IRW Distinguished Lecture Series - Gloria Bonilla Santiago, “The Miracle on Cooper Street: A Case Study of Community Transformation and Engaged Scholarship”


Thursday, February 11, 2016, 04:30pm - 06:00pm

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In the Miracle on Cooper Street case study I will shared the challenges and obstacles, potential resources and support of fellow professional that moved the LEAP Academy from a small charter school in 1997 to its top positon today. I will describe and analyzed the establishment and accomplishments of LEAP Academy in one of America’s poorest and most violent cites, Camden, NJ. I will shared my personal and professional struggles as a Latina scholar  from an impoverished and working class background, surviving and fighting for respect in an academic world that at times did not value racial and ethnic diversity. Those experiences forged a dream of transforming a poor urban community through education.  I will narrate an inspiring account that shows how one determined individual can make a profound difference I the lives of at risk children and their communities. It presents a working model for charter schools, while at the same time admitting that LEAP is a work in progress. Most of all it describes an inspiring institution that has seen many young people break the cycle of poverty, graduate from high school, succeed in college, and go on to live productive lives.

Free and open to the public.

Ruth Dill Johnson Crockett Building, 162 Ryders Lane, Douglass Campus, Rutgers-New Brunswick