Ashanti Hands has been named president of San Diego Mesa College, San Diego’s largest community college. She will begin her new duties on July 1.
San Diego Mesa College enrolls more than 20,000 students according to the most recent data from the U.S. Department of Education. African Americans make up 6 percent of the student body.
Since 2016, Dr. Hands has served as vice president of student services at Mesa College. She joined the college in 2008 where she has held positions as dean of student affairs, acting dean of student development and matriculation, and acting vice president of student services.
“I am humbled to be selected for the presidency of the very college I have called home for more than 14 years,” Dr. Hands said. “The ability to live my purpose of creating conditions that matter for students to succeed at a college so deeply committed to equity and excellence brings me immense joy. I am excited to continue the great work we have started at Mesa College and look forward to the bold, courageous, equity-minded ways we will show up for our students, each other, our district, and community.”
Dr. Hands earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology from the University of California, San Diego. She holds a master’s degree in education with an emphasis in multicultural counseling and a doctorate in educational leadership from San Diego State University.