Ventura College East Campus will continue to thrive under the leadership of Dr. Jesús Vega, but now he has a new title: dean of student services at Ventura College. Leticia Canales has joined the college as another dean of student services in the Division of Student Affairs. The two leaders were selected following a comprehensive search and will lead distinct programs that champion the approximately 13,000 students who enroll each semester at Ventura College and Ventura College East Campus in Santa Paula.
“Having attended Oxnard College, I know firsthand how life-changing community college can be for students. I see the same spark every day at Ventura College East Campus as students pursue their educational goals,” said Vega, who began his new position in July after serving as assistant dean for Ventura College East Campus since 2019. “I am excited to continue working with our students, their families and our community members in the Santa Clara River Valley, while taking on the additional responsibilities of the dean of student services position.”
In his new position, Vega oversees VC East Campus, Title IX, MESA, Veteran’s Resource Center, First Year Experience, Student Activities, Dual Enrollment, Off Campus Programs and Pirate’s Cove.
Canales started her duties on Aug. 2. She will lead the development and facilitation of the following student service areas: Counseling, Extended Opportunities Programs & Services (EOPS), Disabled Students Programs & Services (DSPS), CalWORKs, Student Conduct/BICT, University Transfer Center and International Students.
“We look forward to continuing to collaborate with Dr. Vega in his new role. He has a thorough understanding of the transformational benefits of earning a college degree or certificate,” said Damien Peña, vice president, student affairs at Ventura College. “Dean Canales’ experience in the California Community College system will be an asset to the District and our students wanting to enrich their lives through higher education.”
Before joining Ventura College, Vega served as the outreach specialist and student success and support supervisor at Moorpark College from 2014-2019. Prior to that, he served as the program advisor for the dual enrollment program at Santa Barbara City College from 2006-2014.
As a first-generation college student, Vega continues to be a strong advocate of access and equitable education for students at all levels. He earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Irvine and his master’s and doctorate degrees from California State University, Northridge.
Canales comes to Ventura College from Madera Community College in Madera, Calif., where she has served as the dean of student services for the past five years. She led the accreditation team that designated Madera from center status with Reedley College to becoming the 116th community college in the state system. She served an interim assignment as dean of counseling at Fresno Community College, while also serving as the transfer coordinator at the college for five years.
Canales brings a wealth of experience in statewide initiatives, including Student Equity and Achievement and Guided Pathways. She received her associate degree from Reedley College and her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from California State University, Fresno.