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Meena Naik is an associate director at JFF. Specializing in skills-based learning initiatives, she focuses on partnering with organizations and education providers to support the implementation of best practices in skills-based learning as a bridge between postsecondary education and careers.

Before joining JFF, Meena served as the program director for Career Connect at the University of North Texas, where she spearheaded UNT’s efforts with the marketable skills credential program and was the university’s comprehensive learner record architect. With over a decade of experience in higher education, she has held roles at several other institutions—including UC San Diego, Abilene Christian University, and Skyline College—supporting faculty and curriculum development, instructional design, student-facing academic support services, retention programs for minoritized students, and traditional student affairs programming.

Additionally, Meena holds a variety of leadership roles within the Shia Ismaili Muslim community, most recently serving as the program director for the College Program on Islam, a nationwide academic initiative.

She says she was drawn to JFF because the organization’s position at the intersection of workforce, policy, and education offers her an opportunity collaborate with passionate thought leaders and “channel my passion to promote transparency and equity in education toward a greater vision of transforming the infrastructure of how we work, learn, and grow through our careers.”

Meena is a doctoral candidate in educational psychology at the University of North Texas. She has a master’s degree in higher education and student development from Drexel University, and a bachelor’s in physiology and neuroscience from UC San Diego.

“If I can escape my work, volunteer, and student life,” she says, “I enjoy hiking, swimming, and boxing. I also enjoy endlessly re-watching episodes of Friends and Harry Potter movies, and I am more of a Trekkie than I care to admit.