Dean, San Elijo Campus; Letters & Communication Studies

“Student success at compass point north” is the guiding principle for Dana Smith, instructional dean for the school of Letters & Communication Studies, and site administrator for the San Elijo Campus.

With a graduate degree in rhetoric from UC Davis and an undergraduate degree in communication studies from UC Santa Barbara, Dana began her career at MiraCosta College in 1986 as an associate faculty member. She taught in the evenings while furthering her professional career in advertising and marketing for residential development. She joined the faculty full time in 2000, and enjoyed teaching a rich slate of courses in public speaking, interpersonal communication, group communication, and gender studies. She earned special recognition as Faculty Member of the Year in 2008.

That same year Dana transitioned to administration, earning the position as dean of Arts & Letters. Currently she serves as the instructional dean for five departments in Letters & Communication Studies, as well as the site administrator for MiraCosta’s southern campus in Cardiff. She is responsible for positioning San Elijo as the transfer-focused campus, responding to the needs of the surrounding high school district, local communities, and nearby universities. “I find great satisfaction in discerning what we can do to further the transfer mission of the community college,” Dana says. “I remain deeply committed to serving in the best educational interests of the area I personally call home.”