Heather Jenkins
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Heather Jenkins

Chief People & Equity Officer

Heather Jenkins is the Chief People & Equity Officer at uAspire where she is responsible for ensuring that uAspire’s people, equity and organizational culture work is done with a people-first mindset to drive retention, inclusivity and sustainability. She joined the organization in May 2018 as the first Vice President of Equity. Prior to joining uAspire, Heather was the Managing Director of Service Impact and Evaluation at City Year Boston where she oversaw all aspects of the organization's service in the Boston Public Schools. Previously, she was the Director of High School Prep and the Director of Academics and Program Evaluation for Buffalo Prep, an education nonprofit serving historically underrepresented young people in grades 5-12.
Heather has a BA in psychology, an MS in education, a Ph.D. in sociology of education, and is also New York State certified in district leadership. She has 19 years of experience working for equity and access in education including: teacher and administrator at the K-12 level; diversity and equity consultant for secondary and postsecondary institutions; public and private school college readiness education consultant; mentor to students of color and economically marginalized youth; and an adjunct instructor for several teacher education and educational opportunity programs in western New York. Heather has published several articles on educational equity and co-authored a book titled, “Class Warfare: Class and Race in Affluent and Elite Secondary Schools.” Heather is the proud mother of two young women, one in college and one in graduate school.

Why uAspire?

College affordability is one of the most pressing racial equity and educational equity issues in the U.S. I deeply appreciate uAspire's approach to working with students to provide individual support, while working toward systemic and policy change. Further, once I met the people at uAspire I knew that working with them would be an opportunity to build strong relationships with mission-driven colleagues, relationships that would foster new personal and professional growth and learning.