Shawn Ginwright Named Professor of Practice

Harvard Graduate School of Education Dean Bridget Long announced today that author, activist and educator Shawn Ginwright has been named professor of practice. A scholar of youth development, with a specific focus on racial equity, social and emotional learning, and civic engagement, Ginwright will be joining the HGSE senior faculty in summer 2023.

“I am immensely excited to welcome Shawn Ginwright to HGSE. His unique combination of research, fieldwork, and nonprofit leadership perfectly embody the professor of practice role at HGSE, and his work is timely during this crucial moment in education,” says Long. “We anticipate Shawn contributing to our community in multiple ways, including sharing his influential work on healing-centered pedagogy. Shawn connects to many of our existing efforts and aspirations, and I very much look forward to working with him in the years to come.”

Ginwright will bring to HGSE over 25 years of experience working with young African American people, and in communities of color, advocating for the healing of broken systems by championing strategies that are rooted in equity and hope. A leading voice at the intersection of youth development, racial equity, and civic engagement, Ginwright’s research was among the first to show how Black youth in historically marginalized communities can effectively engage in civic organizing, repositioning urban youth as civic innovators and producers. He is also well-known for his theories of radical healing and healing-centered pedagogy, as well as for the framework CARMA (Culture, Agency, Relationships, Meaning, and Achievement), which offers a unifying vision of how to support the development of young people of color.

Ginwright — currently professor of education in the Africana Studies department at San Francisco State University — is looking forward to continuing his work with graduate students at HGSE, he says, and to advancing his research on understanding the role of trauma, healing, well-being , and hope among young people of color and in educational settings.

“I’m humbled by this opportunity and excited to join the Harvard Graduate School of Education’s esteemed faculty,” says Ginwright. “This is an amazing opportunity to deepen my research on healing among young people of color and train graduate students in healing-centered strategies.”

Author of numerous books and scholarly articles, including Hope and Healing in Urban Education: How Activists and Teachers Are Reclaiming Matters of the Heart; Black Youth Rising: Activism and Radical Healing in Urban America; and The Four Pivots: Reimagining Justice, Reimagining Ourselves, Ginwright’s scholarship grows out of his extensive field experience. He is founder and CEO of Flourish Agenda, a national nonprofit that equips schools, youth-serving organizations, foundations, and local governments with tools and strategies that empower young people of color and allow them to thrive as leaders in their schools and communities. Prior to that, he ran Leadership Excellence, a youth development agency for Black youth that offered an innovative, integrated approach to development and civic engagement.

In fall 2023, Ginwright will transition from the day-to-day management of the Flourish Agenda in order to focus on his new role at HGSE.