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APLU Staff Profile: Julia Michaels

Name: Julia Michaels
Department: Center for Public University Transformation
Title: Director
Date you joined APLU: December 10, 2012

Why did you want to work at APLU? I wanted to make college a reality for more Americans, and APLU members are the universities most committed to the goals of access, completion, and equity. They’re elite without being elitist. And they’re focused on expanding opportunity rather than shutting people out.

What motivates you to work in higher education? Sometimes it’s hard to stay motivated when you’re buried under a pile of documents and emails, but I try to keep in mind that our work will have an impact in the long run. The students on college campuses 10-20 years from now will have more diverse backgrounds, create more value, and stand a better chance of success in their careers and life than students today.

What are you most proud of during your time at APLU? Talking to folks at over 130 member campuses in less than four months while organizing the cluster initiative. It required some scheduling jujitsu, but I really learned a lot about each campus and their work.

What was your dream job as a child? President of the United States. It’s not completely off the table, but I’m probably not the best person for the role.

What’s the first thing you do when you look at your phone in the morning? I check the @IsMetroOnFire Twitter feed to make sure I can get to work safely.

What’s the last book you read? “Behave: The Biology of Humans at Our Best and Worst”

What’s one thing people would never guess about you? I’m a certified crisis worker and have been staffing the local suicide hotline every Sunday for the past 5 years.

Learn more about Julia.

  • Degree Completion & Student Success

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