Friday April 12, 8:30 am – 9:30 am
Higher Education in California: Our Students and Our Future

Dr. Lande Ajose will join us at ARC2019 to provide one of her first speeches in her new role as Senior Policy Advisor for Higher Education to California Governor Gavin Newsom. Dr. Ajose will offer an uncompromising assessment of our region’s challenges and share a bold vision for a stronger, more inclusive and effective postsecondary system that meets the needs of all students – regardless of race, background, or circumstance. She will combine incisive analysis with her passion for educational equity and student success in concluding our exploration of “Provocative Questions, Courageous Answers.”

Lande Ajose
Senior Policy Advisor for Higher Education
State of California, Governor Gavin Newsom

Dr. Lande Ajose is the Senior Policy Advisor for Higher Education for Governor Gavin Newsom. In that role she is responsible for developing and shaping the Governor’s higher education policy agenda, which is focused on protecting college affordability, preserving college access, and increasing system efficiency in order to meet the state’s need for a skilled and educated workforce.  Prior to this appointment, she served as executive director of California Competes, a nonpartisan, nonprofit project that develops and advocates on behalf of policies to equitably boost California’s postsecondary degree attainment.  Her experience in higher education spans college admissions at Vassar College, education and workforce development funding at the James Irvine Foundation, and research and evaluation at MDRC, where she managed a comprehensive evaluation of the Achieving the Dream Initiative. An ardent advocate for college affordability, in 2014 she was appointed to the California Student Aid Commission (CSAC) by Governor Jerry Brown where she currently serves as chair. She also serves on the advisory committee for the Higher Education Policy Center at the Public Policy Institute of California.  She has served on boards of the Institute of College Access and Success (TICAS), the Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP) and, until her appointment to the Governor’s office, she was a WASC Senior College and University Commissioner. A graduate of Occidental College, she earned her master’s degree from the School of Public Affairs at UCLA and holds a PhD from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.