Recently the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) released the results of its Program for International Student Assessment (PISA), a leading survey of education systems conducted every three years and taken by 15-year-olds in 65 countries. The results revealed that U.S. student scores are stagnant while other countries’ are improving. With this in mind, for the U.S., and Chicago specifically, to become more capable of impact on a global scale, we need to fortify our foundations through education. From a local perspective, we need a “Chicago 3.0” plan.
2014 is shaping up to be a big year for NLU’s P.A.C.E. program.
P.A.C.E. — the Professional Assistance Center for Education for young adults with multiple learning disabilities — runs a two-year program that helps students build life skills and gain a greater sense of independence. And a big part is placing these students in meaningful internships to prepare them for future careers. Wendi Gearing oversees that effort and hopes to expand internship sites further in the new year after securing partnerships in 2013 with Mario Tricoci salon, Crafty Beaver hardware and Unleashed dog daycare, to name a few. In addition, she said P.A.C.E. will continue to grow its strong relationship with Rush University Medical Center — one that’s led to the hire of former students.
Carlos Azcoitia, Ed.D., NLU Distinguished Professor of Practice and member of the Chicago Board of Education, recently wrote an opinion piece for Catalyst Chicago, “Creating equity and excellence for all schools.”
Chicago remains the undisputed capital of improv comedy — a place that for decades has attracted top talent, developed it on local stages, and sent it along to television and the big screen. With a priority on audience engagement and performing in the moment, improv also develops skills that have real applications off stage. It’s an idea that’s catching on at NLU.
As one of NLU’s newest employees, Danny McGuire is definitely staying busy. You’ll most often find him roving Chicagoland as a key part of the outreach effort for the University’s successful new Criminal Justice program, which launched in 2012.
In his visits to cadet explorer groups, community colleges and local police departments, Danny stresses the importance of higher education, no matter what his audience — curious teenagers, college transfer students or working police — not only for one’s career but as an extension of service, a chance to do something more. It’s a concept he knows well.
Teri Talan, Ed.D., Director of Policy Initiatives at NLU’s McCormick Center, recently discussed the importance of early childhood education and the challenges faced in this area, as well as how parents and entire communities can make a positive impact. This program aired on Chicago Access Network Television (CAN TV).
Ask the average American about Mongolia and you might not get much beyond Genghis Khan — if you’re lucky. You could’ve counted NLU Professor Kristin Lems in this large group not in the know until October 1, when she traveled to Mongolia as part of a project to help teachers of English language learners in this exciting setting.