Urban Leadership Academy

Under the umbrella of the Center for the Study of Leadership in Urban Schools, the University of Minnesota’s Urban Leadership Academy (ULA) seeks to create a learning environment for school teachers, leaders, and university faculty to come together to learn from one another while engaging in day-long workshops.

During the 2016-2017 academic year, the ULA will be exploring the expansion of their programing to include the development of a more robust learning cohort that will span an academic year bringing together 25 participants from the urban districts of Minnesota to work with Dr. Muhammad Khalifa, Dr. Katie Pekel and practitioner facilitators.

2016-2017 Urban Leadership Academy Announces Line-Up Make it Real: Instructional Leadership = Racial Equity

Minnesota school leaders must create an equitable and culturally responsive space for all students to learn. In order to drive change, racial equity must be at the center of instructional leadership. Join us for ULA’s 2016 to 2017 workshop series, to focus and reflect on what it means to be a racially equitable leader, providing expertise and vision for your district, your school, your team, your classroom.

Achieving Equity through Culturally Responsive Teaching
Thursday, November 10, 2016

In this workshop, participants will learn about the basic principles of culturally responsive teaching, and how it makes a difference in the lives and learning of under-served students and their families. You will learn strategies for making positive changes, with an emphasis on the understanding that academic performance requires more than academics. CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

GayGeneva Dr. Geneva Gay is Professor of Education at the University of Washington-Seattle where she teaches multicultural education and general curriculum theory. She is the recipient of the Distinguished Scholar Award, presented by the Committee on the Role and Status of Minorities in Educational Research and Development of the American Educational Research Association; the first Multicultural Educator Award presented by the National Association of Multicultural Education; the 2004 W.E.B. Du Bois Distinguished Lecturer Award presented by the Special Interest Group on Research Focus on Black Education of the American Educational Research Association; and the 2006 Mary Anne Raywid Award for Distinguished Scholarship in the Field of Education, presented by the Society of Professors of Education. She is nationally and internationally known for her scholarship in multicultural education, particularly as it relates to curriculum design, staff development, classroom instruction, and intersections of culture, race, ethnicity, teaching, and learning.

Cultivating Community and Voice in the Classroom: What We Can Learn from Our Students
Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Using narrative and photographs as mediums of story, this workshop will engage teachers in the voices of first-generation, low-income students who are increasingly the new majority in our schools. Drawing on data from interviews, focus groups, and photographs, Jehangir will share student perspectives on their multiple identities and efforts to gain ownership of their learning. Together we will immersed in their lived experience and consider how to translate this knowledge into our classrooms and our school context. CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

JehangirRashneDr. Rashné Jehangir is an associate professor in the College of Education and Human Development where she teaches in an interdisciplinary First-Year Experience Program and in doctoral and master’s program in Multicultural Teaching and Learning. She is the recipient of the Distinguished Horace T. Morse Teacher Award at the University of Minnesota and is the author of the book Higher Education and First-Generation College Students: Cultivating, Community, Voice and Place for the New Majority. She is regularly invited to speak at faculty development institutes around the country and has presented at numerous conferences including the National Conference on Race and Ethnicity and the Conference of the First-Year Experience and Students in Transition. Her research and teaching interests focus on experience of low-income, first-generation students, multicultural curriculum and identity development; learning communities and design and structure of First Year Experience Programs.

Creating Community in a Diverse School Environment
Wednesday, February 8, 2017

This workshop will provide basic, practical techniques on how to develop alliances and a sense of community between multicultural groups. We will focus on how to create an environment of trust and a sense of community where similarities and differences are valued, acknowledged, and considered useful. Participants will be taken through a series of exercises that will help them learn more about each other and what each has to offer that is uniquely theirs. In addition, opportunities will be provided for participants to share the stories and life experiences that have shaped and impacted who they have become, as well as their aspirations for the future. This very intimate and moving experience often leaves participants feeling they have grown closer in friendship and in understanding. We highly recommend this seminar for those participants who have either grown up or worked in mostly monocultural environments. CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

Participants will learn the following:

  • Insight, ideas, and suggested resources needed to build and maintain alliances interpersonally and cross-culturally
  • Strategies to motivate and retain multicultural groups
  • Techniques on how to listen and respond to intercultural communications
  • Ways to integrate mainstream cultures with new entries into the workplace
  • The Art of Listening & Responding
  • Nine Healthy Ways To Communicate

LMWLee Mun Wah is an internationally renowned Chinese American documentary filmmaker, author, poet, Asian folkteller, educator, community therapist and master diversity trainer. For more than 25 years he was a resource specialist and counselor in the San Francisco Unified School District. He later became a consultant to private schools, working with students that had severe learning and behavioral issues. Thousands of people from government and social service agencies, corporations and educational institutions have taken Lee Mun Wah’s workshops and partnered with Stirfry Seminars & Consulting on their diversity initiatives. It is Lee Mun Wah’s belief that we cannot wait until tomorrow for some charismatic leader to appear who will bring us all together. We each must take a stand and personally participate in this important journey of confronting our fears and beginning a conversation not only with those we love but also with those we have been taught to fear.

The Sweet and Sour Taste of Racism in “Post-Racial” America
Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Most whites believe racism is limited to bigots: the KLAN, Cliven Bundy (Nevada Rancher) and Donald Sterling (former owner of the Clippers), and Donald Trump and many of his supporters. In this presentation I will argue that racism morphed in the 1970s into a more “civilized” racial system and produced a new type of prejudice. To make my case, I will do four things. First, define racism and suggest that, above anything else, it is systemic race-based privilege defended through racial domination. Second, provide the general characteristics of the “new racism” or the system of racial domination that replaced Jim Crow in the 1970s. Third, describe the dominant prejudice of contemporary America which I have labeled in my work as “color-blind racism.” Fourth, illustrate how the new racism system and the new prejudice work in organizations the parade as “beyond race”: colleges. I will conclude my talk by suggesting several things we might consider doing to fight dominant as well as secondary forms of racism in contemporary America. CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

Bonilla-SilvaEduardoEduardo Bonilla-Silva is Professor and Chair of the Sociology department at Duke University. Professor Bonilla-Silva gained visibility in the social sciences with his 1997 American Sociological Review article, “Rethinking Racism: Toward a Structural Interpretation,” where he challenged social analysts to study racial matters structurally rather than from the sterile prejudice perspective. Bonilla-Silva has received many awards, most notably, the 2007 Lewis Coser Award given by the Theory Section of the American Sociological Association for Theoretical-Agenda Setting and, in 2011, the Cox-Johnson-Frazier Award given by the American Sociological Association “to an individual or individuals for their work in the intellectual traditions of the work of these three African American scholars.” He is the President-Elect of the Southern Sociological Society and was recently elected President of the American Sociological Association.

Package Registrations

Package registration links:


Please contact Jessica McLain at mclai003@umn.edu or 612-220-8722 if you have any questions.

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