Dennis Falcon Breaks Glass Ceiling as the First Person of Color to Lead Faculty Senate

Dennis FalconMeet the newly elected president of the Cerritos College Faculty Senate Dennis Falcon, assistant professor of political science. Dennis, a Chicano of Yaqui descent, is the first person of color to serve as the Faculty Senate President in the College’s 65-year history.

Dennis is no stranger to being a pioneer. In fact, he has been shattering the glass ceiling in his life. As the first in his family to receive college education, he started at Hartnell College, and completed his bachelor’s in philosophy at California State University, Long Beach. After working as an outreach coordinator for the Rancho Santiago Community College District for several years, Dennis pursued his master’s degree in public administration at Southern Illinois State University Carbondale on a full scholarship. He is a veteran of the United States Army.

In 1992, he became the first Chicano person to earn a master’s degree in public administration from the University. 

With a master’s degree under his belt, Dennis returned to California and went on to further his education in a doctoral program in political science at Claremont Graduate University on a full scholarship. He began teaching part-time at Cerritos College in 1995. He also taught part-time at several other colleges until he earned tenure at Cerritos College in 1997. Dennis previously served as chair of the History and Political Science departments, and currently serves as the faculty advisor to the Political Science Club.

For the past six years, Dennis has been active on the Faculty Senate. His presidential run for the Senate was motivated by the need to represent the underserved student population and to advocate for diversity. As president, Dennis plans to implement outreach efforts to increase community involvement by providing residents opportunities to share their input with the Senate. 

“I’m thrilled to overcome social barriers and set an example for underserved people to open the doors of opportunity for them. The Faculty Senate is an important organization that makes key recommendations on matters that affect students. The Senate leadership must reflect the student population and promote diversity to better understand and support our students,” said Dennis.