Nicole F. Hurd, Ph.D., is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of College Advising Corps (CAC). Under her leadership, CAC has grown into the largest college access program in the country and received many accolades for its innovative work, including the 2012 National Service Impact Award from the Corporation for National and Community Service and a $10 million investment announced at the 2014 White House College Opportunity Summit.
Recognized nationally as a leader in the field of college access and success, Dr. Hurd was honored as a White House Champion of Change for College Opportunity in September 2016. She has appeared on the Charlie Rose Show and was named to Washington Monthly’s 2016 list of the most innovative people in higher education and the Chronicle of Higher Education’s 2014 Influence List.
Prior to launching College Advising Corps, Nicole served as an Assistant Dean and Director of the Center for Undergraduate Excellence at the University of Virginia. While there, she founded the College Guide Program that was the precursor to College Advising Corps. The College Guide Program received national attention and a $10 million grant from the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation to expand into 10 additional states. Because of the growth and success of College Guides, Nicole was awarded the Governor of Virginia’s Award for Volunteerism and Community Service in 2007.
While at the University of Virginia, Nicole taught in the Department of Religious Studies, worked with successful Rhodes, Marshall, Mitchell, Fulbright, and Truman Scholar candidates, and led the first university-wide Office of Undergraduate Research. Nicole’s work has resulted in the following honors: 2014 Honorary Hesburgh Yusko Scholar, 2013 Excellence in Education Award given by the National Association for College Admission Counseling, 2012 Robert E. Bryan Public Service Award from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Center for Public Service, 2012 Executive Leadership Award of Excellence from the National College Access Network, 2011 American Marshall Memorial Fellow, and 2007 Faculty Award Recipient for the University of Virginia’s Raven Society.
The co-author of “Helping Students Navigate the Path to College: What High Schools Can Do,” a publication of the US Department of Education, Nicole holds a Ph.D. in Religious Studies from the University of Virginia, a Master’s degree from Georgetown University, and a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Notre Dame. She serves on the Advisory Board of the Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy at the University of Virginia and lives in Chapel Hill, North Carolina (and airplanes) with her husband and their two children.