USC Rossier Magazine: Spring/Summer 2020

Can Education Save Democracy?

USC Rossier believes it can.

“Democracy cannot succeed unless those who express their choice are prepared to choose wisely. The real safeguard of democracy, therefore, is education.” President Franklin D. Roosevelt wrote this message to educators in September 1938, during American Education Week. His words were clear: An educated democracy is the only democracy that works.

Nettie Hunt, sitting on steps of the Supreme Court in 1954
Dean’s Byline

The Health of Our Educational Institutions Reflects the Health of Our Democracy

How do we leverage the power of our schools to defend against threats to our democratic systems?

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(Illustration/Heather Monahan)
In Conversation

Julie Marsh on why local power is essential to democracy

USC Rossier Professor of Education Policy discusses strategies for engaging local stakeholders, her experience as a researcher and how COVID-19 will impact funding for education.

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Featured News

A sixth-grade student at City Heights Prep in San Diego, Calif. (Photo/Rebecca Aranda)

To create the best learning environments, start with self-determined students

Research on the autonomy-supportive classroom shows it increases engagement, teaches students to self-govern and leads to better learning outcomes

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(Illustration/Chris Gash)

Students demand action on climate change. Can schools keep up?

Education systems aren’t prepared for one of democracy’s biggest threats

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Before their annual breakfast, Dean Gallagher poses with women in the Dean’s Superintendents Advisory Group at the ACSA’s Superintendents' Symposium. (Photo/Brian Morri)

Dean Karen Symms Gallagher fights on for equity

Returning to scholarship, Dean Gallagher will investigate what keeps women out of the most powerful jobs in education

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Students at City Heights Prep socialize in the school's large common area during lunch. (Photo/Rebecca Aranda)

How a school of refugees led by a Rossier alum is demonstrating democracy

Elias Vargas EdD ’17 is transforming civic engagement, starting in the classroom

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Gerrel Sayles is a first-year adviser in the USC College Advising Corps at Jordan High School. (Photo/Josh Krause, 211 Photography)

USC CAC adviser Gerrel Sayles is helping turn college from dream to reality

Gold Nikes are his draw, but this sneakerhead’s goal is college attendance

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(Illustration/Heather Monahan)

Mary Helen Immordino-Yang on why democracy needs abstract thinkers

Neuroscientist, psychologist and USC Rossier professor of education discusses adolescent development, her new research center and what her kids have taught her.

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Student & Alumni Stories

(Photo/Stephanie Yantz)

Edgar Fidel Lopez completed the LA Marathon 3 times, but ensuring equity for first-gen students is his next finish line

Edgar Fidel Lopez

The Rossier PhD Student Challenging Expectations—in Foot Races and Higher Ed

(Photo/Lydia Daniller)

Rossier Alum Takes on New Role Leading Stanford’s Black Community Services Center

Rosalind Conerly EdD ’16

Wherever Rosalind Conerly EdD ’16 Goes, She Builds a Sense of Belonging

(Illustration/Chris Gash)
Tips for Educators

Tips for educators during an election year

Professor Artineh Samkian on how to facilitate difficult conversations in the classroom.

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(Illustration/Chris Gash)

Why the top-down governance structures of higher education need revitalizing

Professor Adrianna Kezar on the importance of shared governance in universities.

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