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Loyola to host first Peter Murrell, Jr., Memorial Symposium on Urban Education

| By Stephanie Weaver
Peter Murrell, Jr., Memorial Symposium

Loyola University Maryland’s School of Education will host the Peter C. Murrell, Jr., Memorial Symposium on Urban Education on Thursday, Oct. 6, 2016, from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. in McGuire Hall on the Evergreen Campus.

The symposium, co-sponsored by Alliance for Community Teachers and Schools (ACTS), is free and open to the public.

The symposium is in honor of Peter Murrell, Ph.D., the founding dean of Loyola’s School of Education, who died in October 2015. The event aims to bring together professors, educators, community members, and youth activists to challenge old notions of school organization and instruction, and present new ways of forming relationships and refining teaching practices. 

The day-long Symposium will feature a keynote lecture from Gloria Ladson-Billings, Ph.D., Kellner Family Distinguished Chair of Urban Education in the department of curriculum and instruction at University of Wisconsin-Madison. A well-known author and editor, Ladson-Billings has won numerous scholarly awards and honorary degrees, including the Brock International Prize in Education in 2012. Ladson-Billings’s lecture will explore radical reconstruction of teacher education, and discuss why a more in-depth focus on youth culture is key to preparing teachers in culturally relevant ways.

Three focus topics shape the agenda, representing three strands of Dr. Murrell’s work. Each segment will open with a panel discussion, followed by participatory breakout sessions.  The symposium will also feature a lunchtime talk by Edward Fergus, Ph.D., assistant professor of educational leadership and policy at Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development at New York University.

About Peter Murrell, Jr., Ph.D.

Murrell served as founding dean of the School of Education from 2008 to 2011 and led its official launch in fall 2009, having shaped the school’s vision to address complex issues facing urban education to ensure all children have the right to a quality education. This vision established a foundation for the extensive opportunities for community engagement and collaboration afforded to Loyola undergraduate and graduate education students. Murrell was also a professor of urban education and an advisor to Loyola’s chapter of Urban Needs in Teacher Education, the first chapter on the east coast. He co-founded ACTS, a group of activists dedicated to urban education and the communities in which children live. ACTS has a memorial fund in Murrell’s name that will continue Murrell’s legacy. 

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