Office of the President

President's CV

President Coley at Manor House


President, California State Polytechnic University, Pomona


Dr. Soraya M. Coley has served as president of Cal Poly Pomona since January 1, 2015. She is the university's sixth president.


Ph.D., social planning and policy, Bryn Mawr College, 1981
M.A., social planning and social research, Bryn Mawr College, 1974
A.B., sociology, Lincoln University

Professional Background

California State University

  • California State Polytechnic University, Pomona: President (2015- )
  • California State University, Bakersfield: Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs (2005-14); Interim Vice President for University Advancement  (2011-12)
  • California State University, Fullerton: Dean, College of Human Development and Community Service (1996-2001); Administrative Fellow (1994-96); Department Chair, Human Services Department (1991-93); Professor of Human Services
  • National Center for Substance Abuse and Child Welfare/Children and Family Futures Senior Research Fellow (2004-05)
  • Alliant International University Systemwide Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs (2001-03)

Community Service

  • Children and Family Futures, Board of Directors (2001-2017)
  • Appointed by Chair of Kern County Board of Supervisors to “County-Wide Strategic Planning Committee to Address Problem of Methamphetamine Use and Its Impact on Kern County” (2009-Present)
  • “Ready to Start,” Board of Directors, (pre-school program for underserved children), Kern County Schools, Bakersfield, CA (2006–Present)


  • 2023 ACE Donna Shavlik Award
  • 2000 City of Lake Forest “Outstanding Service and Leadership to the Community”
  • Recognized as “One of Ten Women Making a Difference” by Orange County Metro Magazine, March 2000
  • 2000 Cal State Fullerton Crystal Elephant
  • 1999 National Association Women Business Owners, Orange County Chapter Education Advocate Award
  • Soraya M. Coley Award for Faculty Service to the Community, Lincoln University, award named in her honor to be given yearly to a faculty member who contributes significantly to the community
  •  Honored by the African American Civic Engagement Project (AACEP) & Assemblymember Sebastian Ridley-Thomas, June 2017
  • Honorary Doctorate in Humane Letters, Lincoln University, 2016
  • 2015 Trailblazer Award presented by Leadership California
  • Distinguished Alumni Award, Bryn Mawr College, November 2015

Selected Publications

With Cynthia Scheinberg, "Proposal Writing- Effective Grantsmanship," Sage Publications, 2013

“Help-Seeking Behavior, Expectations, and Goals of Battered Women: Implications for Practice,” Journal of Counseling and Human Service Professors, 1989

With G. Corey, “Challenges Facing Human Services Education Today,” Journal of Counseling and Human Service Professors, 1989

Dr. Coley has also made numerous presentations in a range of fields including professional development and leadership, academic assessment, human services and race and gender in higher education.

Updated: July 2023