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P & A Council Members

Professional & Administrative (P&A) employees that are members of the Council are listed below.  The role of the P&A Council is to provide feedback and offer insight from a P&A's perspective on a wide variety of information and university matters shared with the Council. 

Thad Dickinson, Chair

  • Position: Distance Librarian
  • Department: Library Research & Instruction Services 
  • Email:

Thad (he/him/his) has been a Distance Librarian with CMU since August 2006. He was based at the Atlanta Metro Center until 2019 and is now based at the Troy (MI) Center, where he is the designated librarian for the Metro Detroit and Greater Michigan centers. Thad specializes in providing reference, research, and instructional assistance to students enrolled in off-campus and online classes, with a focus on the Master of Science in Administration (MSA) program. Prior to joining the CMU Libraries, Thad was a librarian at Cornell University, Loyola University Chicago, and the University of Texas at Austin. He received an M.A. in Learning, Design, and Technology from CMU; M.S. in Library and Information Science from the University of Texas at Austin; and a B.A. in English Literature from the University of Colorado at Boulder. He also earned a Graduate Certificate in College Teaching from CMU.

Brittnie Vithanage, Vice-Chair

  • Position: Assistant Director/Residence Life
  • Department: Residence Life
  • Email:

Brittnie Vithanage (she/her) currently serves as an Assistant Director for the Office of Residence Life.  Specifically, Brittnie works with the Towers and Northwest Apartment communities.  Before CMU, Brittnie worked as a Community Director for Residence Life at the University of Oregon and at Michigan State University.  Brittnie earned her bachelor's degree in Sociology from SUNY Cortland and then moved to Michigan State University where she earned her master's degree in Student Affairs Administration.

In addition to her daily work as an Assistant Director for the Office of Residence Life, Brittnie is also connected to national professional organizations, such as ACPA and the Mid-Level Community of Practice.  Brittnie's long term goal is to earn her doctorate in Educational Leadership - Higher Education with a dual focus on Institutional and Organizational Psychology.  Her passion lies in advocating for staff in higher education and in creating sustainable structures of development, challenge, and support from a human resources lens.

Throughout Brittnie's career in higher education, she has served on a variety of committees, such as: conduct and crisis management work groups, leadership and recognition committees, multiple scholarship committees, residential curriculum committees, a deconstructing whiteness work group, and an intercultural development work team.

Cheryl Gonzalez

  • Position: Associate Director/Online Student Services
  • Department: Innovation and Online
  • Email:
Cheryl (she, her, hers) joined CMU’s Native American Programs (NAP) office in 2014. In addition to working with NAP, she worked with LGBTQ Services and Gender Equity Programs, Diversity Education, and the Student Transition Enrichment Program. She moved to the Innovation & Online division in November 2018 as the Global Campus Coordinator working closely with the off-site locations and CMU Online. In 2021, she began working directly with online students as the Assistant Director of Enrollment for Online Cohorts and is currently the Associate Director of Online Student Services for the College of Health Professions and the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences. 

During Cheryl's free time, she has volunteered in many capacities at both city and county levels as well as for the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe. Cheryl's more recent opportunities include volunteering as the Vice-Chair with the Isabella County Human Rights Committee, as an Election Inspector Chairperson for the City of Mount Pleasant, and as the Treasurer for Isabella County Families Against Narcotics. 

Prior to working at CMU, Cheryl held leadership roles as a District Manager, Area Manager and Training Director, and her experiences have contributed to being well-versed in operations, planning and development, and relationship management. She is a proud alumna, earning her BS and MSA online from CMU and started her doctoral journey with CMU’s DET program fall 2022. 

Christian Ikekhuah

Dawn Welch

  • Position: Coordinator/Surveying & Reporting
  • Department: CIS - Curriculum & Assessment
  • Email:
Dawn joined the CMU family in 2016 and coordinates the end of course Student Opinion Surveys (SOS) through the Office of Curriculum and Instructional Support. Dawn appreciates the ability to support faculty, administrators, and students, striving to ensure accuracy and access. Prior to her time at CMU, she worked with students in admissions and advising roles, administrators in conjunction with the Michigan Veteran Education Initiative, and taught as a part-time instructor. 

Dawn earned her BA in Family Life Education (Human Services) and MA in Organizational Management from Spring Arbor University. She is also a Myers Briggs (MBTI) Certified Practitioner and holds Qualtrics CoreXM Expert Certification. Having served on various committees (fundraising, outreach, communication, and surveys) in her community, and as a Hearing Officer for CMU, she now hopes to contribute to her peers by fostering connection and engagement.

Matheus Garcia Souza

  • Position: Director/Music Events
  • Department: School of Music
  • Email:

Matheus Garcia Souza (he/him/his) has been serving as the Director of Music Events at CMU since 2021.  His duties include negotiating and creating contracts for guest artists and lecturers, coordinating nearly 200 public performances during the academic year, performing in concerts as needed, and producing special events and camps for the School of Music.

Before coming to CMU, he has working in administrative positions at four independent arts organizations as well as Yale University.  In recent years, he has served in several committees, and is currently a board member of a non-profit organization.

Matheus holds a B.M. from the University of Missouri, a M.M. from Yale University, and a D.M.A. from SUNY Stony Brook.

Parveeza Gala

  • Position: Assistant Director/MSA Program
  • Department: Master of Science Administration
  • Email:

Parveeza has worked in various positions at CMU with a focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion, celebrating diverse student voices, supporting students' sense of belonging, and promoting faculty/staff intercultural awareness and culturally relevant education.  Her past experiences include leading daily operations and successfully delivering interdisciplinary programs, collaborating closely with program staff, faculty, university partners, and external stakeholders to achieve program objectives.  She has a keen understanding of on-campus as well as post-traditional, and online student populations' needs including specializing in international and military student support.  Parveeza also has experience working as an administrator in an international school in India and has taught within post-secondary educational institutions in both India and the United States.

Parveeza holds a Bachelor and Master of Science in Physics from the University of Mumbai, India as well as a Bachelor of Education from Delhi, India.  She furthered her education by earning a Master of Business Administration from Central Michigan University and is currently pursuing her Ph.D. in Educational Leadership from CMU.

As the current Assistant Director for the MSA program, Parveeza is excited to bring in her expertise and leadership skills to enhance student experiences.  She aims to translate her prior knowledge and skills into advocacy for interdepartmental collaboration, policy enhancement, and process change thereby contributing to a more inclusive and supportive academic environment. 

Octavia Jennings

  • Position: Constituent Engagement Officer
  • Department: Alumni Relations & Constituent Engagement
  • Email:

Octavia Jennings was born and educated in Memphis, Tennessee where she managed multiple ambulatory clinics for the region.  Prior to relocating to Mount Pleasant, Octavia was in Houston, Texas where she obtained her Real Estate license.  As a member of one of the largest congregations in Houston, she was appointed Chair of the Community Service Project.  In this role, Octavia made recommendations to assist organizations within the community with funding and volunteers.

Octavia is one of the newest members of Central Michigan University's Advancement team.  She loves her newest role as a Constituent Engagement Officer with CMU where she gets to engage alum, community and friends of CMU to support our students by giving back.

Keith Malkowski

Keith J. Malkowski joined Central Michigan University in 2015 as Registrar. Prior to Central Michigan, Keith served as Registrar of Delta College from 2010 – 2015. Keith has also served in various roles over his career including: Academic Advising, Coordinator of Assessment/Testing and Asst. Dir. of Admissions with Delta College between 2001 - 2010. Keith received his BA in History from Northern Michigan University and an MA in History from Marquette University. 

Karlee Herzog

  • Position: Assistant Manager/OneCentral
  • Department: Student Account Services & University Billing
  • Email:

Karlee earned her Master of Science and Administration Degree with a focus on leadership from CMU, as well as a Bachelor of Science Degree from CMU. Karlee first joined CMU in 2016 working with Student Account Services and University Billing. Over the years, Karlee has held varies positions within her department that have led her to her current position as Assistant Manager of OneCentral. In this role, Karlee oversees the cashier position, offers assistance, guidance, and support to the call center and OneCentral advisors. Having a role on the SAP/SLCM CORE team has added to her interest in problem solving for her office and being a resource with vast knowledge of her department's processes and procedures.  She also manages the hiring, training, and support to student employees of OneCentral. Karlee aims to foster healthy connections with campus partners while creating an environment that is encouraging and supportive to student success. The opportunity to be part of the P & A Council is exciting to Karlee, and she hopes this will allow a chance for personal growth and overall CMU success.