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UCC narrows search for new president down to three candidates

Written by on March 30, 2021

Candidates will participate in virtual town hall meetings during first week of April.

ROSEBURG, Ore. – Umpqua Community College (UCC) has selected three finalists in the search for its next president. The candidates are Ryan Melton, Rachel Pokrandt, and Teresa Rivenes. The candidates were recommended by a search committee comprised of students, college employees, community members, and selected representatives from the UCC Board of Education.

The committee was chaired by UCC Board of Education Chair Steve Loosley. The next steps for the candidates include participation in virtual town hall meetings. The meetings, which are open to the campus and community, will be held during the first week of April.

The schedule is as follows:
 Tuesday, April 6 – Ryan Melton
 Wednesday, April 7 – Rachel Pokrandt
 Thursday, April 8 – Teresa Rivenes

Ryan Melton

Melton is currently the dean of psychology and counseling at Bushnell University in Eugene. Prior to his current position, he served in a variety of faculty roles at Portland State University, Oregon State University, George Fox University in Salem, Multnomah University, and Chemeketa Community College. Melton received his PhD in counselor education from Oregon State University in 2012.

Rachel Pokrandt

Pokrandt is currently a vice president and campus dean for Colorado Mountain College. Prior to her start there in 2012, she was the dean of instruction at Front Range Community College in Fort Collins, CO. With a background in business, she has also served as an adjunct instructor since 2003. Dr. Pokrandt received her doctorate degree in management from the Swiss Management University in Zurich, Switzerland.

Teresa Rivenes

Rivenes is the current chief academic officer/vice president at Tillamook Bay Community College. Prior to that, she served as the dean of curriculum and instruction at Rogue Community College in Grants Pass, OR. She has also worked as adjunct faculty within the Montana State
University system. Dr. Rivenes received a PhD in general psychology from Capella University in 2013 and an EdD from Montana State University-Bozeman in 2020.

All three virtual town hall meetings will be held via Zoom each day from 2:30 to 3:15 p.m. PDT. To participate, use the Zoom link. During the third town hall meeting, a survey requesting feedback on each candidate will be shared.

Current UCC President Debra Thatcher is retiring on June 30, 2021. The anticipated start date for the successful candidate is July 1.

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