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Headshot Dr. Paula Pitcher

Dr. Paula

Holistic Student Supports Coach

Dr. Paula Pitcher is a holistic student supports coach at Achieving the Dream. She has over twenty years of experience in higher education serving in a broad span of executive and administrative roles. In 2017–18, she was selected as an Aspen Presidential Fellow, engaging in dialogue with both aspiring and recognized community college leaders on local, state, and national student success challenges. She served in roles in enrollment management, research and planning, where she led various campus-wide strategic planning initiatives. Her focus has been on strategic recruitment, onboarding pathways and enrollment management initiatives that enhance the student experience. She enjoys working with students on the front line, learning more about current challenges to provide viable solutions that foster success. Dr. Pitcher has also served in assessment, grant development, human resources, accreditation, and finance, and has taught as an adjunct professor.

In her current role, Dr. Pitcher assists colleges in developing equitable supports that improve the student experience, and on improving institutional outcomes with intentional student support reform. She also serves as a data coach for colleges in New Mexico, North Carolina, and Mississippi.


D.M. (Community College Policy and Administration) | University of Maryland Global Campus

M.B.A. and B.S. | Bethel University

A.A.S. | Texas State Technical College

Past Experience

Vice President, Enrollment Management | Delaware County Community College

Senior Advisor to the Commissioner | Massachusetts Department of Higher Education

Vice President Enrollment Management | Middlesex Community College

Assistant Dean Research and Planning | Atlantic Cape Community College

Adjunct Faculty | Wilmington University, Southwestern Michigan College

How has education changed your life/your family?

In eleventh grade, my high school guidance counselor asked me to prepare for life after graduation. I expected her to provide me with college applications, but instead she provided me with local service-level job applications. I did not know it at the time, but I had been labeled as someone who did not belong in college despite my “honors” status. A few years later, I was a single parent of two. I decided to drive myself to the community college but remember being scared to get out of the car thinking I would not fit in. With the support of a dedicated college staff member, I was able complete an associate degree within two years. This changed my life dramatically. Since then, I have been a strong advocate for minoritized students and have worked to support and encourage them through college and on to meaningful careers. Everyone deserves access to college, and community colleges provide that access. Education changes lives.

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