Dr. Santanu Bandyopadhyay, named president of Modesto Junior College effective June 1, said growing enrollment and forging meaningful alliances with regional employers are among his immediate goals.
The Yosemite Community College District Board of Trustees selected Bandyopadhyay, who was serving as interim president since January at its May 12 meeting. Previously, Bandyopadhyay had served as president of Columbia College in Tuolumne County, YCCD’s other institution, since July 2018 when also he joined the CVHEC Board of Directors.
Marking its centennial anniversary this fall, MJC serves about 22,000 students at MJC’s East and West campuses in Modesto.
President Bandyopadhyay takes over at a critical moment for California’s 16th-oldest community college as it focuses during its centennial on reconnecting with students after a year of mostly online learning forced by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“My short-term priority is to re-open the campus — paying particular attention to equity — build the enrollments we have lost during the pandemic, develop centers of excellence to cater to the need of our local businesses and ensure long-term fiscal stability,” he said.
“The effect of the pandemic was most severe on students who need us the most — therefore, an equity-focused recovery is critical for long- term economic growth of the region. Developing a deep connection with local businesses and partnering with them to understand and satisfy their needs in innovative ways continues to remain our priority.”
Bandyopadhyay has more than 23 years of experience in higher education. He was first the director of institutional research and planning and then as executive vice president Cypress College in Orange County. He also served at Zane State College in Ohio and Ohio University and taught computer science at theNational Institute of Information Technology.
In addition to his college administrative and teaching experience, Bandyopadhyay has been involved innational initiatives such as Achieving the Dream, Foundations of Excellence and Survey of Entering StudentEngagement.
Bandyopadhyay earned a doctorate in higher education from Ohio University, an M.B.A. from Ohio University and a bachelor of science in physics from Kolkata University in India.