LINCROFT, NJ (April 7, 2016) – Matthew Reed, vice president for learning at Brookdale Community College, is one of a select group of educators from across the nation to be awarded the inaugural Aspen Presidential Fellowship for Community College Excellence.

The Aspen Institute, a nonpartisan educational and policy studies organization based in Washington, DC, announced today that Reed will be one of 40 outstanding community college leaders to join the first cohort of Aspen Presidential Fellows.

The fellowship, featuring a diverse group of educators from 30 colleges in 17 states, is a highly selective yearlong leadership program designed for recently appointed or aspiring community college presidents. Beginning in July, the fellows will participate in a series of intensive seminars and receive ongoing mentorship offered through Stanford University and community college leaders across the U.S.

According to Josh Wyner, executive director of the Aspen Institute’s College Excellence Program, the fellowship program will help address a pending gap in community college leadership, as the majority of sitting college presidents are expected to retire within the next decade.

“This class of remarkable fellows will expand the talent pipeline to the presidency at a time of dramatic presidential turnover and urgent need to improve student outcomes,” said Wyner. “These individuals are deeply committed to making a difference– they are eager to take bold action to help more students, especially those facing the greatest odds, earn credentials that reflect rigorous learning and lead to well-paying jobs.”

Reed, a Freehold resident, came to Brookdale in July 2015 after serving as vice president for academic affairs at Holyoke Community College in Massachusetts. He previously served as a dean with the County College of Morris in Randolph and DeVry University in North Brunswick, and as a faculty member at Kean University and Rutgers University. He earned a doctoral degree in political science from Rutgers in 1997.

In his first year at Brookdale, Reed has been a strong advocate for student-centered services and initiatives, working to expand local dual-enrollment programs, develop open educational resources for Brookdale courses and launching a free “e-tutoring” service that is now available to all students.

“The Aspen Institute has done groundbreaking work on student success, and through this fellowship I hope to learn new approaches that I can bring back to Brookdale,” said Reed. “I’m very grateful to receive this honor, and I’m excited to get to work.”

The inaugural Aspen Presidential Fellows are expected to complete the program by spring 2017.

The Aspen Presidential Fellowship for Community College Excellence is funded by the Carnegie Corporation of New York, Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation, ECMC Foundation, Greater Texas Foundation, the Joyce Foundation and the Kresge Foundation.