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About APLU

Christel Perkins, Ed.D.

Christel Perkins, Ed.D.
Deputy Executive Director, Coalition of Urban Serving Universities (USU) & Assistant Vice President, APLU


  • April 1, 2020
  • APLU’s Christel Perkins, Melissa Rivas, and Lynn Brabender led a session on new approaches for achieving equitable student outcomes at College Complete America’s Annual Convening in mid-December. Their session explored the work of APLU’s Powered by Publics initiative.

Christel Perkins is Deputy Executive Director, Coalition of Urban Serving Universities (USU) & Assistant Vice President, APLU. In this role, she facilitates collaboration across multiple institutions, fostering creative problem-solving around the coalition’s priorities of student success and health disparities.

In this role, she leads the Collaborative Opportunity Grant, which focuses on university-city partnerships to address community needs, such as basic needs, healthcare access, and well-being. Additionally, she leads the Advancing Racial Justice and Equity pitch competitions and convenings. Finally, she designed and launched the Partnerships for Adult Learner Success program, facilitating collaboration across institutions, and fostering creative strategies to address systemic inequity and improve outcomes for Black, Latinx and Indigenous adult learners.

Christel has a deep knowledge of institutional programming, project implementation, and student and faculty engagement gained through her experiences across the higher education landscape. She has over 10 years of experience in higher education managing privately and federally-funded projects, both within universities, and non-profit organizations. Christel holds a masters from the University of Pennsylvania and an Ed.D. from Widener University in which her research explored the participation and perceived impacts of students of color who study abroad.