Mutual Health Insurance Company; the American Association of University Women’s Legal Advocacy Fund (AAUW); the AAUW Educational Foundation; the Morris Shelter and the Morris Museum, and as a trustee of Berkeley College in New York and New Jersey, and Gettysburg College in Pennsylvania.

Dr. Dungy is the author of a regular blog, The F.I.R.E. This Time, and numerous articles in books, journals, and magazines, and co-editor of several books in higher education, including the following:

Dr. Dungy initiated the oft-cited Learning Reconsidered: A Campus-Wide Focus on the Student Experience and coordinated and was a contributing author of Learning Reconsidered II: A Practical Guide to Implementing a Campus-Wide Focus on the Student Experience

A licensed psychologist and a board-certified professional counselor and career counselor, Dr. Dungy earned B.S. and M.S. degrees from Eastern Illinois University, an M.A. degree from Drew University in New Jersey, and a Ph.D. from Washington University in St. Louis. She has received honorary doctorate degrees from Gettysburg College, Berkeley College, Mitchell College, and Eastern Illinois University. In 2017, NASPA honored her as the inaugural recipient of the Bobby E. Leach Award for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, and as a Distinguished Pillar of the Profession in 2019.

updated March 2022

One response to “About Gwen

  1. Gwen,
    We met some years ago when I was active in NASPA and ACPA. Joan Kindle was my supervisor when I worked for Harper College, in Palatine, IL.

    Mary Lee Vance and I have co-edited a book on Disability Law and practices in higher education, to be published by AHEAD in 2023. We are wondering if you’d review it and write a short response for future readers. Thanks for considering this request.


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