Sunday, 14 July 2013

Upper Iowa University names Bob Barriga as Mesa Center director

Bob Barriga

Upper Iowa University has named Bob Barriga of Gilbert, Az., as director of the UIU-Mesa Center

FAYETTE, Iowa (June 11, 2013) – Bob Barriga has joined Upper Iowa University as director of the UIU-Mesa educational center.  Barriga brings over 12 years of higher education instruction, as well as administrative experience and a background in mechanical engineering and entrepreneurship.

“I am very excited about this new opportunity with Upper Iowa University,” said Barriga. “This will be my ninth industry in which I can personally grow while also developing and growing the University. The culture of Upper Iowa is supportive and dedicated to its students. It’s unique, and it’s very humbling to be a part of that.”

“Bob brings a wealth of experience to the position and an entrepreneurial spirit that will grow the Mesa Center as we become a partner in the Fiesta District and city of Mesa,” affirmed Wayne Converse, UIU director of military affairs and business development.  “We are delighted to have Bob join the Upper Iowa team.”

Upper Iowa University launched the Mesa Center in September 2012, opening temporary quarters in the Mesa Public Schools Student Services Building. The UIU-Mesa Center will open a permanent location in the Fiesta District this summer after renovation of the former Borders store is complete at 1361 S. Alma School Road. A grand opening celebration is slated for 10 a.m., Monday, August 5.

A native of Arizona, Barriga holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Arizona-Tucson, and a master’s of business administration from Pepperdine University in Malibu, Calif. He has worked in manufacturing management, as well as technical and engineering management for companies that include Proctor & Gamble, Pepsi Co., and Nabisco. Barriga began teaching online business courses for several universities in 2000. In 2010, he became a fulltime faculty member at Collins College in Phoenix. A year later, he was hired as chair and lead faculty member in the general education department. He and his wife, Christine, reside in Gilbert, Az. They have two grown daughters.

UIU opened the Mesa facility as its 19th off-campus education center in the United States as part of the City of Mesa’s Higher Education Initiative. UIU has been providing educational programs beyond its Fayette campus since the 1970s and has been establishing education centers to serve communities across the United States for more than 30 years.

UIU has a unique academic calendar that offers classes in six eight-week terms year-round with rolling admissions. UIU-Mesa offers majors in elementary education; RN to BSN; business (accounting, business administration, human resources management, and management); criminal justice; human services; psychology; public administration (general, law enforcement or fire science emphasis areas); and social science. UIU can help students access financial aid for which they are eligible, and some UIU scholarships are offered to assist at-risk Mesa students. Tuition discounts are available for students pursuing majors in education, nursing, criminal justice and public administration.

Additional information is available on the UIU website at The Mesa Center can be contacted at 480-834-4620 or

About Upper Iowa University Founded in 1857, Upper Iowa University is a private, not-for-profit university providing undergraduate and graduate degree programs and leadership development opportunities to some 6,200 students—nationally and internationally—at its Fayette campus and learning centers worldwide. Upper Iowa University is a recognized innovator in offering accredited, quality programs through flexible, multiple delivery systems, including online and independent study. For more information, visit

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