Kourtney Cockrell

Kourtney Cockrell


Kourtney Cockrell joined the Division of Student Affairs in November 2014 as the Inaugural Director of Student Enrichment Services. In this role, Kourtney created a central hub for students coming from first-generation, low-income, and/or undocumented backgrounds.

For close to 20 years, Kourtney has worked with organizations to increase access and opportunity for young people from traditionally overlooked backgrounds. For seven years, she worked with The Posse Foundation in both the Chicago and National offices. Kourtney also directed the Project EXCITE program through the Center for Talent Development at Northwestern University, a program focused on closing the achievement gap in Evanston. Within the world of Diversity Recruitment, Kourtney worked as an Admissions Officer for the full-time MBA program at the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business, for McMaster-Carr as the National Diversity Recruiting Manager, and in talent management with Alumni Relations and Development at Northwestern University.

Kourtney recently founded the FGLI Consortium, a national organization, providing leadership, expertise, and resources around the experience of first-generation and/or low-income college students at highly selective universities and colleges. She is also a member of the Diversity Council at Northwestern University and is on the Board of Open Communities, a Fair Housing nonprofit in Chicago. Kourtney earned her BA in African-American Studies and Sociology at the University of Michigan and her MS in Learning and Organizational Change from the School of Education and Social Policy at Northwestern. She has expertise in college access, social justice education, organizational change, nonprofit management, and talent management.

Outside of work, Kourtney facilitates workshops and trainings on diversity, inclusion and equity. Kourtney is also a proud first-generation college student and identifies as Black and Jewish. Fun fact – Kourtney comes out of the “Golden Age of Hip Hop” and some of her favorite artists include: A Tribe Called Quest, The Roots, Mos Def, Lauryn Hill, and De La Soul.