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Message from the Dean

Dr. Holcomb-McCoyIt is my pleasure to welcome you to American University’s School of Education (AU SOE). As Dean, I can proudly say that our School is a vibrant learning environment where faculty, staff, students, alum, and community members regularly engage in active learning, culturally responsive pedagogy, rigorous scientific discovery, and passionate advocacy and community-based engagement. Whether online or in-person, our distinguished faculty and staff members work every day to achieve our vision of an antiracist and equity-driven community in which all students are given the support they need to realize their unique potential and develop the creativity and resilience that will lead to a successful career in education. We are also proud of our diverse offerings for achieving a degree in education. For instance, we offer a Teacher Pipeline Project for DC students interested in teaching and most recently, we added a new executive, online certificate program in Antiracist School Leadership. Our goal is to provide multiple pathways and modalities for students to achieve their goal/s of becoming educator!

Washington, DC is an exceptional place to pursue a degree in education because of the rich and diverse education settings that surround us---public schools, charter schools, education non-profits, government agencies, etc. And, our work environment at AU, in every dimension, reflects both the aspirations and unlimited opportunities in teaching and learning, leadership development, policymaking, and community organizing. As such, joining us brings a multitude of possibilities, from observing world-class special educators in a unique lab school setting to acquiring knowledge and skills in international education policy.

As you explore our website, I hope you will discover our dedication to helping students thrive and find joy in learning. We truly believe that education is a social determinant of various aspects of our lives---health/nutrition, justice, community development, and economic stability. Matter of fact, this is evidenced by our interdisciplinary approach to learning and our graduates’ accomplishments in diverse career fields. Life at the AU SOE is full of excitement and most important, it’s a place where classrooms come alive with purpose through conversation, collaboration, and hands-on experiences. 

I hope you’ll join us at AU SOE! 

Cheryl Holcomb-McCoy
Twitter: @chm91364

Dr. Cheryl Holcomb-McCoy, Dean of the School of Education is on sabbatical through July 31, 2024. Acting Co-Deans are Dr. Corbin M. Campbell and Dr. Rodney HopsonRead the Welcome Message from the Acting Co-Deans here.

Publications and Messages from the Dean


► Read or listen to this EdSurge podcast on why the time has come to reset college legacy admissions practices. [Aug. 1, 2023] 

► A panel you can watch on what the Affirmative Action decision by SCOTUS may mean in higher education. [July 13, 2023]

► "Why We Must Teach African American Studies: A Call to Action," an opinion piece in Diverse: Issues in Higher Education.

► Dean's Welcome Message, Fall 2022 (PDF)

► The ‘Other CRT’ — Culturally Responsive Teaching — Can Truly Make a Difference (The Hill)

► Reopening Schools Safely Requires Addressing the Stress of Educators of Color (The Hill)

► How To Solve Problems That Come with Putting More Counselors in Schools (District Administration)

Mission Statement

The mission of the School of Education is to create knowledge and prepare students to transform societies through education.

Vision Statement

The School of Education aims to be locally, nationally, and globally recognized for making a meaningful impact in the field of education through innovative teaching, research, and service. Our impact will be achieved through rigorous scholarship; advocating for equitable and inclusive learning environments; advancing social justice; preparing effective educators; providing leadership in public-policy arenas; and collaborating with local, national, and global communities and organizations.