Jeff Wagnitz is currently in his eighth year as vice president for academic affairs at Highline College, south of Seattle. For the prior eight years, he served as Highline’s dean of instruction for transfer and pre-college education.
To serve its large immigrant community, Highline enrolls over 5,000 adults annually in English as a Second Language — the largest cohort of any community college in Washington. Over the years, the college has augmented its adult ESL programs with integrated career-technical courses, community-based family literacy partnerships, transition-to-college courses and services, and high school completion programs for new arrivals. Highline also hosts the Pacific Northwest’s only Welcome Back Center. The college received the Advancing Diversity Award of Excellence from the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) in 2014, as well as the Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) award in 2013, 2014 and 2015.
Jeff earned his doctorate in Educational Leadership from University of Washington Tacoma. Before he left teaching for administrative work, he taught developmental English. In that role, he was twice named Educator of the Year by the Washington Association for Developmental Education. He recently completed a term as president of the state’s Instruction Commission and has served as an evaluation team chair and trainer for the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.