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Highland welcomes new vice president

The Highland Community College Board of Trustees has hired David Naze, Ph.D. as Vice President/Chief Academic Officer, Academic Services.

He comes to Highland from Joliet Junior College, where he served as Dean of Arts and Sciences. With the strong support for community college education, Dr. Naze has been involved in all aspects of making sure the needs of the students are met through course scheduling, academic programming, curriculum management, faculty development, and concurrent enrollment.

With 20 years of community college and higher education experience as a faculty member and executive-level administrator, Dr. Naze brings a well-rounded perspective to his new role at HCC. He is a great believer in cultivating strong relationships built on trust, inclusion, transparency, and support. Dr. Naze believes in service that goes above day to day academia by working with the Illinois Community College Board Program Review Advisory Committee and is currently a peer reviewer for the Higher Learning Commission.

Born and raised in Rockford, Ill., Dr. Naze is familiar with the northwestern part of Highland’s district. A community college education is his foundation with higher education after receiving his associate’s degree from Rock Valley College.

Dr. Naze earned a Bachelor of Arts degree and a Master of Arts degree in Communication Studies from NIU, and he received his Doctor of Philosophy in 2012 from Indiana University.

His teaching experience began at NIU as a communications instructor. He also taught at Indiana University as an associate instructor with Public Speaking, Introduction to Communication, and Culture classes. This was followed by a tenured Associate Professor position at Prairie State College where he taught communication and speech courses.

Dr. Naze fills the position previously held by Chris Kuberski, who was promoted to President in July 2020. Dr. Naze was selected from a field of 76 applicants as part of a nationwide search that began in August 2020.