About AdvanceEDU

A New College Experience

AdvanceEDU is an innovative, new kind of college experience in Colorado.

Our unique approach relies on partnerships with trusted, nonprofit universities. They provide our students affordable access to their degree programs, and we provide all the things that students need to be successful: a deeply supported onboarding process, personalized coaching and supports in our Denver campus, and a community of caring staff and peers that will be with them every step of the way. 

This approach means students can pursue their degree and build their career at the same time, even while working or supporting family.

College and career success doesn’t have to fall on your shoulders alone.

Our students thrive because we make college and the path towards a career a joint venture – between the student and our staff. Our students commit to earning a college degree and exploring career pathways. Our staff commit to helping students navigate a path forward by providing a personal Success Coach, academic support, and a unique co-learning location – all aimed at helping students succeed.

Founded in 2020, AdvanceEDU is a team approach to college and career that propels students forward.

Our Team

Lauren Trent

Lauren Trent

Chief Executive Officer
Lauren Trent is the Chief Executive Officer of AdvanceEDU. Lauren has been building college and career experiences aimed at reversing patterns of economic and academic inequity for more than a decade. Most recently, Lauren was the Executive Director for Innovation and Strategic Alliances for the Career and College Success team at Denver Public Schools, where she oversaw the growth of key strategic programming including the district’s nationally-recognized DPS CareerConnect programming. Prior to that she was on the founding leadership team at CareerWise Colorado, where she helped launch Colorado’s first-of-its-kind youth apprenticeship system. Prior to that, Lauren led consulting projects for more than 20 colleges and universities across the country as an engagement manager at Huron Consulting Group. Lauren has a bachelor’s degree in finance from Indiana University, an MBA in Strategy and Social Enterprise from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, and a Masters in Education Leadership through the Broad Residency in Urban Education.
Anthony DeLaRosa

Anthony DeLaRosa

Head of Partnerships & Strategy

Anthony has a deep commitment to developing, improving and sustaining equitable education systems. He has served in various roles in pursuit of an educational landscape that responds to student and community needs including Senior Manager of Innovation Programs at Denver Public Schools and Chief of Staff, Elected Leadership at Leadership for Educational Equity. Anthony started his career at the United States Student Association where he worked as a community organizer running higher education access and affordability campaigns around the country. At AdvanceEDU, Anthony is committed to building a postsecondary model that is low-to-no debt, accessible, career-relevant and equitable. Anthony believes that education and career are a joint venture, and if we provide students the right opportunities and personalized support we will dramatically improve college attainment rates and career success. Anthony grew up in Bloomington, MN and holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Colorado at Boulder.

Holly Armstrong

Holly Armstrong

Head of Student Success

Holly is passionate about helping students thrive in education, career, and life. She has held multiple roles dedicated to building high-quality programs that promote equity for all students and communities. Prior to AdvanceEDU, she led an academic support program as Coordinator of Supplemental Instruction at Metropolitan State University of Denver. As the Assistant Director of College Completion for PelotonU, she helped create innovative student support resources and programming for the emerging hybrid college sector. Before PelotonU, she worked in various PK-12 roles coaching district leaders and teachers, overseeing curriculum and instruction, and creating remedial reading programs. Holly, a native Texan, graduated from Austin College and received her Master’s in Teaching from Marian University and her Master’s in Language and Literacy from Harvard Graduate School of Education. She hopes to help shape the future of higher education through AdvanceEDU’s dynamic, flexible, and career-relevant approach to supporting students.

Vanessa Roman

Head of Outreach

Vanessa has dedicated her career to helping all students access higher education and postsecondary opportunities. She has over 10 years of experience in education where she has served in a variety of roles to promote higher education access to Colorado’s students. Prior to AdvanceEDU, Vanessa was the Associate Director of Admissions at the University of Colorado Boulder where she led efforts to enroll the largest and most diverse first-year class in the university’s history, 7 years in a row. Raised in Pueblo, Colorado as the granddaughter of immigrants and daughter of educators, Vanessa developed her values early in life and believes in the power of education to lift up individuals and communities. Vanessa earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology and Master’s Degree in Educational Foundations, Practices and Policy from the University of Colorado Boulder. She is committed to working with students to help them find the right fit for their higher education path at AdvanceEDU.

Alejandra Dominguez

Success Coach

Alejandra was born and raised in Caracas, Venezuela and grew up in South Florida. Her commitment to equity in education is rooted in her own experiences as a first-generation immigrant to the United States and in what she has learned through her work with high school and college students. Alejandra has had the opportunity to support student success in several roles, including as an AmeriCorps Student Engagement Advocate, College Advisor, and Graduate Assistant. Through her role at AdvanceEDU, Alejandra hopes to work alongside students as they circumvent the aspects of higher education that do not support their success to instead pursue a path that allows them to reach their goals feeling whole, empowered, and ready to enact positive change in their own lives, communities, and the world. Alejandra holds a BA in Earth and Environmental Science from Columbia University and an MS in Student Affairs in Higher Education from Colorado State University.
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