Photo Credit: Laurie Babcock at Pitzer College
Dr. Angel B. Pérez is an education administrator, author, speaker, teacher, and student advocate. With more than two decades’ experience in secondary and higher education leadership positions in the U.S., he is now recognized as a national thought leader, and sought after as an international speaker, on issues of educational equity and access in American education. Pérez’s work on behalf of underrepresented student populations echoes his own story. Growing up poor in Puerto Rico and the South Bronx, he went on to graduate from some of America’s most prestigious institutions and now dedicates his efforts to ensure that all who aspire to higher education have the opportunity to achieve.
Leadership: Pérez is a firm believer in the liberal arts as offering students the best preparation for an uncertain future. Currently, as Vice President for Enrollment and Student Success at Trinity College, Connecticut, he leads efforts in Admissions, Financial Aid, Career Development, Student Success, Retention, the Individualized Degree Program, and Posse Scholars. He also teaches in the Educational Studies Department and has overseen Institutional Research, Planning, and Strategy. He has transformed enrollment and campus culture by adopting values-based, student-centered strategies, including adopting a test-optional policy and using character in evaluation. To reduce the financial and administrative burden on the lowest income students, he dropped the application fee for first-generation students and created a four-year financial aid awarding system. As a result, Trinity has enjoyed its most diverse classes ever, with more students of color, first-generation students, and international students, as well as a surge in academic quality, yield, campus culture, and retention.
At Trinity, Pérez founded the Office of Student Success and revamped the Career Development Center, to help students find meaning and purpose in all aspects of their lives, as well as to prepare for the jobs of the future. He has introduced new integrated models for student retention and success, including design thinking courses and workshops, meaningful work programs, personalized advising, and innovative career preparation and exploration programming. For his work in this area Pérez was recently honored by the New England College Personnel Association.
In 2018, Pérez was chosen by the Gates Foundation and the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators to serve on Forward50, an Initiative to plan for the future of higher education in America and present solutions to Congress. In addition, he consults with various institutions of higher education to address challenges in mission alignment, enrollment, student success, and organizational change. In 2019, a Forbes Magazine article named him the greatest influencer in college admissions.
Service: Pérez is a Fulbright Alumnus and serves on its Scholar Peer Review Committee. In 2016, the Governor of Connecticut appointed him to the New England Board of Higher Education. He has also served as a Fellow at the Bowen Institute for Higher Education Policy and Chair of Deans for NESCAC (New England Small College’s Athletics Conference). Trusteeship roles include chair of diversity and inclusion at the Berkshire School in Massachusetts, development and fundraising for United World College in Costa Rica, and Hartford Youth Scholars in Connecticut. He serves on the Advisory Council of the Mastery Transcript, a group of schools creating a new high school transcript that reflects the unique skills of each learner. In 2001, he was elected the youngest Chair of Diversity in the history of Skidmore College’s alumni association.
Academics: Pérez teaches courses in Educational Studies and Design Thinking at Trinity, and is an International Visiting Faculty Member at Rikkyo University in Tokyo, Japan. Pérez continues to work with students on research projects in areas such as operationalization of institutional mission, college access, and student success. He has been published widely in both mainstream media and academic outlets. He holds a B.S. from Skidmore College, an M.A. from Columbia University, a PhD from Claremont Graduate University, and a Teaching Certification in Higher Education Pedagogy from the Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning at Harvard University.
Dr. Angel B. Pérez is frequently called upon by academic and media outlets to lend his voice on issues of higher education, college access, and success. Below you will find a brief selection of his articles, interviews and quotes.
Inside Higher Ed
Diverse: Issues In Higher Education
Parents League Review
The New England Journal of Higher Education
The Washington Post
The New England Journal of Higher Education
The Huffington Post: College
The Chronicle of Higher Education
Inside Higher Ed
The Los Angeles Times
WTNH News 8
The New York Times
The Admissions Leadership Podcast
National Associate for College Admission Counseling Podcast
WNPR Radio Interview
CBS Evening News Interview
Hartford Business Journal Interview
Photo Credit: Maureen Grabowski. Dr. Pérez with students in his Design Thinking course at Trinity College
Student Success for a New Generation
National Partnership for Educational Access Conference - Boston, MA
April 17, 2020
Anticipating Student Demographic Shifts
Association of Governing Boards - Washington DC
April 7, 2020
Bending the Arc of Human Potential
ASU & Global Silicon Valley Summit - San Diego, CA
April 1, 2020
The Future of Education and Human Capital
Arizona State University - Phoenix, AZ
January 14, 2020
The Journey to Higher Education
Cambridge School of Westin - Boston, MA
January 6, 2020
Hack the Gates: A Conversation with Paul Tough
National Education Association - Washington, DC
November 8, 2019
Social Mobility Through Education: A Conversation with Paul Tough
Trinity College - Hartford, CT
November 5, 2019
Cultivating Student Access and Success for a New Generation
Reach Higher Conference, Bridgewater State University - Bridgewater, MA
August 19, 2019
American Higher Education: An Industry & Nation at a Crossroads
Higher Education Consultants Association - Warwick, RI
June 19, 2019
The Future of Affirmative Action
Yale University Leadership Conference - New Haven, CT
April 5, 2019
The Future of Work
United World College, Singapore
March 18, 2019
The Challenges Facing Private Colleges
Inside Higher Ed Leadership Series - Washington DC
November 15, 2018
The University in Modern Society
Global Liberal Arts Program of Rikkyo University - Tokyo, Japan
Designing Student Success for a New Generation
Penn State University - Lemont Furnace, PA
June 7, 2018
Liberal Arts: Education for a Global Future
Office of Education USA/Fulbright - Kathmandu, Nepal
April 4, 2018
Photo Credit: The New York Times. Speaking about affirmative action in higher education at The New York Times.
To contact Dr. Pérez regarding inquiries or speaking requests, please use the form below. We will respond shortly.
"All of my years working with students from all over the globe have taught me that talent is universal, but opportunity is not. Education and political leaders must ensure that all students are given opportunities to succeed. This isn't a social justice issue, it's an issue of international prosperity. Any time a nation leaves some of its citizens behind, we all lose."
(Quote from Pérez Keynote Speech at the Consortium on High Achievement and Success)