President and CEO of UNCF Joins Handshake Board of Directors to Help Close Gap Between Education and Employment

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Monique LeNoir UNCF Communications 202.810.0231

The #1 career platform for Generation Z appoints Dr. Michael L. Lomax to drive improved economic outcomes of higher education and expand job opportunity for disadvantaged students

Handshake, the largest early career network helping millions of students from all backgrounds launch their careers, today announced the appointment of Dr. Michael L. Lomax to its board of directors. As president and CEO of UNCF, the nation’s largest and most effective minority education organization, Lomax’s expertise in college readiness and education reform will help shape Handshake’s ongoing work to build more equitable career paths for young people.

“Dr. Lomax’s leadership experience and values align with our ambitious mission to close the gap between education and employment in order to unlock a more equitable future,” said Garrett Lord, Handshake’s founder and CEO. “Together, we’re working to ensure that anyone—regardless of race, background or social capital—can start, restart or jumpstart their way into purposeful, high-paying careers.”

Handshake logoHandshake brings together 18 million students and alumni from 1,400 colleges and universities, including 200 minority serving institutions and 62 historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs). On Handshake, more than over 600,000 employers can connect and authentically build relationships with a diverse pool of candidates: In 2021 alone, Handshake’s network of 1.2 million Black students exchanged over 10 million messages with employers.

“Ensuring that all students have equal access to social capital and economic security requires deep engagement from a cross-section of colleges, students and employers. Handshake is the only place where everyone comes together with the collective goal of democratizing career opportunity,” said Lomax. “I am thrilled to help Handshake build a more inclusive ecosystem that prepares students for the jobs of today and careers of tomorrow.”

Lomax has served as president and CEO of UNCF, the nation’s largest private provider of scholarships and other educational support to African American students, since 2004. Under his leadership, UNCF has helped more than 110,000 students earn college degrees and launch careers. UNCF also introduced the Institute for Capacity Building, which helps UNCF’s member HBCUs become stronger, more effective and more self-sustaining. Lomax also actively leads UNCF in the fight to further advance HBCUs with Congress, the Biden administration and the U.S. Department of Education.

For additional information about Handshake, please visit

Handshake is the largest early career network, helping millions of students from all backgrounds get hired and launch their careers with no connections, experience, or luck required. The Handshake community includes 18 million students and young alumni from 1,400 educational institutions including four-year colleges, community colleges, boot camps, and 290+ minority-serving institutions. Its platform connects up-and-coming talent across all 50 states with 600,000+ employers recruiting on Handshake – from every Fortune 500 company to thousands of small businesses, nonprofits, startups, and more. 


UNCF (United Negro College Fund) is the nation’s largest and most effective minority education organization. To serve youth, the community and the nation, UNCF supports students’ education and development through scholarships and other programs, supports and strengthens its 37 member colleges and universities, and advocates for the importance of minority education and college readiness. UNCF institutions and other historically Black colleges and universities are highly effective, awarding nearly 20% of African American baccalaureate degrees. UNCF administers more than 400 programs, including scholarship, internship and fellowship, mentoring, summer enrichment, and curriculum and faculty development programs. Today, UNCF supports more than 60,000 students at over 1,100 colleges and universities across the country. Its logo features the UNCF torch of leadership in education and its widely recognized trademark, ‟A mind is a terrible thing to waste.”® For continuous updates and news, follow UNCF on Twitter at @UNCF.