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SDHE Alumna Appointed Orange Coast College President

Published December 16, 2019

Congratulations to Dr. Angelica Suarez, who was recently appointed as President at Orange Coast College (OCC). A College of Education alumna who earned her master’s degree in Counseling, Student Development in Higher Education, Dr. Suarez looks forward to, “working collectively with [Orange Coast College’s] community of educators to build upon the [their] high standard of excellence, shared values, and…strong commitment to holistic student support, nurturing an inclusive environment where all students have the opportunity to succeed.”

Angelica Suarez
Dr. Angelica Suarez

A first-generation student herself, Dr. Suarez found her path in higher education through community college. As a high school student, Dr. Suarez's goal was to support her family, however a presentation by a community college representative inspired her to enroll in a certificate program. The college representative’s words and memory of receiving her first college ID card still resonate deeply with Suarez. “To this day, when I recall that experience, the sense of empowerment I felt knowing that I was now a college student, it was transformative. While not familiar with the path I was entering, I knew it signified an important milestone in my life (and that of my family). One that would change the course of our lives.”

Dr. Suarez’s career path was borne from her first experience as a college student and later as a community college employee. She shares advice to anyone thinking of pursuing a career in education or higher education, “…Remember the transformative power that education plays in the lives of families and communities. These beliefs are grounded in my own educational experiences. As a young immigrant from Mexico, and first-generation college student, the community college and CSULB provided me with an opportunity to break tradition, and start a new tradition, one that is firmly rooted in higher education as a foundation for changing the trajectory of families, and communities.”