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Meet the Staff

Bonnie Gasior

Dr. Bonnie Gasior, Interim Director

Office: Library, Room 507

Phone: 562.985.4233
Email: bonnie.gasior@csulb.edu

In both research and teaching, Dr. Gasior’s interests include women writers of and gender representations in Early Modern Spain and Colonial Spanish-American literature. She is the co-editor of two books—Crosscurrents: Transatlantic Perspectives on Early Modern Hispanic Theater (2006) and Making Sense of the Senses in the Spanish Comedia (2017), the latter of which earned the 2020 Vern Williamsen Prize for Comedia Studies: http://www.wordpress.comedias.org/ahct-prizes/. She is also the co-author of a third-year Spanish literature textbook, Redes Literarias: antología del texto hispánico en su contexto histórico-cultural (2018): https://muse.jhu.edu/article/751525/summary. Her most recent edited volume, Reconsidering Early Modern Spanish Literature through Mass and Pop Culture: Contemporizing the Classics in the Classroom, is forthcoming (early 2021.) Furthermore, Dr. Gasior has authored numerous publications in journals such as HispaniaChasqui, Laberinto, Bulletin of the Comediantes and Cervantes: Bulletin of the Cervantes Society of America, including two, peer-reviewed articles with former MA students. She received a President’s Award for Outstanding Faculty Achievement in 2018, as well as a CSU Faculty Innovation and Leadership Award in 2019, the latter of which came about in part due to her ongoing work as a Mental Health First Aid Instructor: https://www2.calstate.edu/csu-system/why-the-csu-matters/graduation-initiative-2025/FILA/past-awardees/2019-20-awardees/Pages/gasior.aspx. Those efforts persist in 2020-21 in the form of mental health literacy training as a Faculty Fellow with the Chancellor’s Office.

Since her arrival at CSULB 2001, Dr. Gasior’s commitment to student success as undergraduate advisor, program director, and graduate advisor in her department and as the NCAA Faculty Athletics Representative has remained constant. Her advocacy of high impact practices throughout her career is exemplified through:

  • Study abroad. Dr. Gasior has led students to international destinations four times in her career. Ask her about her trips to Spain and Cuba!
  • Service-learning courses. In 2018 and 2019, she designed and taught a course on urban poverty, which culminated in hands-on experience in Pittsburgh, PA, where she grew up, to serve the community as housing ambassadors and cultivating urban gardens.
  • Internships. From 2017-2019, she worked alongside the CLA Career Readiness team to recruit internship partners and to train agencies. Did you know that UHP has hosted a social media intern every semester since 2019? Dr. Gasior is currently working on an internship-focused manuscript with several CSULB colleagues.
  • Reimagining the First-Year Experience. As a Paideia Fellow, Dr. Gasior designed a course for first-year freshman called “CSyouLB”
  • Teaching Capstone and Writing-intensive classes. (UNIV 300 and RGR 450). 
  • Undergraduate Research. In addition to publishing with former students, Dr. Gasior’s research assistant is UHP sophomore, Taylor Andrews!

Dr. Gasior has mentored students in UROP, Partners for Success and the Sally Casanova Pre-Doctoral Programs and looks forward sharing her passion for collaborative learning and research with all UHP students!

Vincent Norga, Associate Director

Vincent Norga, Associate Director

Office: Library, Room 507

Phone: 562.985.1950
Email: vincent.norga@csulb.edu

Vincent earned a Masters in Educational psychology from CSULB.  His experience in higher education ranges from coordinating placement exams, first-year transition programs, study skill workshops, academic intervention programs, graduate school preparation courses, academic advising, and scholarships.   

Vincent completed his undergraduate education at California State University, Fullerton (CSUF), where he pursued a BA in Psychology. In undergrad he conducted and presented research under different faculty members with topics including anxiety, information re-call, and auditory perception.

Vincent strives to assist students in reaching their full potential and looks forward in working with you.

Kashima Samuels

Kashima Samuels, Associate Director

Office: Library, Room 507

Phone: 562.985.4706
Email: kashima.samuels@csulb.edu

Kashima attended UC Santa Cruz (UCSC) and pursued a BA in Psychology and a minor in Education. After graduating from UCSC, Kashima joined AmeriCorps and volunteered as an Outreach Coordinator for a California low-income housing community. Through this experience, she was able to engage with a diverse population and directly address social justice issues. During this time, she was reminded of why education was important and made the decision to pursue her graduate degree in Student Affairs.

Kashima pursued her Masters in Counseling with an emphasis in Student Development in Education at CSULB. In graduate school, she served as President for the Association for Professionals in Student Affairs; co-developed, implemented and coordinated an International Service Learning Program at CSULB; completed a thesis that examined how international service learning experiences influence graduate student identity development; and co-presented research at the American Educational Research Association Annual Meeting.

Jacqueline Toy

Jacqueline Toy, Academic Advisor

Office: Library, Room 507

Phone: 562.985.1951
Email: jacqueline.toy@csulb.edu

Jacqueline Toy received a BS in Public Health Sciences and a minor in Education from University California, Irvine (UCI). Jacqueline’s Student Affairs experience ranges from working in Housing and Residential Life, Student Life & Leadership, and the Office of Student Conduct.

Jacqueline earned her MS in Counseling with the option in Student Development in Higher Education (SDHE) from CSULB. In graduate school, she served as a Graduate Assistant for Women’s Gender and Equity Center as well as an Assistant Residential College Coordinator in Housing and Residential Life. She completed her thesis entitled Mentors in Violence Prevention Training and Its Effectiveness with Resident Assistants, which explored gender violence and the effect of a leadership bystander training with student leaders on a college campus. Jacqueline is a student-centered Academic Affairs professional with interests in student leadership and advocates for student growth and development.

Brenda Pulido Villanueva

Brenda Pulido Villanueva, Academic Advisor

Office: Library, Room 507

Phone: 562.985.2426
Email: brenda.pulidovillanueva@csulb.edu

Born and raised in México, Brenda B. Pulido Villanueva immigrated to the United States with her family at the age of 11. Brenda attended Cerritos Community College where she became an honors student and was introduced to the world of research. Brenda presented her research about the Mexican/Latinx immigrant community at state and national conferences, and ultimately transferred to the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).

Brenda graduated with honors with an International Developmental Studies degree and a minor in Political Science from UCLA. Two of the highlights of her undergraduate experience are studying abroad in Italy and conducting research in South Africa. Additionally, Brenda became a peer mentor for transfer students at UCLA and discovered her passion for supporting people attain a better quality of life through access to educational opportunities.

This passion led Brenda to obtain a master’s degree in Social and Cultural Analysis of Education (SCAE) at California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) and to continue to do research through her master’s thesis. Brenda has published her research in book articles, reports, and encyclopedia entries (in press) and loves the opportunity to contribute to diversifying academia by including the experiences of Mexican immigrant communities and women through their own voice by utilizing culturally relevant empowering healing research methodologies. Brenda has advised diverse undocumented, first-generation, low-income, and transfer students throughout her career. She is excited to support CSULB Honors students in their academic, personal, and professional development in a holistic way.

Berenice Contreras

Berenice Contreras, Administrative Support Coordinator

Office: Library, Room 507

Phone: 562.985.1774
Email: berenice.contreras@csulb.edu

Berenice Contreras earned her BA in Liberal Studies from California State University, Long Beach. During her undergraduate career, she was involved in The Honors Program, Delta Gamma Fraternity, Educational Opportunity Program, and Liberal Studies Student Association. She is an Alumnus of the program and completed her thesis project on The Study of Latino Students Attrition and Retention.

She became a Student Assistant for Housing and Residential Life and was introduced to her passion in Higher Education. She worked for Student Orientation Advising and Registration as a SOAR advisor and advised incoming university students on the various campus policies, resources and requirements to enhance their college experience.

After completing her Bachelor’s degree she served as the Academic Support Coordinator for College of Health and Human Services Advising Center. She was given the opportunity to step into an Advising role with Honors Program and learn more tools to assist students. As a first generation college student, her passion lies with helping students enhance their college experience.

STUDENT STAFF

Jullissa Gonzalez

Jullissa Gonzalez

Student Assistant

Melanie Morales

Melanie Morales

Social Media Intern

Adam Nunez

Adam Nunez

Student Assistant