Elsa M. Núñez, the president of Eastern Connecticut State University, has won a lifetime achievement award from the New England Board of Higher Education.

During her seven years at the public liberal arts college in Willimantic, Núñez has launched a program that allows the university to predict the academic success of its students and target support programs toward students. 

The New England Board reports that Eastern also has the highest percentage of minority faculty among all public and private colleges in Connecticut.

“This and other factors have enhanced the retention rates of underrepresented student populations, and have also resulted in Eastern achieving the largest gain in the six-year graduation rate of Latino students from 2004 through 2010,” reads a press release announcing the award.

Núñez, a Puerto Rican native, previously was an administrator at the University of Maine System, Lesley University and the City University of New York.

Jacqueline was CT Mirror’s Education and Housing Reporter, and an original member of the CT Mirror staff, joining shortly before our January 2010 launch. Her awards include the best-of-show Theodore A. Driscoll Investigative Award from the Connecticut Society of Professional Journalists in 2019 for reporting on inadequate inmate health care, first-place for investigative reporting from the New England Newspaper and Press Association in 2020 for reporting on housing segregation, and two first-place awards from the National Education Writers Association in 2012. She was selected for a prestigious, year-long Propublica Local Reporting Network grant in 2019, exploring a range of affordable and low-income housing issues. Before joining CT Mirror, Jacqueline was a reporter, online editor and website developer for The Washington Post Co.’s Maryland newspaper chains. Jacqueline received an undergraduate degree in journalism from Bowling Green State University and a master’s in public policy from Trinity College.

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