Brian Bridges, Ph.D., currently serves as Secretary of Higher Education for the state of New Jersey where he is responsible for policy development and coordination of higher education activities for the state, including supporting institutions amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. He also coordinates initiatives to improve college affordability in New Jersey through the State Plan for Higher Education and enhances postsecondary opportunities while promoting equity and access for all through programs such as the state’s Community College Opportunity Grant (CCOG). Dr. Bridges previously served as Vice President of Research and Member Engagement at the United Negro College Fund (UNCF) in Washington, DC. He also led the UNCF Career Pathways Initiative, a project to improve job placement outcomes at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and Predominantly Black Institutions (PBIs). Prior to joining UNCF, Dr. Bridges served in various leadership roles both on- and off-campus. He is a former Assistant Professor of Higher Education Administration at George Washington University. Dr. Bridges earned his Doctorate in Higher Education Administration from Indiana University–Bloomington, a Master of Public Administration degree from the University of North Carolina–Charlotte, and a Bachelor’s of Arts in English Language and Literature from Francis Marion University.
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