Dr. Mary A. Papazian, a seasoned leader with nearly 30 years of experience as a university professor, academic and administrative leader, joined San Jose State University as its 30th president on July 1, 2016. As the leader of the founding campus of the California State University and Silicon Valley’s only public university, Papazian — a Southern California native — is firmly committed to student success; open, transparent and inclusive leadership; fostering a culture of curiosity and discovery; and building enduring campus and community partnerships. Before coming to SJSU, Papazian was president of Southern Connecticut State University in New Haven, Connecticut. There, her accomplishments included strengthening programs supporting the successful transition of first-year and transfer students; establishing a vision for what will be SCSU’s first-ever comprehensive philanthropic campaign and securing a $3 million gift and a $1.2 million bequest to establish its first endowed chair; opening the new Academic Laboratory and Science Building; expanding international education and study abroad programs; increasing research opportunities for undergraduate students, and expanding scholarships to support student recruitment, retention, and completion. Papazian holds bachelor’s, master's and doctoral degrees in English from the University of California, Los Angeles. She and husband Dr. Dennis R. Papazian, founding director of the Armenian Research Center at the University of Michigan, Dearborn, have two adult daughters. Papazian is actively engaged in national and regional volunteer leadership, serving on the boards of Higher Education Resource Services, Association of American Colleges and Universities, Bay Area Council, Silicon Valley Leadership Group and Joint Venture Silicon Valley.
Dr. Mary A. Papazian
Member of the Board