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Wednesday, May 14, 2014, 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

This event will be streamed live beginning at 9:00 a.m. Watch it here.

Sixty years after the Brown v. Board of Education decision by the U.S. Supreme Court that declared "separate, but equal" education to be unconstitutional, a persisten achievement gap exists in K-12 education between white students and children of color. To commemorate the spirit of that historic decision, Davenport University will hold a symposium about how urban educators can rise to the challenge of closing that gap, especially in STEM disciplines.

Among the highlights of the day-long event will be a teach-off between several noted educators demonstrating best practices for teaching a science lesson to culturally diverse, urban high school students.

This event is ideal for those who wish to pursue or develop a career in urban education, whether they are undergraduates, mid-career educators, or simply interested in what it takes to effectively teach urban students. Learn, share ideas, and network with innovative educators.

Those interested in attending or teaching at Davenport University's new College of Urban Education are especially encouraged to attend.


MORNING SESSION 8:00 a.m. - 11:30 p.m.

  • Registrants Check-in
  • Refreshments
  • Welcome Remarks
  • Teach-Off

LUNCH 12:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.

  • Keynote Address - Toward Equality in STEM Education

AFTERNOON SESSION 2:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

  • Teach-Off Results Announced/Winner Awarded
  • Master Class: The Culturally Competent Teacher
  • Closing Remarks
  • Networking Reception


Robert W. Sneden Center

W.A. Lettinga Campus, Davenport University

6191 Kraft Ave SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49512




Mr. Abud  is a physics teacher from Grosse Pointe North High School. He is working out of the classroom this year supporting 600 K-12 teachers as an instructional coach with the Grosse Pointe Public School System. In addition to his instructional coaching duties, Gary is coordinating a STEM training program for physics and chemistry teachers across Michigan this summer. His work has been recognized on many levels, but most notably he was selected by the Department of Education as the 2014 Michigan Teacher of the Year.


Dr. Collins teaches second grade at John P. Freeman Optional School in the Memphis City Schools in Tennessee. She teaches mathematics and science, as well as reading, grammar, social studies, and spelling. She has received the Horace Mann Award for Teaching Excellence and a Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching. She has a bachelor’s degree from Murray State and master’s and doctor of philosophy degrees from the University of Southern Mississippi. She is a National Board Certified Teacher in early childhood education.


Dr. Fuller is a virology professor and member of the African Studies Center at the University of Michigan. Also as an adjunct faculty member at Payne Theological Seminary, she conducts translational health equity research with a global focus on HIV/AIDS elimination. She has received awards from the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation and the Ford Foundation. She recently began as Faculty Director for Health Equity Research in the Office for Health Equity and Inclusion of the University of Michigan Health System/University of Michigan Medical School. 


Dr. Gunn is an assistant professor at Davenport University’s College of Arts and Sciences, where she is chair of the science department. Her teaching experience ranges from high school classes to college courses to medical school programs. Her post-doctoral research, conducted with Dr. Francis Collins at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, University of Michigan Medical School, involved constructing an animal model for the genetic disease neurofibromatosis.


Ms. Jones is an award winning international speaker, educational consultant, and author of Well, Refresh My Math! (June ‘14). She is a former certified teacher in Minnesota and Michigan, middle school principal (public charter school academy), and director of Developmental Education (at Baker College). Ms. Jones recently launched a Global Math Initiative in South Africa to enhance academic and cultural experiences of youth with STEM. She empowers adults with the I Love My Kids with MathTM movement. She was honored with a Clorox Pinesol Company-Woman Making a Powerful Difference award, featured in Essence and Ebony magazines, and on the NPR affiliate station in Detroit for her commitment to education as the founder of POWER Organization (POWER Org Math). She has been the principal consultant for POWER Institute, LLC since 2006.


Dr. Mackie is an educator and motivational speaker with considerable STEM expertise. A former associate professor of mechanical engineering at Tulane University and a recipient of the 2003 Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring, he now chairs the Louisiana Council on the Social Status of Black Boys and Men. Dr. Mackie is also the Managing Partner of Channel ZerO Group LLC, an educational and motivational consulting company in Louisiana.


Dr. Perry is founding dean of urban education at Davenport University, responsible for planning and launching Davenport’s new College of Urban Education. Prior to, he served as the CEO of the Capital One-University of New Orleans Charter Network, which comprised four charter schools in New Orleans, as well as associate director for educational initiatives for the Loyola Institute for Quality and Equity in Education. His scholarship focuses education reform and the impact of education policy on community wellness.


Questions about registration, media coverage or the College of Urban Education?

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