SESP Convocation Speaker Will Be Gloria Ladson-Billings

SESP Convocation Speaker Will Be Gloria Ladson-Billings

Gloria Ladson-Billings
Gloria Ladson-Billings, the Kellner Family Professor in Urban Education and chair of the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, will be the featured speaker at SESP Convocation on June 17 at 4 p.m. This year, 196 students will be graduating from the School of Education and Social Policy. 

Ladson-Billings is widely known as an education scholar and teacher educator. Her definitive book The Dreamkeepers examines the practices of teachers who are successful with African American students. In that book, she also advocates for “culturally relevant teaching,” which draws on the child’s culture as a source of strength. Her more recent books are Crossing Over to Canaan: The Journey of New Teachers in Diverse Classrooms and Beyond the Big House: African American Educators on Teacher Education.

In 2005, she was president of the American Education Research Association (AERA). In addition, she has won numerous scholarly awards, including membership in the National Academy of Education, a senior fellowship in urban education at the Annenberg Institute for School Reform at Brown University and a fellowship at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University. Her research interests include educational anthropology, cultural studies and race theory applications to education. She received her doctorate in education from Stanford University.

Ladson-Billings received acclaim for a dynamic speech she gave as AERA president. In that talk, entitled “From the Achievement Gap to the Education Debt: Understanding Achievement in U.S. Schools,” she described the achievement gap in the nation's schools in terms of the “educational debt” owed to minority students.

In addition to speeches by Ladson-Billings and a SESP senior representing the Class of 2011, the SESP Convocation will feature the awarding of degrees to undergraduate, master’s and doctoral graduates. Alumni awards will also be presented to both undergraduate and graduate students, and outstanding professor awards will be given as well.

After the Convocation ceremony, which will last about one and a half hours, a reception for SESP graduates and their families will be held at the Panhellenic Sorority Quad.

The student co-chairs for Convocation are graduating seniors Rosey Martinez and Colleen Antas.

Information about Convocation tickets is available here.

By Marilyn Sherman
Last Modified: 4/11/11