Higher Education Student Nate Randall Wins Education Pioneers Fellowship

Higher Education Student Nate Randall Wins Education Pioneers Fellowship

Nate Randall
Nathan Randall, a graduate student in the Higher Education Administration and Policy master’s program, was awarded an Education Pioneers Fellowship for a project in education entrepreneurship. Education Pioneers, a nonprofit organization focused on transforming K-12 urban education, selects top graduate students across the nation to support nonprofit partners and build a nationwide network of change agents.

Starting in June, Randall will work in Texas with an education nonprofit. “The fellowship appealed to me as a phenomenal opportunity to get launched straight from my master's program into a high-impact work environment where I would have an immediate chance to help tackle pressing issues in American education,” says Randall. “Additionally, by spending the summer participating in professional development workshops with a cohort of fellows, I'll leave the program with an amazing network of peers and colleagues from a variety of fields, including — in addition to education — business, law and public policy.”

“The exciting thing about the program is you accept the fellowship offer before you actually have any idea what type of project you'll be working on,” says Randall, who does know he’ll be working for an educational nonprofit organization in an analytical, consulting or project management capacity.

The goal of the Higher Education Administration and Policy program is to prepare reflective and dynamic leaders for careers in higher education. Alumni work in colleges and universities, governmental agencies and consulting firms concerned with higher education.

As a student in the program, Randall became interested in efforts to prepare students for a successful college experience. “The professors in Northwestern's Higher Ed program do a great job emphasizing the importance of efforts to improve not just access, but also — equally significantly — student persistence and success. And, in many ways, preparation for a successful college experience needs to begin long before students begin as freshmen. So, although I initially set out to work primarily with college students, I've more recently developed an interest in working with programs that seek to bridge the gap between high school and college,” he explains.

“Fortunately, these two professional interests aren't mutually exclusive, as I think there is huge potential to leverage current college students in the efforts to improve success for future college students,” he adds.

The Education Pioneers Fellowship Program provides high-achieving graduate students in business, education, law, public policy and other programs with an opportunity to make an impact with an education organization. Along with other fellows, Randall will participate in professional development geared toward better understanding of key education issues and learning from those leaders who are already making a difference in the field. 

For several years, SESP graduate students have won Education Pioneers fellowships. In 2010 Master of Science in Learning and Organizational Change (MSLOC) students April Bowman and William Wong won fellowships to work with a charter schools management organization in Dallas and the Chicago Public Schools, respectively. In 2009 Learning Sciences alumnus Rob Kimball (MA09) and MSLOC alumna Erica Labowitz (MS09) won fellowships, Kimball to work with the KIPP Ascend Charter School in Chicago and Labovitz to work with Partners for Developing Futures, a social venture firm that invests in charter schools. In 2008 MSLOC graduate Christine Leung (MS08) worked with City Year service corps in Boston, and in 2007 MSLOC alumna Meghan Tallent-Bennis (MS07) was a fellow with the Chicago Public Schools.

By Marilyn Sherman
Last Modified: 7/27/17