Harvard's PEAR & Universities in Partnership

A friend of a friend recently introduced me a Harvard Medical School program called PEAR - The Program in Education, Afterschool, and Resiliency. PEAR does great research and applied work to help children have more productive and enriching lives. Periodically they conduct sessions on the web where experts present information about their work and viewers can ask questions through a text chat.

On February 2 PEAR ran a webinar titled "Universities in Partnership: Strategies for Education, Youth Development, and Community Renewal" and you can watch a replay of it here.

Presenters included Ira Harkavy from University of Pennsylvania and a some of the key concepts discussed were:
  • The deep, extensive, and substantive level of engagement that universities and communities can have
  • The difficulty of growing up in urban environment caused by factors including crime, violence, poverty, and high dropout rates
  • The challenge to marshal all of the potential resources to make a difference
  • A decade ago it was radical to think of a university/community/school partnership, now they are much more common
  • The concept of a "democratic partnership" with a democratic and civic emphasis that works with a egalitarian, transparent, and and collegial process

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