Higher Education Division’s Gasman named to Berkowitz Chair

May 31, 2017

Marybeth Gasman, a Penn GSE professor of higher education, has been named the Judy & Howard Berkowitz Professor in Education.

A noted education historian, Gasman’s areas of expertise include the history of American higher education, historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs), minority serving institutions (MSIs), African American leadership, and fundraising and philanthropy. Gasman is the founding director of the Penn Center for Minority Serving Institutions. The Center, which launched in 2014, works to amplify the contributions and support MSIs and those scholars interested in them. Dr. Gasman holds secondary appointments in History, Africana Studies, and the School of Social Policy and Practice at the University of Pennsylvania. 

Dr. Marybeth Gasman (second from left) with Center for MSIs staff and Penn GSE students/alumnae Carolyn Nalewajko, Tope Ligali, and Paola Esmieu

Gasman has written or edited 22 books, and eight have won research awards, including Educating a Diverse Nation, published in 2015. She has written over 200 peer-reviewed articles, scholarly essays, and book chapters. In addition to her numerous academic publications, she is a regular contributor to the Chronicle of Higher Education, DiverseInside Higher Education, the Washington Post, and the New York Times. Her research has been featured in the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Wall Street JournalTime, CNN, and on National Public Radio. An outspoken and prolific writer, Gasman has penned 350 opinion articles for the nation’s newspapers and magazines and is ranked by Education Week as one of the most influential education scholars in the nation. Last year, she was named one of LinkedIn’s Top Voices in Education. 

“Marybeth Gasman is both passionate and highly productive – a wonderful combination in a scholar of her caliber,” said Penn GSE Dean Pam Grossman. “The reach and scale of her work on minority-serving institutions is unrivaled, and this endowed chair underscores GSE’s commitment to the impact of her work.”

Gasman has raised over $22 million in grant funding to support her research and that of her students, mentees, and MSI partners.  In addition to her teaching and research duties, she serves on the board of trustees of The College Board as well as Paul Quinn College, a small, urban, HBCU in Dallas, Texas. Gasman has received the University of Pennsylvania’s Provost Award for Distinguished Ph.D. Teaching and Mentoring, and served as the dissertation chair for nearly 65 doctoral students since she joined the university in 2003.

The Judy & Howard Berkowitz Chair was endowed in 1995 with a gift from Judy and Howard Berkowitz. This Chair was donated by the Berkowitz family in order to facilitate a study of ethnic relations, cultural pluralism, and diversity as they relate to education. The Chair was most recently held by Penn GSE’s Professor Stanton Wortham, who became dean of the Boston College Lynch School of Education in the summer of 2016.


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