Graduate Division

students with susan

The Graduate Division Welcomes Susan Charles as Associate Dean

Associate Dean Susan Charles

Dr. Susan Charles is an undeniable multitasker.  For the past two decades, she’s not only managed the busy lives of her two active children, running between fencing tournaments, cello practices, scouts, and academic functions; but she’s also developed an impressive career as a professor of psychology and an advocate for the wellbeing of graduate students. 

Susan recently joined UCI’s Graduate Division as associate dean, where her primary focus will be concentrating on the health and welfare of current graduate students, as well as preparing them for professional careers both inside and outside of academia.   

She has been in the UCI family since her appointment as assistant professor in the Department of Psychology and Social Behavior, after spending three years at Stanford University as a post-doctoral research associate.

“People are the ultimate puzzle, and studying how emotional experience and emotion regulation change across the life span, and how this also relates to our physical health, allows me to learn new information, test interesting questions and play with numbers,” she says.  “Ultimately, our goal is to improve the quality of life for people, and this profession allows me to research problems to this aim.”

It’s no doubt that her interest in improving people’s quality of life is what has motivated her interests in enriching the lives of UCI’s graduate student body. Susan has spent three years on UCI’s Graduate Council, and served as chair during the past year.

In addition, she was the UCI representative to the Coordinating Committee on Graduate Affairs (CCGA). Both the Graduate Council and the CCGA are Academic Senate Committees that are tasked with establishing policies and overseeing procedures in graduate programs on campus and throughout the UC system.  Susan’s move to the Graduate Division offers yet another way to make a positive impact on the graduate student community here at UCI.

“Graduate students are critical for every aspect of the university’s mission: They advance scientific knowledge, carry out life-changing research; and participate in the education of undergraduate students. They are the future generation of academic and industrial leaders” she says.

susan with students