As many of you may know, I will be leaving Mesa Community College later this summer to embark on the next phase of my career as Chancellor of the Seattle Community College District.
Though I am excited about this new opportunity and challenge, it was a difficult decision to make because I will be leaving a special college that I love. It is not easy to say good-bye to so many wonderful community college educators and professionals with whom I share the same ideal and commitment: changing lives and enabling dreams. Without question, the past eight years at MCC have been the most challenging, most enriching, and most rewarding part of my professional career.
Promoting student success and building an exceptional college has been our collective focus during my tenure. Despite various challenges, we have advanced on many fronts, from institutional planning and daily decision making to improved outcomes assessment. We received reaccreditation until 2025, obtained the Community Engagement Classification by the Carnegie Foundation, improved and developed shared governance practices, and were named by the Aspen Institute as one of the top 150 community colleges in the nation.
We also led the Maricopa Community College District in external fund-raising. We improved the College’s website, completed more than $110 million in bond remodeling and new construction and changed the faces of both campuses. We led sister colleges in many technological endeavors to better support teaching, learning, and student support services. We also won the NJCAA Division II National Championships for Women’s Basketball and Baseball, and a Regional Championship for Men’s Basketball.
If it sound like I’m bragging, I am. But this has never been about me as the college president. It is about our shared success and pride; it is about our capacity to excel as an innovative institution. I have been privileged to be part of this journey, and I’m confident that MCC’s best years are still ahead.
It has been an honor to serve MCC, Mesa and the East Valley together with many community, civic, and business partners, too numerous to list here. I benefited significantly from the advice and counsel of many others, including the Alumni Advisory Board.
I take with me many fond memories. With deep gratitude and humbleness, I thank you for your support and friendship.
Shouan Pan, Ph.D.