ASU Havasu is smaller by design

March 24, 2019

ASU Havasu has 150 students and will graduate 29 of them on May 4. It is the largest graduating class the local campus has produced, says campus director Raymond Van Der Riet said. He expects the school will enroll enough freshmen to replace the graduating students.

“At least for this fall — given that we will graduate a large number — next year (fall 2020) should see a good jump to approximately 180 — with 20-30 net student gain each year thereafter for the next five years.”

He has high hopes for the future.

“I believe ASU Lake Havasu will find its place in the higher education landscape. The campus will have a solid academic representation, and will be well known among active lifestyle-oriented students,” he said. “Growth will be steady over the next five years. Eventually, students will primarily come from Arizona, California, the Midwest, northwest and international. ASU Lake Havasu will continue to be a strong community partner.”

Van Der Riet has been at ASU Havasu since the fall of 2012. He was recruited as associate director and faculty in organizational leadership.

“My background in campus/program start-ups was a good fit for ASU Lake Havasu. I was a former VP of Strategic Initiatives at Franklin Pierce University in New Hampshire. I used to teach organizational leadership, project management, economics and history,” he said.

At the Havasu campus, Van Der Riet mentors students for their senior capstone projects. He also helps coordinate the co-op program, an initiative that requires students to work with faculty and community mentors.

He describes ASU Havasu as a “teaching campus.” He explained this by pointing out that ASU’s Tempe campus is more focused on research.

“Our faculty and staff prioritize student engagement,” he said. “Our student activities are designed to bring students together on a regular basis.”