Meet the Executive Committee

HETS Bylaws, as amended on 2012, dedicate its Article III to the HETS Board of Directors. On this article establishes that the affairs of the Consortium shall be managed by the Board of Directors. Each member institution may have a representative in the Board of Directors. The Executive Committee, which leads the Board of Directors, is elected by Board representatives from member institutions. The term of service is two years, commencing July 1st and ending on June 30th, or until his or her successor has been elected or designated.  Meet current HETS Executive Committee as elected on July 2020:

HETS Chair

Dr. Carlos Morales (watch here his interview)
TCC Connect Campus of Tarrant County College (Texas)

Dr. Morales become TCC Connect’s President in 2013. Before that, he was the Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs and Distance Education Programs at Ana G. Méndez University- Virtual Campus. As such, he provided leadership, vision and planning for the implementation of courses and programs for online delivery.

Previously he was the Executive Director of Academic Technology at Lock Haven University responsible for the delivery of online courses, the incorporation of technology for teaching and learning, faculty development, the STEP program (a student laptop initiative) and also facilitated campus conversations on academic technology. Prior to Lock Haven University, Dr. Morales was the Instructional Designer for the Center for Instructional and Technological Innovation (CITI) at New Jersey City University, responsible for instructional technology staff.

Carlos has extensive online and classroom teaching experience in the areas of: Biology, Science Teaching and Instructional Technology. He also holds professional certifications as Distance Learning Administration Professional from Texas A&M University and Certified Online Instructor (COI) from Walden University. Morales graduated from the Inter American University of Puerto Rico, with bachelors and master’s degrees in Biology and Science Education, and received his doctorate, with a dissertation on Constructivist Learning Environments in Online Course Design, from Capella University. He was a Frye fellow in 2009.

Vice Chair

Mr. Manuel J. Fernós, Esq. (acceda aquí su entrevista)
Inter American University of Puerto Rico

 Manuel J. Fernós, Esq., has been the President of Inter American University of Puerto Rico since 1999. Prior to this, he was the Chancellor of the Metropolitan Campus, Dean of Studies and Dean of the School of Law. Since 1984 he holds the rank of professor at the IAUPR’s law school.

He is currently a member of the Board of Directors of the Society and Educators and Scholars (since 1996), also the former President of the Association of Colleges and Private Universities in Puerto Rico (2003-2005), recently re elected as the Treasurer of HETS, former HETS Chair and Secretary, Vice President and Former Treasurer of Red Latinoamericana of Private Universities and Member of the Administrative Council of the International Association of Universities with headquarters in France since 2008. Among several national and international recognition’s along his career, must be highlighted the award from The Complutense University of Madrid with the Honorary Membership of the Comparative Law Institute.

The Salvation Army also awarded him for his leadership in education and community involvement. Fernós’ vision of Inter American University of Puerto Rico is the internalization of its academic offerings by establishing consortiums and collaborative agreements with other institutions such as: Harris Manchester College- Oxford University, Bologna University, the University of Salamanca, Complutense University of Madrid and The School of Communications in Beiging, China. In September 21, 2007 he signed the Magna Charta Universitatum.

Aware of the needs of those who work and want to begin or continue their studies leading to a degree, Fernós has taken up, as a main priority, the implementation of more than 50 distant education programs, and establishing 25 Cyber Centers in Puerto Rico and Florida, giving students a different educational opportunity for success in a highly competitive world which shrinks day in and day out.

Dr. Carlos Vargas-SEMO


Dr. Carlos Vargas-Aburto (watch here his interview)
Southeast Missouri State University

Dr. Carlos Vargas became the 18th president of Southeast Missouri State University on July 1, 2015, after having served as acting president at Kutztown University of Pennsylvania. He also served as the provost and vice president for academic and student affairs at Kutztown, and was the school’s chief academic officer since 2006.

Prior to his tenure at Kutztown, Dr. Vargas was at Central State University in Wilberforce, Ohio, where he served as provost and vice president for academic affairs. He previously served in several roles at Kent State University (Ohio) for a total of 18 years, including founding director of the program on electron beam technology. He was also Kent’s associate dean for research, interim assistant dean for research, and he served as interim assistant dean for the School of Technology. He started his tenure at Kent State in 1985 as a professor, and continued to teach until his departure from the university.

Dr. Vargas began his career in higher-education at the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), from which he received a Bachelor of Science degree in physics. His initial appointment was as a senior associate researcher for the Institute of Geophysics, and he later held a similar position for the University’s Institute of Physics.

He earned his Ph.D. in physics and aerospace science from the University of Michigan and he has Master of Science degrees from Michigan in physics and aerospace science.

Ing. Gladys Nieves 3- EDP


Eng. Gladys Nieves (acceda aquí su entrevista)
EDP University

Eng. Gladys Nieves Vázquez, coursed her undergraduate studies at Syracuse University and the University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez Campus where he was awarded the degree of Bachelor of Industrial Engineering. Besides her Engineering degree, she has a Master’s degree in Business Administration from the Rio Piedras Campus of the University of Puerto Rico. As a young entrepreneur, she began to apply the acquired knowledge in Total Quality Management, a key experience grown during her work as an engineer at Johnson & Johnson’s plant.

In 1997, she assumed the presidency of EDP College at age 27, after the death of his father, becoming the youngest national president of a university. In 2009 she announced with her mother Gladys Vazquez conversion of the university to a nonprofit entity. Among her accomplishments as president, she had the urge to accredit the institution by Middle States and change it in 2013 from college to university, re naming the institution to EDP University of Puerto Rico. For eight years she represented the Institute of Industrial Engineers in the Disciplinary Tribunal of the College of Engineering.

Today Nieves is the Second Vice-President of the Association of Private Education of Puerto Rico; Secretary of the HETS Consortium; member of the Puerto Rico’s Universia Board of Directors, and the Board of Directors of the Association of Private Education of Puerto Rico.

Regional Representative East 

Dr. Havidán Rodriguez
University at Albany, SUNY (New York)

Dr. Havidán Rodríguez was appointed by the SUNY Board of Trustees as the 20th president of the University at Albany in June 2017. He took office in September 2017 after more than 25 years as a leader in higher education. Dr. Rodríguez served as the Founding Provost & Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV). He also served as President, Ad Interim, and Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at the University of Texas – Pan American (UTPA). Dr. Rodríguez played a key leadership role in the creation of UTRGV – which resulted from the consolidation of UTPA and the University of Texas Brownsville – and the creation, from the ground up, of UTRGV’s School of Medicine.

Dr. Rodríguez has received numerous recognitions and awards and has served on a number of committees for the National Academy of Sciences and on review panels for the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Ford Foundation, and was the Chair of the Latina/o Sociology Section of the American Sociological Association. His role in community engagement and service to the community, at the local, regional, and national level has been extensive. Dr. Rodríguez has served on numerous community, professional, and university boards, organizations, and committees.

Regional Representative West

Dr. Tomás Morales
California State University at San Bernardino (California)

Tomás D. Morales was selected as the president of California State University, San Bernardino in May 2012. He is the university’s fourth president since it opened in 1965.  Previously, Morales was president of the College of Staten Island, The City University of New York (CUNY), since 2007. A staunch advocate of this university’s commitment to student success, he has championed the importance of access to higher education and preparing young people for collegiate success throughout his extensive career as a dedicated educational leader.

During his tenure at CSUSB, Morales has overseen sustained growth in overall enrollment, the number of degrees awarded, community engagement and university fundraising. The face of the institution is also expanding with its five-year strategic plan well underway, including the new Coyote Village residence hall and Coyote Commons dining hall, the largest single construction project in university history.

International Representative

Dr. Maritza Rondón Rangel
Universidad Cooperativa de Colombia

Maritza Rondón Rangel, who served as Director of Quality for Higher Education of the Ministry of National Education (2007 – 2008), Vice Minister in charge and who was linked to the Universidad Cooperativa de Colombia, since 2012, as Academic Vice-rector, became Nationwide Chancellor of the Institution since 2015. The University Assembly appointed the Academician to continue with the institution’s consolidation process, whose immediate challenges this year are: to accredit more than 20 undergraduate programs with high quality and to inaugurate modern infrastructure works in the Bucaramanga headquarters, Santa Marta, Espinal and Medellín. Rondón continued to lead the Strategic Plan “Navigating Together” that sets goals for 2022 and whose basic objective is to make the Cooperative University of Colombia a world-class institution. Rondón Rangel, is at the head of the institution that today has 18 branches, 52 thousand students, 4,500 professors and more than 220 programs with qualified registration.