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The Zombie AVPocalypse

Updated: Feb 17, 2022

Night of the Living University Managers

SDSU and the CSU always claim that they have “no money” to hire faculty or departmental staff, support PhD programs, give decent raises, pay graduate students a decent wage (or even make sure students don’t go hungry on campus).

But do you know what SDSU has PLENTY of money for? Managers! Lots and LOTS of managers. The increase in the number of managers since 2015 at SDSU (Associate Vice Presidents, Vice Presidents, Directors and more) is astonishing – it’s like the Night of the Living Managerial Bloat! These senior managers make significantly more money (and benefits) than faculty or staff. In many cases, SDSU could have hired 3 faculty instead of 1 manager. And what do they do all day? Think up new fees for students? Decide on how to spend even more money on a football stadium? Plan more meetings? We’re not sure but we know what they are NOT doing. They are not teaching classes, building affordable housing for students, or improving working conditions.

Using SDSU’s own organizational info from 2015 and 2020, we counted how many new positions were created in departments across the campus. It was already outrageous in 2015, but 2020 was a complete Zombie Manager AVPocalypse. And we aren’t even counting additional support staff. Read it, and weep for Higher Education.

2015 Student Affairs:

AVP for Admin

AVP for Campus Life

AVP for Student Services

Asst VP for Tech Services (now in Info Tech, see below)

Dean of Students

19 Directors and an Ombudsman!

2020 Student Affairs: 2 new AVPs, new IV Dean, 2 new Asst VPs, new Assoc CDO

AVP for Health, Wellbeing, and Accessibility

AVP for Faculty & Staff Diversity

AVP for Finance and Operations

AVP for Campus and Community Partnerships

AVP and Dean of Students

IV Dean of Students

Asst VP for Community and Belonging

Asst VP for Student Financial Management

Assoc Chief Diversity Officer

FYI, Chief Diversity Officer wrapped into VP position now; in 2015 SDSU had a Chief Diversity Officer in Prez office



2015 Grad & Research Affairs:

VP for Research & Grad Dean (one person)

1 Dean, 1 Assoc Dean, 1 Asst Dean, 1 Director

2020 Research and Innovations: VP split into two positions: VP, Grad Dean; 4 new AVPs, 1 new Asst VP, new Exec Director, new Director

VP for Research and Innovation

AVP for Research and Innovation

AVP for Research Advancement

AVP for Research Operations

Asst VP for Research Support Services

Director of Undergrad Research

Exec Director of ZIP Launchpad

AVP of SDSU Research Foundation (in 2015, this was Exec Director of SDSU Research Foundation)


In 2015 Info Tech was not its own unit. Searching by names for 2015 finds the following:

Director ITS

Asst VP of Student Affairs Tech Services

Director Student Affairs Tech Services

IT Security Officer (and Director of Employee Relations and Compliance? Can't tell if separate)

Director Univ Computer Operations

2020 Info Tech: New VP, 2 new AVPs, 1 new Asst VP, 3 new Directors, IT Officer now Chief Officer

VP and CIO

Chief Data Architect

AVP of Enterprise Info Systems

Director of Finance and Admin

Chief Info Security Officer

AVP for Learning Tech and Environs

Senior Director of Networking and P3 Partnerships

Asst VP of Research Cyberinfrastructre

Director of Web Services and Infrastructure

No other Directors listed (e.g., there is still Director ITS, not sure what else)


2015 Office of Provost:

AVP for Academic Affairs

AVP for Enrollment Management

AVP Faculty Affairs

Director of IR

Assoc Director Enrollment

Director Admissions

Director Advising

Director Curriculum


Asst VP International Programs

2020 Academic Affairs has Provost: 1 new AVP, 2 new Asst VPs, and a new Director

Vice Provost

Director Resource Management

AVP Assessment, Accreditation, and Curriculum

AVP Enrollment Services

AVP Faculty Advancement and Student Success

AVP International Affairs

Asst VP IR

Asst VP Academic Labor Relations

No directors listed


Even the President’s office higher administration has doubled:

2015 President and Chief of Staff

2020 President, Chief of Staff, Special Asst, and Executive Asst/Office Manager

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