The Penn GSE Magazine

Spring 2022

This online edition represents the content of the Spring 2022 hard copy issue that went to print on May 13, 2022.

The cover of the Spring 2022 issue of The Penn GSE Magazine. A disc with four images of educators and students has the title “Fueling Educational Leadership Across The Lifespan” in the center. Other headlines read “Alumni Shaping the Workforce,” “Asking Questions and Building Bridges,” and “Professional Growth through Collaboration.”

Photos by David DeBalko Photography; Eric Sucar, University Communications; JPG Photography; and Lora Reehling.

Cover Story

An instructor speaks with three K-12 students, seated with them around a table in a classroom as they write. All wear masks and colorful T-shirts.

Fueling Educational Leadership across the Lifespan: Penn GSE Develops the Leaders of the Future for PreK–12, Higher Education, and the Workplace

At a time of incredible flux, Penn GSE’s innovative leadership programs are helping create better school environments, amplifying the impact of K–12 leaders, shaping the future of higher education, and producing scholar-practitioners for the workplace.



The Graduate School of Education, University of Pennsylvania

Board of Advisors

Douglas R. Korn, W’84, Chair

Deborah L. Ancona, C’76, GED’77
Olumoroti G. Balogun, GRD’20
Brett H. Barth, W’93
Allison Jane Blitzer, C’91
Harlan B. Cherniak, W’01
Jolley Bruce Christman, GED’71, GR’87
Beth S. Ertel, W’88, WG’92
Jeffrey L. Goldberg, W’83, WG’89
Patricia Grant, GED’01, GRD’04
Joel M. Greenblatt, W’79, WG’80
Andrew Harris Jacobson, WG’93

Marjie G. Katz, GED’90
Gustave K. Lipman, W’94
Jeffrey S. McKibben, W’93
Gregory A. Milken, C’95
Andrea Jill Pollack, C’83, L’87, GED’17
David N. Roberts, W’84
Francisco Jose Rodriguez, W’93
Molly P. Rouse-Terlevich, C’90, GED’00
Michael J. Sorrell, GRD’15
Navin M. Valrani, W’93, GED’18
Steven M. Wagshal, W’94

The Penn GSE Magazine is produced by the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education, 3440 Market Street, Suite 560, Philadelphia, PA 19104. Reproduction of these articles requires written permission from Penn GSE. ©2022 by the Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania. Please contact Penn GSE at 215-898-9704 for references. Please contact to update your address.

Pam Grossman

Wylie Thomas

Juliana Rosati

Editorial Board:

Sara Cantwell, SPP’21
Abisha David, GED’21
Sylvia Davis, C’20
Jane L. Lindahl, GED’18
Jennifer Moore
Kat Stein


Print edition and web graphics by Ten Eleven Design

Web design by Penn GSE IT Web Team

The University of Pennsylvania values diversity and seeks talented students, faculty and staff from diverse backgrounds. The University of Pennsylvania does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, creed, national or ethnic origin, citizenship status, age, disability, veteran status or any other legally protected class status in the administration of its admissions, financial aid, educational or athletic programs, or other University-administered programs or in its employment practices. Questions or complaints regarding this policy should be directed to the Executive Director of the Office of Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity Programs, Franklin Building, Suite 421, 3451 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6205; or 215-898-6993 (Voice).




Letter from the Dean

Dear Alumni and Friends,

 As I write, we are concluding an academic year that has taken place largely in person—a circumstance that would have been far too obvious to note just a few years ago, but which now carries so much significance. It means that our community has enjoyed teaching, learning, working, and celebrating together again after a long period of social distancing and isolation. There has been much to celebrate this spring, from our return to campus, to our top ranking, to our groundbreaking ceremony for the building expansion that will create a state-of-the-art home for education at Penn.


 At the same time, our return to campus does not mean that our world is as it was. We know the impact that COVID-19 has had on our health care workers, but I believe we are only beginning to assess fully the impact all of the events of the past two years have had on the educational landscape. We’ve witnessed profound disruptions to learning, resources, and social and emotional well-being of young people and educators alike.

 We know that the future we face is complex. More and more, society will demand that individuals become lifelong learners who can keep up with the pace of change. I would argue that preparing educators, and especially educational leaders, for what lies ahead is one of the most important undertakings of higher education right now. Now, more than ever, we need a diverse pipeline of educational leaders who are well prepared to respond to an accelerated rate of change in our world, to cultivate individual and community well-being, to turn challenges into opportunities, and to develop innovative solutions to complex problems.

 I am proud that Penn GSE is producing the leaders of the future. As you will read in our cover story on page 6, our robust set of leadership programs prepares working professionals to advance learning across preK–12, higher education, and workplace settings. Our extraordinary faculty, students, and alumni foster an unparalleled, two-way exchange between research and practice that fuels both our programs and the field. Among the alumni and students you will meet are a Philadelphia public school art teacher who is seeking to effect change as a leader, the executive director of a New York City Department of Education leadership academy who is deeply dedicated to student achievement, the dean of a top business school who has been lauded for leadership during the pandemic, and a leader of global talent development who applies academic research in a corporate setting. They are part of an extraordinary network of Penn GSE students, alumni, and faculty propelling educational leadership across institutions and sectors.

 Leadership is a recurring theme in this issue of The Penn GSE Magazine, from the feature about alumni shaping the workforce, to the interview with new faculty member and former superintendent Dr. Andrea Kane, to the story about the Penn GSE Center for Professional Learning, to the flux leadership approaches of Dr. Sharon Ravitch. I hope you will enjoy these and so many other examples of the vision and commitment of our students, alumni, and friends.

 While change has become a constant in our lives in so many ways, something that has not changed is the Penn GSE community’s commitment to unleashing the power of possibility through education. As always, thank you for all that you do for education and Penn GSE.

Pam Grossman signature

Pam Grossman
Dean, Penn Graduate School of Education
George and Diane Weiss Professor of Education

Editor’s note: This issue of The Penn GSE Magazine went to print on May 13, 2022.


Bookshelf Spotlight

Flux Leadership: Real-Time Inquiry for Humanizing Educational Change

Edited by Sharon Ravitch and Chloe Kannan, GRD’21

Published December 2021 by Teachers College Press

Written by a cohort of students in Penn GSE’s Mid-Career Doctoral Program in Educational Leadership, this book introduces a framework for agile, responsive, anti-racist, trauma-informed, healing-centered leadership in times of crisis and beyond.

Cover of book Flux Leadership: Real-Time Inquiry for Humanizing Educational Change


Find other recent books by Penn GSE faculty in the Faculty Bookshelf


A disc with four images of educators and students with the title “Fueling Educational Leadership Across The Lifespan” in the center.

At a time of incredible flux, Penn GSE’s innovative leadership programs are helping create better school environments, amplifying the impact of K-12 leaders, shaping the future of higher education, and producing scholar-practitioners for the workplace.

Digitally illustrated human figures in different bright colors in stand on a newspaper page titled “JOBS” that contains various job listings.

Four Penn GSE alumni representing varied sectors of education share innovative ways they are helping prepare the workers of the future.

Mid-career students chatting and taking notes on a table with an opened laptop.

Three stories of support underline how giving to Penn GSE is opening doors and bringing hope and opportunity to a new era.

Headshot of Andrea Kane wearing a tan blazer with lines, against a blurred backdrop.

New faculty member and former superintendent Dr. Andrea Kane shares her expertise in instructional leadership, access and equity, and more, as she brings her perspective from twenty-five years in public schools to Penn GSE.

Shiny blue hardhats with the “Extraordinary Impact” logo sit on a table.

A pivotal moment in Penn GSE’s history, the groundbreaking ceremony for the School’s dramatic building expansion marked the start of a project that will fulfill a vision of 'One Penn GSE.'

Seven children are spread out on a blackboard surface facing the ground, holding white chalks, and drawing various images including the earth, planets, stars, and a satellite.

A desire to build bridges, create educational access, and learn about different facets of education led these two students to pursue the Education, Culture, and Society program at Penn GSE.

A close-up of Penn’s College Hall shows a stone wall with two vertical windows outlined in red, seen between green tree branches.

Responding to the emerging needs of educators and leaders, Penn GSE’s Center for Professional Learning cultivates learning and connections that endure.


Two individuals, smiling, stand together behind a registration desk. The Penn GSE logo is seen in the background.

Alumni Notes

Penn GSE alumni notes reveal the many ways our graduates are having an impact as educators and leaders.

Read Alumni Notes


Tips from the Educator's Playbook

A collage-style illustration shows a portrait of faculty member Sharon Ravitch, a laptop with the words “Flux Leadership” on the screen, doves, a fist holding a pennant with the words “No justice no peace,” and a document listing the components of the flux leadership approach.

Flux Pedagogy and Flux Leadership

How can educators support students’ whole selves during times of radical change? Penn GSE Professor of Practice Sharon Ravitch and collaborators have integrated interdisciplinary frameworks into the transformative approach of flux pedagogy.

Illustration by Jane Shore

Read More about 'Flux Pedagogy and Flux Leadership'

Professional Learning

Two adult students sit side by side, smiling and looking at a screen in a computer lab.

Deepen your knowledge. Build your networks. Grow your career.

The Penn GSE Center for Professional Learning provides professional development and continuing education for educators, leaders, policy makers, entrepreneurs, and other professionals. Without enrolling in a degree program, you can benefit from learning experiences with Penn faculty and the Penn community.

Learn More about Deepen your knowledge

For Alumni and Friends

Faculty member Caroline Watts is seen between two listeners, speaking in a classroom.

Speaking to an audience of Penn GSE alumni and friends, a panel of three mental health professionals shared ways in which they’re responding to students’ mental health during transitional times.

Read More about 'For Alumni and Friends'

A Way to Say Thank you

A man in front of a brick background smiles and looks into the distance. Blue and red bars appear on the right and left of the photo.

“Attending Penn GSE was a life-changing experience for me. My program, now known as the Independent School Teaching Residency, gave me the space to try things out in the classroom and ultimately find my identity as an educator while learning from an incredible community of mentors and colleagues. I give to the Penn GSE Annual Fund as a way to say thank you and to help future educators experience the same opportunities that I did. ”

—Matthew DeNunzio, GED’18
Economics Teacher, Loomis Chaffee School

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