Youth Empowerment

Mapping The Design of Censorship in Public Education

Various US states have passed bans on public education curricula that include discussions of race, gender, sexuality, and diversity in factually accurate terms and that document the history of white supremacy and intersecting oppressions in the US. Recent data justice initiatives have sought to document these trends by charting individual challenges to materials held at public and school libraries. This project extends these efforts by using network science to connect censorship legislation with individual challenges to educational materials. It uses overlay technologies to illustrate the intersecting domains of censorship across various policy projects and legislative initiatives, revealing a systems design to the various interconnected efforts to censor education.     

Just Curriculums Initiative

The Just Curriculums Initiative is a multidisciplinary initiative aimed at improving the accessibility and diversity of representation in Chicanx and Latinx studies at all levels of instruction. It supports knowledge production and innovation in content, pedagogy, assessment, and learning outcomes across all content areas of Chicanx and Latinx studies. It features user-centered design and place-based methods that address current gaps in engagement with Indigenous studies and African American and Africana studies. 

Developing Structural Competency in Legal Education

Recent developments in what Dorothy Roberts calls “structural competencies” in medical education have been critical to efforts to improve outcomes for patients of color and marginalized populations in clinical settings. The efforts to reform medical education with a better understanding of the structural nature of the determinants of health and the need for health equity approaches, however, has not extended to legal education. This project is a multi-institutional initiative to extend the racial justice framework of structural competency to legal education. This project documents the need for structurally competent legal representation and outlines a pathway for increasing and improving structural competency curriculum in legal education. 

Weathering and Physicians of Color 

Less than 6% of US physicians are Black, and 20-30% of physicians of color have reported at least one job turnover due to workplace discrimination. This longitudinal study explores the recruitment and retention of physicians of color through the public health paradigm of weathering, understood as the stress-induced health phenomenon where the chronic toll of battling against the headwinds of oppression results in differential health outcomes for marginalized populations. The project also explores structural and policy-based responses to improve the recruitment and retention of physicians of color. 

Leadership and Survivance

This program develops the research and operational capacities of grassroots and nonprofit organizations to implement strengths-based and Positive Youth Development (PYD) strategies in adolescent programming. As a research initiative, it also documents and develops the existing literature on strengths-based youth leadership initiatives and the comparative strengths of this approach. Leadership and Survivance explores how these programs offer an important alternative to the deficit and psychopathology model of adolescent behavior that are better-suited to respond to youth empowerment needs in eco-social contexts of structural injustice and intersectional oppressions. The project explains why skills and aptitudes developed in response to oppression should not be used to justify oppression and systemic violence.  

Play On.

April 6 marks the annual observance of the Day of Sport for International Development and Peace (IDSDP), which features the positive role sport and physical activity play in the lives of diverse youth communities throughout the world. Play On is an advocacy program that builds on the IDSDP model to facilitate access to sports education and training for underrepresented and under-resourced youth who face structural barriers to participation in sports or to organized physical activity play.