Join Us for Ed Talks

Join us for the 2018 Fall Ed Talks on November 7

 Inclusion | Engagement | Collaboration

Join us for latest Ed Talks, a thought-provoking series aimed at challenging assumptions and creating new paradigms around diversity and inclusion in education and beyond. Inspired by TED Talks, the CU Boulder School of Education Ed Talks explores "hot topics" in education through short and engaging presentations. This fall, learn about how students of color join together to make change, bilingual parents are given opportunities to participate in public conversations, and more.

Free and open to the public. Guests are encouraged to stay and continue the conversation after the main presentations. RSVP is recommended, as space is limited.

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Ben KirshnerYouth Activism and Social Change

Ben Kirshner, Professor of Education and Faculty Director for CU Engage

“Teenager," and its more clinical cousin, "adolescent," have become laden with meanings that disparage and stigmatize young people in their second decade of life. Common negative narratives are a problem not just because they are scientifically unsupported, but also because they are used to justify counterproductive policies and practices, especially when intersected with race, class, gender, and sexuality. What is the alternative? We need new narratives and new opportunities for young people to act as political agents who have a right to participate in decisions about policies and systems that affect their lives.

 Ben Kirshner grew up in Brookline, Massachusetts and in his twenties moved to the San Francisco Bay Area, where he was a youth worker.  Ben’s experiences working with young people at a community center motivated him to study educational equity and the design of learning environments, which he pursued at Stanford's Graduate School of Education. He is Professor of Learning Sciences and Human Development in the CU Boulder School of Education, and he is the Faculty Director for CU Engage: the Center for Community-Based Learning and Research. Through CU Engage, he seeks to develop and sustain university-community partnerships that leverage the resources of the university to address persistent public challenges. Ben’s research examines youth organizing, participatory action research, and new forms of digital media as contexts for learning, development, and social change. 

magnolia In Lak'ech: You Are My Other Me

Magnolia Landa-Posas, Aquetza Summer Program Co-Director & Just Transition Collaborative Community Engagement Manager 

Explore the importance of culture, vulnerability, deep listening and holding space for students and educators throughout our collective educational journeys. Discover the values and principles that guide the learning that takes place at the powerful Aquetza Summer Program through the interwoven stories of students and staff. By sharing the spirit and essence of the Aquetza Program, we aim to inspire Lak’ech, a Mayan principle of oneness.

Magnolia Landa-Posas is the Community Engagement Manager for the Just Transition Collaborative, Co-Director of the Aquetza Summer Program, and Coordinator for the Foundation for Leaders Organizing for Water and Sustainability. She is passionate about environmental and social justice, intersectional and interdisciplinary education and the critical engagement of underrepresented youth and historically marginalized communities. She is concerned with identifying, addressing and communicating issues of injustice and inequity in policies that disproportionately impact marginalized communities. Magnolia is a firm believer of grassroots efforts, community knowledge and social dreaming. In her spare time, she enjoys platicas with family and friends, traveling, eating good food and reading. 

EnihsFinding Our Collective Power as Students of Color Who Refuse to Conform 

Enihs Medrano, Centaurus High School Senior, Public Achievement Coach, with support from Charla Agnoletti, Program Director for Public Achievement

This is a story of the change that young people can enact when they use personal experiences as the drive to make a difference for themselves and others. Enihs Medrano shares her personal journey within CU Boulder’s Public Achievement program at Centaurus High School and how it molded her desire to use her voice for social change. Her story is only one piece of a collective effort by a group of high school students who are working to diversify the AP and IB classes at their high school. “When young people of color refuse to accept the stereotypes placed on us by teachers, administration, white peers and white parents, we are able to access the education we deserve while changing the perception of students of color.”

Enihs Medrano is a senior at Centaurus High School. Enihs was born and raised in Lafayette, Colorado and lives with her two parents and her younger brother.  Both of Enihs’ parents are from Mexico and Enihs identifies as Mexican-American. Growing up in two cultures has made Enihs appreciate both unique influences in her life. Her love for Jesus is a central part of her identity and guides her purpose in serving others. Enihs is actively involved in Young Life as a student leader and is passionate about making young people feel seen and loved. She is enrolled in the International Baccalaureate program at Centaurus High School and is planning on graduating in Spring 2019. In the future, Enihs is interested in working in higher education or in ministry work with the larger goal of working for community and social justice.   

ManuelaHow Efficiency Sabotages Our Efforts at Inclusivity

Manuela Sifuentes, CU Engage Director of Community Partnerships

A [well] translated website, interpreters at parent-teacher conferences, bilingual staff and teachers all contribute to making a school more welcoming for monolingual Spanish-speaking parents in schools. But experience has shown us it is not enough. What other language-access practices can we use to better integrate all parents?

As Director of Community Partnerships at CU Engage, Manuela Sifuentes cultivates and sustains relationships between CU Engage and community organizations to carry out collaborative projects that advance the public good. Her work focuses on dismantling systems of oppression while also supporting historically marginalized communities as they navigate those systems. Raised in both Guatemala and Boulder, Manuela is bilingual and bicultural, an accomplished translator, certified interpreter, and an advocate for language-access issues, particularly in healthcare and educational contexts. She attended Boulder Valley School District (BVSD) schools and later became a step-parent of a BVSD student. Manuela is an alumna of CU Boulder, having received a BA in International Affairs. She also has Master’s of Public Health and Public Administration degrees from the University of Michigan.


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Ed Talks Videos - Spring 2018 

The CU Boulder School of Education hosted its inaugural Ed Talks on Tuesday, May 22 at the Dairy Arts Center. These presentations, led by CU Boulder education professors, explored topics such as teacher walkouts, hate speech on college campuses, distrust in education, and more. 

Watch Ed Talks Videos