Writing Race and Education History on the Web

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Thanks to Brian Croxall, Digital Humanities Librarian at Brown University, for inviting Matt Delmont (Arizona State University), Esther Cyna (with Ansley Erickson at Teachers College, Columbia University), and me to present work from our digital book projects on November 4th, 2016. See notes and links on our public Google Doc, my presentation slides, plus this video recording of our session.

Abstract: This panel contrasts how historians of race and education are authoring three digital books on the web, which raises provocative questions about the future of scholarly communication. Historian Matthew Delmont created open-access companion websites to accompany both of his recent books published by the University of California Press: The Nicest Kids in Town (http://NicestKids.com/) and Why Busing Failed (http://WhyBusingFailed.com). Jack Dougherty and his contributors are creating On The Line: How Schooling, Housing, and Civil Rights Shaped Hartford and its Suburbs, a digital-first, open-access book with interactive maps and oral history videos, under contract with Amherst College Press (http://OnTheLine.trincoll.edu). Ansley Erickson and Esther Cyna and their colleagues are producing Educating Harlem, a digital history project in two interconnected parts that mix elements of traditional publishing with web-based open-access scholarship.

North Hartford Promise Zone – AmeriCorps VISTA Positions

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NHPZ-AmeriCorps-VISTA-flyerPromise Zones are an initiative started by President Obama to give some communities battling poverty a leg up in making lasting change. In 2015, North Hartford became one of only 22 promise zones to be named in the entire country. As we begin our second year with the North Hartford Promise Zone designation we would like to share information regarding the exciting North Hartford Promise Zone AmeriCorps VISTA service opportunities that are available.  Currently, the North Hartford Promise Zone is seeking candidates who are interested in serving as North Hartford Promise Zone AmeriCorps VISTA members. 

 As part of the Promise Zones initiative, AmeriCorps VISTA members are available to each Promise Zone community.  AmeriCorps VISTA is a national service program designed to alleviate poverty.  Members make a year-long, full-time commitment to serve on a specific project at a nonprofit organization or public agency. They focus their efforts to build the organizational, administrative, and financial capacity of organizations that fight illiteracy, improve health services, foster economic development, and otherwise assist low-income communities.  We are looking for people who are passionate about the promise zone community, organized, and who have good writing and computer skills.

 As part of their year of service, VISTA members receive the following benefits:

  • $456 bimonthly living allowance (approximately, before taxes);
  • $5,775 Education Award voucher -OR- $1,500 cash stipend;
  • Childcare assistance, if eligible;
  • Healthcare benefits

Please feel free to post, share and email the opportunities with networks and others. 

Communications VISTA job posting — Increase community involvement and coordinate communication

Data VISTA job posting — Gather + analyze data and research best practices

Policy Coordinator VISTA job postings (2) — Lead and guide collaborative efforts

To apply: visit https://my.americorps.gov/mp/login.do

For more information, contact: 

Logan Singerman
NHPZ AmeriCorps VISTA Leader
City of Hartford
550  Main Street | Room 305
Hartford, CT 06103
O: (860) 757-9508
E: logan.singerman@hartford.gov


Pathways to Teaching with Trinity students and alumni, Wed Oct 5th, 2016

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Both virtual (via video conference) and physical panelists
Both virtual (via video conference) and physical panelists at our Pathways to Teaching discussion

Curious about teaching in a K-12 school after Trinity?
Feeling overwhelmed by different options and programs?
Come join us for a panel discussion:

Pathways to Teaching with Trinity Students & Recent Alumni
Wednesday, October 5th, 2016, 6:30-7:30pm in Rittenberg Lounge, Mather Hall

Listen and learn from current Trinity students and recent alumni who have followed different pathways to teaching. Guests will appear in person and via video conference to share their stories, explain the decisions each of them made, and offer their advice. Professor Jack Dougherty will moderate the discussion and refer to the Pathways to Teaching advising web pages hosted by the Educational Studies Program. If you missed this event, see video below.

Guest panelists:

Long-Sophie-150x150Sophie Long ’17 is finishing her degree in mathematics. This fall, she also is completing her secondary school certification as a full-time student teacher in a New Britain CT public school, through the cross-campus consortium with the University of Saint Joseph in West Hartford. Learn more about teacher preparation at USJ.

McQuaidLizzyElizabeth (Lizzy) McQuaid ’16 graduated with a bachelor’s degree in psychology. She began her secondary school certification program in mathematics through the consortium at the University of Saint Joseph, and this fall is finishing by student teaching full-time at Manchester High School. Learn more about teacher preparation at USJ.

Meehan-EmilyEmily Meehan ’16 graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Educational Studies. She is a Teach for America corps member and currently works as a 6th grade English/Language Arts teacher at Blackstone Valley Prep Middle School 1 in Central Falls, Rhode Island. Learn more about Teach for America.

Rollins-ElainaElaina Rollins ’16 completed her bachelor’s degree in Educational Studies. She currently teaches 2nd grade at Achievement First North Brooklyn Prep Elementary School in Brooklyn, New York and is working toward her master’s degree in childhood education from the Relay Graduate School of Education. Learn more about Achievement First Teachers in Residence program.

Armendariz-VeronicaVeronica Armendariz ’16 completed her bachelor’s degree in Educational Studies. She currently is a paraprofessional and 12th grade advisor at Chicago Bulls College Prep in Chicago, IL, and is working toward her master’s degree in secondary mathematics from the Relay Graduate School of Education. Learn more about the Noble-Relay Teaching Residency program.

Shaw-ZulekyaZuleyka Shaw ’06 graduated with a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry, then completed her secondary teacher certification while earning a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from the University of Connecticut in 2009. She has taught in several public schools in Hartford, and currently is an 8th grade science teacher at the Hartford Magnet Trinity College Academy. Learn more about teacher preparation at UConn.

Voight-JessJess Voight ’17 is completing her major in biomedical engineering, with a minor in models and data. This past summer, she was one of 12 students from around the nation who gained first-hand experience as science educators at the Hartford Magnet Trinity College Academy, with training and financial support from the National Science Foundation – Teaching Experiences for Undergraduates program. Learn more about the NSF-TEU intern program.

Questions for panelists:

  • We all start at different places in life, and everyone follows their own path. What decisions did you make about pathways to teaching, and why?
  • What’s one piece of advice that you wish someone had shared with you during your earlier years as a Trinity student?

Video part 1

Video part 2

Past events with Trinity students and alumni

Friendly advice for your history conference panel

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As summer ends, the fall academic conference season begins. This time of year I find myself writing the same email to panelists for whom I’ve been assigned to serve as chair and/or discussant at the History of Education Society meeting in November. So this year I’ll also share it as a blog post to make the process more transparent, and encourage others to comment and share their own approach or advice, which may differ from mine. 

Dear panelists,

Looking forward to serving as chair and discussant on your HES panel in November. We’ll proceed in the order listed on the program unless your group tells me otherwise.

Some friendly advice:

1) Although the program chair instructed you to send me your writing by the beginning of October, feel free to extend that date to October 15th, because I won’t be looking at your writing until then. But this extension is a hard deadline, and panelists who miss it will not receive any prepared feedback from me.

2) Please send your writing to the entire panel to share your thinking, spark ideas, and promote discussion.

3) In addition, send us a 2-sentence bio, and more importantly, the context and trajectory of your writing, to help us understand how it fits into your academic plans. Do you envision this as part of a dissertation chapter, and/or journal article, and/or book project? Is it brand-new or near completion? Knowing this ahead of time helps me to frame my comments, which I usually gear toward helping panelists bring their work to the next step.

4) Everyone has their own style, but I support this recent email from program chair Jackie Blount: “It is better to prepare a talk than to read a paper verbatim.” So feel free to share your thinking about how you plan to do this. For example, it’s perfectly acceptable to send us a 25-page essay, with a note stating that you’ll prepare a talk about pages 1-4 and 10-15. Similarly, it’s also acceptable to send us an essay and presentation slides that outline your talk about that essay.

5) Aim to deliver your talk in less than the allotted time. Everyone loves a concise and focused presentation. And everyone feels embarrassed when a speaker who runs over needs to be interrupted by the chair, so let’s prevent that from happening. [The HES program chair states that sessions with 4 papers, allow no more than 10 minutes each; 3 papers, allow no more than 15 minutes each.]

6) Whether or not you choose to present digital slides or materials depends on your judgment about the best way to deliver your talk, which varies with content, setting, and personal preference.  I’ve seen both wonderful and dreadful presentations, both with and without slides. But if you plan to use a projector [which HES is providing in selected rooms this year], then set up your laptop and connecting cables in advance, and coordinate with other panelists to share equipment and avoid time swapping out hardware. Furthermore, if you present digital slides, consider hosting them on the web (perhaps with Dropbox or Google Drive) and insert a short link or Twitter handle on the first slide, so that audience members (or people who could not attend) may download them later. Years ago I shifted from PowerPoint to Google Slides to make this process even easier.

Let me know if you have any questions.


Wanted: Trinity students with bikes for short video, Sept 24th

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Above: A different short video I recorded with the “Cycling, Sustainability & Hartford” First-Year Seminar. Not related to the event below, but still fun to watch.

The short version:

Wanted: Trinity students with bikes

What: Appear in a short video, on campus, with Professor Jack Dougherty

When: Saturday, September 24th, 2016 from 10 to 10:30am

Where: Vernon Street, near the Broad Street gate, Trinity College

Why: Eternal fame in a soon-to-be viral video, plus free cider and donuts

And if you’re curious, here’s the longer version: Trinity College has funded me to create a free online course, “Data Visualization for All,” to be distributed on the edX platform in February 2017. This course builds on a successful internship seminar where Trinity students co-create interactive charts and maps for the web, in partnership with Hartford community groups. When David Tatem and I brainstormed about how to communicate the course vision in a two-minute video, we dreamed up the idea a bicycle ride — my favorite mode of transportation — to tie together different scenes that we’re shooting with community partners around the City of Hartford. The final scene brings us back to the Trinity campus, specifically at the Broad Street gate on Vernon, where we need as many bike riders as possible to swarm in and shout out the closing line. So if you have two wheels — or can borrow some — come and join us!

Welcome Jamie McPike, Associate Director of Community Learning at Trinity College

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Jamie McPike, Associate Director of Community Learning,
Jamie McPike, Associate Director of Community Learning at Trinity College

My Trinity colleagues and I are delighted to welcome Jamie McPike as the Associate Director of our long-standing Community Learning Initiative. At Trinity, CLI enriches our liberal arts curriculum with experiential learning in the city. Since 1994, faculty and students have created academic partnerships with more than 250 local organizations across the Hartford region, involving almost all of Trinity’s departments and programs, and enrolling about half of our undergraduate population.

As a Hartford resident and PhD candidate in Sociology at Brown University, Jamie brings rich experience as a teacher, researcher, and organizer of community engagement. Last spring she taught an innovative course, Engaged Research/Engaged Publics, which collaborated with the City of Providence to explore challenges faced by small businesses. She and her collaborators described their process in two essays that recently appeared the Huffington Post (Communicating Innovation and Little Data, Big Solutions).

Jamie also designed a two-week course on Storytelling for Social Change for the Brown University Summer Leadership Institute that enriched students’ skills in traditional and digital media. Furthermore, she received a National Science Foundation dissertation grant for her sociological study of low-income housing policy in Bangalore, India. Learn more about these and other projects at her personal website: http://www.jamielynnmcpike.com.

We encourage Trinity faculty, staff, students, and community partners to connect with Jamie and discuss ways to strengthen our academic connections with Hartford. After she begins her new job at Trinity on September 19th, contact her via email (jamie.mcpike@trincoll.edu) or phone (860-297-2583).

Hartford school orientations with Trinity Educ 200 students

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Orientation with coordinator Erin Doyle (3rd from left) at ELAMS.
Trinity Educ 200 orientation with coordinator Erin Doyle (3rd from left) at ELAMS.

When I teach the introductory Educ 200: Analyzing Schools course at Trinity College, one of my favorite parts is introducing my students to different Hartford schools where we place them for their weekly participant-observation sessions with classroom teachers. My students’ minds turn on when reality challenges them to confront the stereotypes that many of us carry about “urban education,” and their eyes light up at the opportunity to escape the “Trinity bubble” and play a meaningful role in the education of people younger than themselves. My Trinity colleagues and I invest a considerable amount of time and energy to build lasting relationships with our coordinating teachers in each school, who help us to schedule the logistics and come to campus at the end of the semester to evaluate students’ culminating projects. This community-learning component is so central to Trinity students’ learning experience that I cannot imagine what teaching this urban education class would be like without it.

Trinity Educ 200 orientation with Enid Camacho-Cruz at Burns Latino Studies Academy.
Orientation with Enid Camacho-Cruz (4th from left) at Burns Latino Studies Academy.
Pleasantly surprised to run into Brigit Rioual '14, a new staff member at Montessori Magnet, who took Educ 200 with me in Fall 2011.
Pleasantly surprised to run into Brigit Rioual ’14, a new staff member at Montessori Magnet, who took Educ 200 with me in Fall 2011.
Trinity Educ 200 orientation at Montessori Magnet School.
Trinity Educ 200 orientation at Montessori Magnet School.

Trinity Pre-Orientation Cyclists Stop by to Chat

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Ken Krayeske and Joe Barber invited me to ride with the Trinity Pre-Orientation cyclists this year, but those plans fell apart when I injured my hand earlier this month. So I was delighted when they stopped by my house this morning for a lemonade break and chat about cities and suburbs. Looking forward to riding with them in the future.

Mapping Hartford: Proposed Class for January 2017

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Trinity students and I hopped aboard CT Transit to explore school choice on our first day of the Cities Suburbs and Schools seminar in January 2016
Trinity students and I hopped aboard CT Transit to explore school choice on our first day of the Cities Suburbs and Schools seminar in January 2016

Trinity invited faculty to propose new half-credit courses for the two-week January Term session during winter break, so I submitted this proposal for “Mapping Hartford.” Stay tuned.

Title: Mapping Hartford (proposed for January 2017)

Description: In this hands-on course, students will create digital maps about metropolitan Hartford, and travel to meet people and places whose stories they tell. You will gain valuable skills in data visualization and web design, learn about the history of the city and its suburbs, expand your comfort zone beyond campus, and taste delicious foods in different neighborhoods. All readings and class exercises are freely available on the instructor’s websites (http://OnTheLine.trincoll.edu and http://DataVizForAll.org). Bring any laptop computer, but no prior mapping or computing experience is required. Instructor: Jack Dougherty. Enrollment Limit: 9.

Enrollment Limit (please provide rationale):  I request an enrollment limit of 9, rather than 15, to make our travels around the city of Hartford more feasible. When students sign up, I will notify them to obtain a U-Pass, and that our class will be ride as a group on the city bus for select trips. In case you’re wondering, I already experimented with my Educ 308 seminar riding the city bus on our first day of class in late January 2016, and it worked well with 9 students, but am unsure about larger numbers. Also, some of the people and places we will visit in Hartford are located in smaller buildings, so a group of 9 (plus me) is more manageable than 15.

Location: If this course is approved, I will ask Carlos Espinosa for permission to hold our class sessions at Trinfo Cafe, where I taught my Data Visualization internship seminar (with 8 students and 1 TA) in Spring 2016. This is an ideal space to work on our web maps, meet with community partners, and publicly show our work on the large-screen TVs. Also, Trinfo Cafe introduced many students to life beyond campus. Furthermore, since the #61 bus stops on the corner of Broad and Vernon Street before heading downtown, it’s a convenient place for me and my students to meet up.

Schedule for 2017: To maximize student learning and meet the 20 contact hour requirement, within the narrow 2-week J-term window, I propose the following schedule. It alternates between days when we will travel around Hartford as a group versus days when we will meet only at Trinfo Cafe.

Mon Jan 9 10am-1pm 3 hours
Tue Jan 10 10am-12pm 2 hours
Wed Jan 11 10am-1pm 3 hours
Thu Jan 12 10am-12pm 2 hours
Fri Jan 13 10am-1pm 3 hours
Mon Jan 16 no class (MLK Day)
Tues Jan 17 10am-12pm 2 hours
Wed Jan 18 10am-1pm 3 hours
Thu Jan 19 10am-12pm 2 hours
Fri Jan 20 no class (Inauguration Day)
Total contact time = 20 hours

Sample Hartford story map, created with easy-to-learn tools:

Money Matters: School Finance & Equity Policy in Connecticut

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Join us for brief presentations and insightful discussion about the latest developments on school finance reform in Connecticut.

Thursday, September 29th, 2016 from 12:15-1:15pm (Common Hour) in Rittenberg Lounge, Mather Hall, Trinity College. Open to the public. Light lunch buffet.


Katie Roy (Director and Founder) and Patrick Gibson (Senior Policy Analyst) represent the Connecticut School Finance Project, a non-partisan non-profit organization that seeks to build knowledge and identify solutions to unequal education funding across the state. See video and data resources on their website.

Robert Cotto Jr., Director of Urban Education Initiatives and Lecturer in Educational Studies at Trinity, will provide an overview of state Superior Court Judge Moukawsher’s recent ruling in the Connecticut Coalition for Justice in Education Funding (CCJEF) v Rell. See Cotto’s resource page on this important school equity case.

Sponsored by the Educational Studies Program and Urban Educational Initiatives, Trinity College.

Video part 1: Patrick Gibson presentation:

Video part 2: Robert Cotto presentation:

Video part 3: Discussion with Robert Cotto, Katie Roy, Patrick Gibson and the audience:

Photos from the event:

Patrick Gibson presenting on behalf of CT School Finance Project
Patrick Gibson presenting on behalf of CT School Finance Project
Vianna Iorio '19 and Briana Casey '17 speaking with Katie Roy and Patrick Gibson
Vianna Iorio ’19 and Briana Casey ’17 speaking with Katie Roy and Patrick Gibson