Provost José L. Cruz
José L. Cruz became provost and vice president for academic affairs of California State University, Fullerton in December 2012.
Previously, he served as vice president of higher education policy and practice at The Education Trust in Washington, D.C. He is a former vice president for student affairs of the University of Puerto Rico system and served as chair of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department and dean of academic affairs at the University of Puerto Rico-Mayagüez.
At The Education Trust, Dr. Cruz oversaw the national Access to Success Initiative (22 public university systems, 312 campuses, 3.5 million students) and was involved in separate efforts to regulate the for-profit college industry and to protect the Federal Pell Grant Program.
At the University of Puerto Rico System Office, Dr. Cruz oversaw admissions, financial aid, academic records, international programs, and student life programs for the 11 campus, 65,000 student system. He also served as UPR's coordinator for strategic planning and cofounded Puerto Rico's K-16 Council.
Dr. Cruz earned a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from the University of Puerto Rico-Mayagüez and master's and doctorate degrees in electrical engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology. He financed his education with the aid of Pell grants, student loans, assistantships, fellowships, and work.
Dr. Cruz is fluent in English and Spanish and has published extensively in international scientific journals and for technical conferences. His work has been funded by the National Science Foundation, the United States Education Department, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Kresge Foundation, Lumina Foundation, and various corporations, among others.
Dr. Cruz is a senior member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and a National Science Foundation Career Award recipient. Active in industry, he is a patented inventor.
Dr. Cruz serves on the The Education Trust's Board of Directors and on Univision's Es El Momento Advisory Board. He is a frequent keynote speaker and writer on higher educational issues and has testified before the U.S. Congress. His work has been covered by regional, state, and national print, online, and broadcast media outlets, including The Washington Post, The New York Times, Boston Globe, Huffington Post, The Chronicle of Higher Education, Inside Higher Ed, CNN, and Univision.