Students Honor Top Faculty, Staff

Students Honor Top Faculty, Staff

Combo photo of four ASG winnersHonorees include Matt Easterday, (top left, clockwise), Ken Powers, Diane Schanzenbach + Lilah Shapiro. 

Six members of Northwestern University’s School of Education and Social Policy community were selected to the 2021-22 Associated Student Government Faculty and Administrator Honor Roll for their teaching, dedication, and care for students.

SESP’s winners included Connor Bain (PhD21), Matt Easterday, Stephanie Marin (MS21), Kenneth Powers (BS95), Diane Schanzenbach, and Lilah Shapiro. The ASG collected nominations from nearly 100 students during the last school year and selected winners who they felt made a “powerful and exceptional impact” on their experience at Northwestern.


Ken Powers is a senior academic advisor who also coordinates SESP’s convocation ceremony. He received his master’s in public policy from American University after earning his bachelor’s in social policy at the School of Education and Social Policy.


Matthew Easterday, associate professor of learning sciences, was nominated for his course Community Engagement, which introduces students to off-campus community engagement, learning, and active citizenship in a democracy. Easterday, an associate fellow at the Institute for Policy Research, received his doctorate in human-computer interaction from Carnegie Mellon University. He is interested in producing scientifically supported educational technology to develop informed and engaged citizens.

Diane Whitmore Schanzenbach, the Margaret Walker Alexander Professor of Human Development and Social Policy, teaches the Economics of Social Policy which helps students learn how to analyze the effects of social policies related to the social safety net, health insurance, minimum wage, taxation and other topics. Schanzenbach is director of the Institute for Policy Research and a research associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research. She received her doctorate in economics from Princeton University.

Lilah Shapiro, associate professor of instruction, teaches Understanding Knowledge, which grapples with the hairy issue of what it means “to know” something and how we produce new information. Some of her research interests include ethnicity, race, assimilation and immigration, and American culture. “She tailored class discussions to what students found interesting and accommodated generously when needed,” a student nominator wrote. She received her doctorate from the University of Chicago.


connor_bainConnor Bain, assistant professor of instruction, was the nation’s first student to receive a joint doctorate in computer science and learning sciences. His course Introduction to Computer Programming introduces students to Python and assumes that they have no prior experience with programming. Bain helps students see how programming can be a tool for thinking about problems, amplifying and/or communicating ideas, performing complex calculations over massive datasets, and more. 

Stephanie MarinStephanie Marin, a graduate of SESP’s Higher Education Administration and Policy program, is senior project coordinator of special projects in the Office of the President. She was nominated for her work directing the Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship Program and coordinating the Morton Schapiro Distinguished Secondary School Teacher Award program at Northwestern. Prior to earning her master’s at SESP, she received her bachelor’s in Spanish with honors and Latin American and Caribbean studies from Northwestern.

By Julie Deardorff
Last Modified: 10/31/22