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Upcoming Events

Idealism Meets Reality in Urban Education: A Screening and Discussion of The New Public

Date: Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Time: 5 to 7:30 p.m.


Drexel University Campus
Gerri C. Lebow Hall
Grand Meeting Room 220
3220 Market Street

Philadelphia, PA  19104 

For virtual attendees, connect online on May 13th @ 5PM to join the event.

Reception and exhibit prior to the event.

The New Public, a provocative documentary by Jyllian Gunther, chronicles the educational journey of a principal, students, parents, and teachers, who were committed to creating “the ideal school.” The film demonstrates how critically important it is for education reformists to possess the agency necessary to influence complex social and systemic barriers that affect their school, the students’ families, and the community. Given the broader social landscape, school leaders, teachers, and families are in a fierce battle to achieve positive educational outcomes. The film invites us to consider the following question: How can schools ensure collaborative success versus battle fatigue?


Donyall D. Dickey, Ed.D.

Donyall DickeyDr. Donyall Dickey is a highly sought after authority on curriculum, instruction, organizational development, and administration of schools. Dickey’s 14-year career as a school leader is distinguished by the promotion of unparalleled levels of student achievement and school improvement, including the most significant gains on the Maryland School Assessment in 2008, outscoring more than 3,000 schools.

Dickey is the author of 32 published books on the new international Common Core State standards for English/Reading, Social Studies, Science, the Technical Subjects, and Mathematics.

His ideas for closing the achievement gap and accelerating learning are used in schools across the nation, making the goals of academic achievement attainable for millions of children. Dickey, a native of Houston, Texas is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, Loyola University – Maryland and he is months from earning a doctorate in Leadership & Policy from the George Washington University in the District of Columbia.


Yaba Blay, Ph.D.

Yaba ClayDr. Yaba Blay is a teacher-scholar of Africana Studies. As a researcher and ethnographer, she uses personal and social narratives to disrupt fundamental assumptions and expectations about cultures and identities. As a cultural worker and producer, she uses images to inform consciousness, incite dialogue, and inspire others to action and transformation.

Among her many publications, Blay’s ethnographic case study entitled “Pretty Color and Good Hair: Creole Women of New Orleans and the Politics of Identity” is featured as a chapter in the Hampton Press anthology Blackberries and Redbones: Critical Articulations of Black Hair/Body Politics in Africana Communities (2010). In addition to her many publications, she is an active editor, serving as a member of the Journal of Pan African Studies (JPAS) editorial board, a peer reviewer for Jenda: A Journal of Culture and African Women’s Studies, and has edited special issues of both Jenda and JPAS focused on skin bleaching in Africa and the Diaspora.

Professor Blay is the recipient of a 2010 Leeway Foundation Art and Change Grant through which she embarked upon her most recent multi-platform project, (1)ne Drop: Shifting the Lens on Race. Inclusive of a full-color portrait essay book (forthcoming), online exhibition, and traveling exhibition and lecture, (1)ne Drop explores the interconnected nuances of skin color politics and Black racial identity. In 2012, Dr. Blay served as a Consulting Producer for CNN Black in America 5 – “Who is Black in America?” – a television documentary inspired by the scope of the (1)ne Drop Project.

James Earl Davis, Ph.D.

James Earl DavisCurrently, Dr. Davis is a professor in the College of Education at Temple University. With primary appointments in higher education and urban education, he also holds secondary faculty appointments in the Department of African American Studies and the Women Studies Program. His research focuses on gender and schooling outcomes; men, boys and masculinity; sociology of higher education; and applied research methods. He is particularly interested in issues of access and equity in the educational pipeline as they are informed by gender, race, class, and the intersection of these social locations. His research agenda has been driven by reoccurring questions related to what we know about the social context of identity and how institutions (e.g., schools, college and universities, families, and communities) and policy (e.g., education reform, gender-based instruction and schools) are implicated in academic and social outcomes. He has had the opportunity to work with inspiring colleagues and graduate students who continue to refine my work and its impact. Currently, he has funding from the National Science Foundation for the project, STEMing the tide: Exploring factors related to males of color interest, engagement and achievement in mathematics and science. This project will facilitate the dissemination of the most recent research about identity and it relationship to science and mathematics achievement for boys and young men of color. He earned a B.A in sociology from Morehouse College and a Ph.D. from Cornell University.

Kristine S. Grant, Ph.D.

Kristine Lewis GrantDr. Kristine S. Grant is Associate Clinical Professor of Multicultural and Urban Education at Drexel University.  Her research interests include family engagement and multicultural education.  She is curious about the catalysts that transform active parents into parent activists.  Dr. Grant teaches graduate-level courses on multicultural education and family-school-community partnerships.  She also coordinates the family component of Drexel's Lindy Scholars Program – a comprehensive middle school mentoring program with three Philadelphia public schools.  In recognition of her work, Dr. Grant received the Mark S. Greenburg Distinguished Faculty Award for Community-Based Experiential Learning.  Dr. Grant sits on the board of Parent Power, a parent advocacy group in Philadelphia, and the Pennsylvania chapter of the National Association for Multicultural Education.  She has conducted participatory action research projects with parent-oriented organizations, and delivered several conference presentations related to this work.

Ana E. Nunez, M.D.

Ana NunezDr. Nunez, the Associate Dean of Urban Health Equity, Education and Research, Director of the Center of Excellence and Women’s Health Education Program and Professor of Medicine at Drexel University College of Medicine received her medical degree, completed her residency and chief residency at Hahnemann University in Philadelphia. Her post-graduate training includes fellowships in medical education at Michigan State University; health services research with Robert Wood Johnson; and, health policy from the Association of American Medical Colleges.   She also was a fellow in the Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine program.

As a nationally recognized medical educator, Dr. Núñez has developed novel curriculum for all levels of medical training. Her work was cited as an example of an effective curricular intervention in the Institute of Medicine’s report on Disparities in Heath Care. National, she has served as a consultant to a number of academic health centers – most recently as the David Satcher Visiting Professor at Vanderbilt University. Some of her curricular topics include primary health care, partner violence, sexual health, and cultural competency education.

She has served as the Principal Investigator for numerous health services research grants in women’s health and culturally effective health care including the U.S. Department of Education Fund for Improvement of Post-Secondary Education Grant for Disseminating Proven Reforms for her work in Women’s Health education and a NIH/National Heart Lung Blood Institute K award on cultural competency education.

Her current initiative DHHS-funded Coalition for a Healthier Community (Ujima 2.0) builds upon her a community empowerment entitled: Mind, Body, Spirit, Health – The Philadelphia Ujima Collaborative. This  project engages community partners and lay-health workers in a gender and trauma informed initiative to improve health in the Philadelphia region. The goal of Philadelphia Ujima is to help Philadelphians become better advocates for their health.

Dr. Núñez has numerous awards and honors. She was selected as one of fifty women leaders in Voices, a book designed to increase girl’s awareness of career options. She is a member of Alpha Omega Alpha, the medical honor society. She has been nominated for the Gold Foundation Humanism in Medicine award.  She has served in advisory capacity to the medical committee member of the Southeastern Pennsylvania Family Planning Council and to Congreso de Latinos Unidos. Dr. Núñez is a practicing general internist and her research interests include sex/gender health disparities education, girl’s and women’s health, minority women’s health and culturally effective care.