Philomena V. Mantella is the first woman and the fifth president to lead Grand Valley State University (GVSU).
Mantella’s career in higher education is marked by her significant success in propelling universities to new markets, expanded relationships, and countless program innovations. Her strategic plan and vision for GVSU, Reach Higher 2025, positions the university to address the challenges of our time with an eye on relevance and growth amid disruption. During her tenure, GVSU enrolled the most diverse class in its history.
Mantella also founded the REP4, a growing alliance with other public colleges and universities nationwide to use student voices to improve pathways to graduation and bring student insights forward in institutional transformation. She is deeply committed to partnerships and collaborations that lead to accelerated improvement in outcomes for students and that assure Michigan has the necessary talent to drive its knowledge economy.
Mantella earned a Ph.D. in college and university administration from Michigan State University and a master’s and bachelor’s degree from Syracuse University.