Get to Know Your Associate Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs and Dean of the Center for Diversity and Inclusion, Dr. Mark Kamimura-Jiménez.


Written by: Lara Jennings, International Student & Scholar Advisor

We are eager to officially introduce and welcome our new Associate Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs and Dean of the Center for Diversity and Inclusion, Dr. Mark Kamimura-Jiménez (he/him/his) who oversees CDI, OISS, and the Office for Religious, Spiritual and Ethical Life here at WashU.

Prior to joining WashU on January 1, 2020, Mark served as Assistant Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs at Texas Christian University (TCU) in Fort Worth, TX. To say the least, his inaugural year dished out some major obstacles with the COVID-19 Crisis, campus shutdowns, ravel bans, along with several other major changes to immigration rules that directly impacted our students.

Through this trying time, OISS has been extremely grateful for his leadership and dedication to our international students at WashU. For this reason and more, we are thrilled to be properly introducing you to your Associate Vice Chancellor, Dr. Mark Kamimura-Jiménez.

Now that Mark has been in his position for 10 months, we asked him how he would describe his role in his own words. Mark responded, “In this role I get the opportunity to do several things that are important to supporting the undergraduate and graduate student experience.  The first is leading a team talented professionals within the Office of International Students and Scholars, Office of Religious, Spiritual and Ethical Life and the Center for Diversity and Inclusion….which includes developing and implementing diversity and inclusion initiatives” Further Mark stated, “a big part of my role is to listen to students, their voices and experiences on our campus and in their communities…understanding both the opportunities and challenges they face and work to address them with appropriate shifts in policy, practice and resources.”

We also wanted to know, what did Mark want us to know about him? Mark explained that he was from Los Angeles and talked about how he grew up in a mixed race family where almost everyone is from a different cultural, ethnic, racial and faith background. He explained that this diversity provided him a, “strong foundation and interest in others experiences that are different from my own.” He described his experience how “Every home had a few different rules. How I entered a home – take off your shoes, don’t take off your shoes; how we ate – with your hands, chopsticks, spoons, forks; how we dressed – collared shirt and pants or t-shirt, shorts and sandals; how we did or didn’t bless the food – pray, don’t pray; when and where we would gather – celebrate death, birth, anniversaries, holidays at church or a specific person’s house and at each of these gatherings we would celebrate in different ways, but in every space I always felt that I belonged.” Mark further explained, ”This is what I hope our international students can feel at WashU.  I know we come to this space with many different ways of engaging with each other, with different names and stories.  If there is one thing I want you to know about me is that I want you to feel and know that you belong here.”

And, when asked what he is looking forward to most as he settles into his new role, Mark described looking forward to getting to know students by their names and stories. He explained, “There are so many incredible students at WashU…Every time I meet a student I feel like I am getting the trailer to the next Netflix series and I want to learn more”. He went on to say, “Due to the ongoing pandemic, there are some students I have only met via Zoom…we check-in briefly, but the limitations of Zoom have significantly impacted the adhoc interactions and pre-meeting conversations we would typically have on campus. So, I am really looking forward to when we can all return to campus as a community.”

Connecting with Mark. Mark wants all our international students to know that once we are back on campus safely (post-pandemic), he can be found in the CDI (first floor, DUC). He explained, “If I am not in a meeting or working on a project, you will see my door open. If my door is open, then I am available to you.” He continued, “I may also be in the suite hanging out and so, you should feel welcome to come by without an appointment if you want to take a chance and catch me there.” He further explained that students are welcomed to set up appointments with him by emailing Sharon Chapman (, the Team Coordinator to help you connect with him. Mark emphasized, “No agenda required.”