“Their story, yours and mine — it’s what we all carry with us on this trip we take, and we owe it to each other to respect our stories and learn from them.”

William Carlos Wiliams

Over a career in the education and non profit sector, I have gained an in-depth understanding of communities and the institutions within which they function. Every community is a learning community because it is in the everyday interactions that individuals build relationships and learn from each other. My commitment to learning for all, social justice and related issues of equity along with a passion for building inclusive communities comes from this work of observing and identifying the learning opportunities within communities. 

David Perkins, distinguished scholar, author of ‘Smart Schools’ among other books on education and Chair of my doctoral dissertation committee at Harvard, referring to my work with him writes in a letter, Her energy for both taking an analytical look at the world and considering how the world might become a better place is notable. Since the beginning of my career when I started a creative arts program for disabled children, I have focused on thinking and working on ways to leverage existing cultural practices, the creative arts and more recently digital technologies in building relationships and a sense of belonging.  Over the years this work took place in formal K - 12 settings, in after school programs, in informal educational settings and in higher education and community organizations . My current work within a non profit calls for weaving community together both internally and with individuals and organizations in  the wider community. 

To summarize, my urge to make the world a better place that Perkins refers to above, comes from a place of curiosity about the world and the relationships within it, a sense of optimism, resilience in the face of resistance to some ideas that are understandably a challenge to accept initially as they call for a new way of thinking, and empathetic compassion, a quality that requires regular practice.  I look to engage in thoughtful exploration of ways in which we can build a more sustainable and equitable world.  This is an urgent need and a challenge in a world riven with polemics and conflicts. I have made a commitment to rise to this challenge.

Thinking, Learning & Practice

How does learning happen outside formal classroom settings? What is the role of tools [technology], the body and senses in learning? How does this impact the design of learning interventions, educational programs and community building? My doctoral research drew from the literature on embodiment and cognition to better understand these questions and translate them into practice. 

From 2002 to 2008 I worked at Harvard Graduate School of Education while pursuing my doctoral degree. I was the head teaching fellow for Professor David Perkins who was also the Chair of my doctoral committee. In addition I was a teaching fellow for Professors Mary Catherine Bateson, Matthew Jukes, Wendy Luttrell & David Rose.

Upon obtaining my doctoral degree in 2008 and until 2021, I worked as a consultant with K - 12 schools and global organizations including Girl Rising and Anudip Foundation in the areas of digital education technologies and curriculum development. 

Alongside the consulting work, I pursued my passion for cultural practices, experiences gained in community arts to maintain a creative placemaking and community arts practice. Stir a Memory the first project that began in 2008 has now expanded to Memories and Stories™.

Currently I bridge theory and practice, drawing from the positive psychology literature and work on operationalizing the concept of joy in community while continuing to utilize the arts in creative placemaking and community arts projects.