Lunch with Rich: Meet the new MCC President

Photo: Marcus Campbell

Dr. Richard Haney was named the new President of Mesa Community College in July and met with students and faculty on Campus.

Haney was present at the first ASMCC meeting on Tue Sept. 6 and met with students, clubs, and staff of the community again on Wed Sept. 7 at the Lunch with Rich event.

Both events were held on Southern & Dobson’s campus and were hosted by the Associated Students of Mesa Community College (ASMCC). The events were held at the Social Sciences building and Library, respectively.


Dr. Richard Haney spoke to a room full of students and clubs during the first meeting of the ASMCC on the Southern & Dobson campus.



Dr. Haney comes to Mesa Community College from Illinois where he served as the intern president of the College of Lake County.

Dr. Haney had been with the institution since 1999 and has severed in several roles including Provost, Vice President for Educational Affairs, and Dean of Business and Industry Services.

Dr. Haney has also received masters and doctorate degrees alongside teaching at the high school, community college, and university levels.

In 2016 the College of Lake County received the Charles Kennedy Equity Award for their work in advancing diversity and student success.

CLC won this award only after first winning the Illinois Community College Trustees Association Equity and Diversity Award and The Central Region for ACCT Equity Award.

Students and faculty had opportunities to ask the new president, Richard Haney, about himself and his intentions here while at MCC.

Just two months into his Presidency Dr. Haney stopped by the ASMCC meeting and touched on several topics with students.

Haney opened with an introduction and continued, “Ultimately our job, my job, the administrators, the faculty and staff here; we’re here to make sure that we’re serving all of you and making this place the best place it can be. So that you can go on to be successful in whatever you choose to pursue.”

When asked what he’d like to see change on campus Haney said, “Coming in, one of the things I’ve really tried to do is to ask a lot of questions and really try to learn about MCC, so I can begin to make judgments about what we need to do here and what we need to do there.”

Students asked questions related to the campus including the football program, parking, Student Information Systems (SIS), difficulties with club funding, DACA, and places he’d like to improve.

He said of the SIS system, “Honestly, It’s a real challenge. We have a lot of work to do there…I’ve already started talking with folks at the district office about what do we need to do to make that system work. Having it shut down, having it run slow, having it kick you out should be a rare, rare, rare occurrence.”

One student asked about his take on continuing the support MCC has shown it’s DACA students and possibly improving that support.

Haney replied, “In my last institution…I was very vocal in support of our DACA students. You’re going to see that for me here as well, wanting to make sure that as an institution we are doing everything we can to support our DACA students.”
Dr. Haney didn’t just address student’s concerns but also offered advice for students on the path to careers.

Haney said, “One of the things that is important for all of you to do…is getting connected to the institution, building new friends. That helps you be successful as a student and it’s also just great networking.”

When asked about the event afterword Erik Aguilar, Student Body President, said “The fact that our President is willing to listen to students and talk to students and work with students that’s something that we want to see happen more and more on campus.”

Aguilar went on to say, “the president is setting that example and he is meeting with all of us and he has been able to get this huge outcome of students.”

If any students or faculty would like to meet Dr. Richard Haney, there will be another chance at Lunch with Rich on Red Mountains campus on September 13th at 12:00pm.

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I've lived in Arizona my whole life and love calling this dust bowl home. As a journalist I will strive to engage with the community and Involve myself in the campus. As a creative writing student I venture to represent repressed voices as honestly as possible. As your features editor I endeavor to give you nothing less than my best.

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