How African Americans Emerged from Slavery with a Hunger for Education

From Plantations to Churches to the Classroom, Ex-Slaves Tirelessly Pursued Public Schooling

The focus of my research and writing is women’s involvement in higher education, especially women from the Pentecostal and Holiness faith traditions. While conducting research on African American female seminaries, I found myself reaching back to a very rich yet little-known history of educational efforts by African Americans both during and after slavery. The narratives of those days should remind us just how stubborn and enduring the hunger for education has been in American life.

In the United States, slave masters were intent on keeping their slaves illiterate. Two events drove …

Dancing in New Orleans to Overcome Division

A Crescent City Transplant Creates a Diverse Non-Profit, and Finds a New Home

Five years ago, I moved from New York to New Orleans. The reasons included a need to escape from the New York grind, a lover’s terminal brain cancer, and a …

Yes, Classroom Tech Can Tackle Inequality—but Change Takes Politics and Patience

Digital Education Is Lifting Students While Challenging Academics and Silicon Valley

Even as digital technology has grown exponentially more sophisticated, accessible, and integral to our lives, social inequality has cast a deeper shadow across the United States in recent decades. Simultaneously, …

How Much Do We Learn in College?

Until Universities Track Improvement, We Won't Know the Real Value of Higher Ed

It’s mid-winter, your college applications have been submitted, and you’ll soon be pacing the floor waiting to learn where you have been accepted. But will you emerge from college four …

Why College Rankings Are Anti-Diversity

To Boost Prestige, Magazines Pressure Universities to Leave Poor Students Behind

In the next several weeks, millions of high school seniors will apply to colleges and universities across the nation. If you are one of them—and if you come from a …