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Speaking from the Field 2018

The Education Policy and Leadership (EPL) program in AU's School of Education (SOE) hosted a policy and leadership career panel on April 5, 2018. Students, alumni, and faculty gathered to hear panelists speak about the education field and their experiences helping to improve K-12 education. Moderated by EPL career advisor Shayna Cook, the three panelists, discussed their diverse perspectives on both classroom and education-reform issues.

The panelists:

  • Darla Bunting is the executive director of the northeast US for Enriched Schools, an education startup company and community talent hub in New Orleans, Washington, DC, Nashville, Memphis, and Dallas. Darla launched the DC region in 2012 and grew the program to serve and support nearly all of the charter schools in the District. She established and is the former chair of First Book-DC, the local affiliate of First Book, and led the volunteer team to raise funds and award over a half million books to teachers, non-profits and community programs serving kids in need from 2011-2017.
  • Mark Johnston is the director of trainings at 50CAN, nonprofit network of local leaders advocating for a high-quality education for every kid. Mark also helped design and implement a training module for the college access non-profit Matriculate that equipped undergraduate students to become college advisors for low-income high school students. He has a master's degree in public policy from American University.
  • Allison Wood taught Pre-K at KIPP DC: Grow Academy for three years. During that time, Allison completed her Master's in Education Policy and Leadership from American University. She is currently a Jumpstart Site Manager at the Catholic University of America and the Co-Founder and CEO of edVario: Schools Leading Schools.

The event, attended by current EPL students and faculty, included a provocative discussion on networking through the educational policy and advocacy sectors, advocating for special needs students in policy making, and race and equity issues in the field.

A huge thank you to Shayna Cook who planned and organized the event and to the School of Education for their support and assistance.

Check out our previous events: