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Academic Affairs

Jiseon lee isbara 

Provost Jiseon Lee Isbara

Specific roles and responsibilities are distributed among various leaders, including the Associate Provost for Assessment and Accreditation, the Interim Assistant Provost, and the Academic Affairs Projects Manager. 

The objective of Academic Affairs is to support faculty and academic staff in their effort to educate diverse students to enrich our world through their creativity, skill, and vision. It is committed to developing and improving curriculum, advocating for effective educational resources, working closely with chairs, directors, faculty, and instructional support staff, and collaboratively working with other college divisions to achieve the college’s mission

In collaboration with the Student Success division, the Provost oversees co-curricular offerings and student success-enhancing initiatives.

The Provost’s Office facilitates academic administration at the College, coordinates the Academic Meeting Schedule, organizes the Annual Faculty Convocation, conducts the annual Academic Excellence Awards and  Teaching Excellence Awards processes, and, in collaboration with Human Resources & Development, leads the New Faculty Orientation. See also: Faculty Events and Activities


Academic Affairs Administration

jiseon lee isbara

Jiseon Lee Isbara

Ahmanson Hall, 2nd floor
(310) 665-6979


Primary Responsibilities

  • Chief Academic Officer
  • Strategic Leadership
  • Academic Program Planning
  • Curriculum and Program Development
  • Academic Policies and Procedures
  • Assessment and Accreditation
  • Academic Division Budgets and Resources
  • Faculty and Academic Staff Recruitment and Development
  • Faculty Governance
  • Operations and Services
  • Administrative Systems
  • Academic Advising and Mentoring
  • Academic Support Services


Joanne Mitchell

Joanne Mitchell

Assistant Provost for Academic Effectiveness and Accreditation
Ahmanson Hall, 2nd floor
(310) 665-6963


Primary Responsibilities

  • Accreditation Liaison Officer
  • Oversee and Guide Assessment and Program Review
  • Support Data-Informed Decision-Making
  • Academic Policies and Procedures
  • Student Success Initiatives
  • Support Budget & Resource Planning

Joanne holds a B.A. in Economics and Government from Wesleyan University, a Master’s in Public and Private Management from Yale University, and an M.F.A. from CalArts. Since arriving at Otis in 2010, she has served as a Curatorial Intern in the Ben Maltz Gallery, Interim Academic Coordinator of the Foundation Program, Assistant Chair and Associate Professor in the Foundation Program, and most recently as a member of the Interim Provost Support Team. Her work has been exhibited at the Tsai Performing Arts Center, The Graduate Center - CUNY, SOMArts, and the LGBT Historical Museum among others.



matthew penkala

Matthew Penkala

Director of Academic Administration
Ahmanson Hall, 2nd floor
(310) 665-6815


Primary Responsibilities

  • Academic Affairs Project Management
  • Travel and External Study Management 
  • Academic Research Support
  • Divisional Calendar
  • Academic Meeting Schedule
  • Assessment and External Program Review Support
  • Budget Planning Support
  • Administrative Systems Support
  • Web and Publications Support
  • HEOA Compliance

Matthew Penkala is an artist whose paintings are included in numerous public and private collections nationally, and have been reviewed or featured in numerous publications and catalogues. Penkala came to Otis in 2012, following an interim faculty position heading the Painting Department at Cranbrook Academy of Art. He served as Academic Coordinator in Otis’ Foundation Program for two years before joining the Provost’s Office. He has also been the Faculty Leader for the Foundation Program’s Paris Travel Elective since 2013. He has worked for various Los Angeles-based design firms providing Art Direction and production for web and print based projects. Penkala earned his M.F.A. in Painting at Cranbrook Academy of Art and a B.F.A. in Photography from Arizona State University.

Learn more about Matthew at:



dr. angila

Angila Romious, PhD

Director of Institutional Research and Effectiveness
Ahmanson Hall, 2nd floor


Primary Responsibilities

  • Provide Data-Driven Decision Support for Institutional Operations and Student Success
  • Ensure Institution-Wide Data Strategy
  • Data and Analysis Related Training and Coaching
  • Institutional Research/Institutional Effectiveness
  • Accountability Reporting
  • IPEDS Keyholder
  • Strategic Enrollment Planning Guidance and Monitoring
  • Assessment, Program Review, and Program Evaluation Support
  • Accreditation Support
  • Budget and Resource Planning Support
  • Strategic Plan Monitoring

Angila Romious PhD has over 9 years’ teaching experience in higher education and professional experience in institutional research. In addition to her work as Director of the Office of Institutional Research and Effectiveness at Otis College, she teaches Qualitative and Quantitative Research Methods in the Departments of Sociology and Social Work at Mount Saint Mary’s University. Dr. Romious consults as an external evaluator conducting program and project evaluations for non-profit organizations and businesses. Currently, she sits on the Board of Directors for Inner City Education Foundation (ICEF) Public Schools and is a former Board Member for Precision Dance Company and The Pearl Foundation. She earned her M.A. and Ph.D. in Social Ecology from UC Irvine.

Learn more about The Office of Institutional Research (OIRE) here.




Megan Manary Capul 

Executive Assistant to the Provost
Ahmanson Hall, 2nd floor




Clifford Eberly

Academic Program Events Coordinator
Ahmanson Hall


Linda Robinson

Academic Program Business Coordinator
Ahmanson Hall


Bailey La Flam

Academic Administration Coordinator
Ahmanson Hall


Keila Lopez

Faculty Coordinator
Ahmanson Hall


Sara Hanna

Faculty Coordinator
Ahmanson Hall



otis logo

Academic Program Administration


Meg Cranston, Chair, Fine Arts and Graduate Fine Arts
Jill Higashi-Zeleznik, Chair, Fashion Design
TeaYoun Kim-Kassor, Chair, Foundation
Kerri Steinberg, Chair, Liberal Arts and Sciences
Steve McAdam, Founding Academic Chair, Product Design
Harry Mott, Chair, Digital Media
Kali Nikitas, Chair, Communication Arts & Graduate Graphic Design
Linda Pollari, Chair, Environmental Design
Jennifer Caveza, Chair, Toy Design
Michele Jaquis, Director of Interdisciplinary Studies & the
Artists Community Teaching (ACT) Program

Rich Shelton, Director of Integrated Learning
Heather Cleary, Interim Director of the Library
Jean-Marie Venturini, Director of the Learning Centers
Andrew Armstrong, Director of Technical Support Services