Director for bridges Multicultural Resource Center and Recruitment and Retention Centers
From the Mid-City neighborhood of Tovangaar in the Los Angeles Basin, Jose Fernandez (they/he) is excited about returning to UC Berkeley as the new Director of the bridges Multicultural Resource Center.
This community played a significant role in influencing Jose’s decision to pursue higher education professionally and academically. His approach as a student affairs scholar-practitioner is shaped by his experiences as a first-generation, low-income student of color at UC Berkeley and UCLA (B.A. Ethnic Studies; M.Ed. Student Affairs).
While at Cal as an undergraduate, Jose held leadership roles at the Raíces Recruitment & Retention Center and later served as the Operations Director for bridges. During this period, Jose led the development and successful passage of the Student Transformation through Academic Recruitment and Retention (STARR) referendum, supporting the long-term sustainability of the bridges coalition.
Since graduating from Cal, they have worked in higher education and college access, leading postsecondary outreach and retention initiatives with organizations such as UC Berkeley Destination College Advising Corps, UCLA Alumni Diversity Programs & Initiatives, and Alliance College-Ready Public Schools. In their graduate studies at UCLA’s Master in Student Affairs program, Jose focused on understanding the possibilities of partnerships between student-initiated recruitment and retention programs and student affairs practitioners. Jose looks forward to supporting bridges students, campus staff, and faculty in creating a more equitable and just experience for all members of the UC Berkeley community.