College of the Canyons honored its longstanding chancellor on Tuesday, as staff and faculty hosted a party to celebrate Dianne G. Van Hook’s 30 years on-campus.
As one of the longest serving community college chancellors in the state of California, Van Hook has had many opportunities to leave her mark on the college.
With her guidance, the college has grown in size and reputation throughout not just the Santa Clarita Valley but the state of California, as it annually welcomes new students, programs and grants.
Since Van Hook began heading COC in 1988, the school has hired 279 additional full-time faculty and staff, added more than 50 certificate training and degree programs, welcomed an additional 15,491 students to its classrooms, established the Canyon Country campus and expanded its budget by $231.1 million, according to previous reports.
“When I was hired, the board advertised that they wanted someone who could get money, who could plan, who could help establish a vision for the district and market it, who could develop facilities and programs and partnerships,” Van Hook previously said to the Signal. “The reason I applied for the job is because that’s what I like to do.”
Van Hook added her most noteworthy improvement to the school was changing the college’s growth formula at the state level to bring additional funding.
Van Hook credits her success, and the success of COC, to the college’s dedicated staff, the community’s support and her personal love of her work.
“I’m a firm believer that if you’re working at doing what you like to do, you’re going to do it better and longer than if you do that which you really don’t enjoy doing or if it’s not a good fit,” Van Hook said in November.