Institute for Urban and Minority Education
Teachers College, Columbia University
Teachers College
Columbia University

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RSVP for a Special Guest Lecture with Dr. Shirley Steinberg

IUME is excited to announce that Dr. Shirley Steinberg, Research Professor of Youth Studies at the University of Calgary and Consulting Professor and Director of the Institute of Youth and Community Research at the University of the West of Scotland, will be speaking at Teachers College! Dr. Steinberg has published countless books on youth culture, and her upcoming talk is entitled "Islamic Youth as Political Pawns: Critically Deconstructing Fear and Media.

To RSVP for Dr. Steinberg's lecture, please click here.

IUME Director Ernest Morrell's NCTE Presidential Address Published

IUME Director Ernest Morrell's 2014 NCTE Presidential Address has just been published by the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE). Morrell served as NCTE President from 2013-2014, and at this year's annual conference in Boston, he gave the annual President Address as a capstone to the conference. Congratulations once again for completing his Presidential year at NCTE and leading--and inspiring--tens of thousands of English teachers nationwide!

Click here
to read the recently published speech on the NCTE website and click here to watch a recorded video of his speech on the IUME YouTube channel.

Learn More About IUME's Literacy Teachers Initiative (LTI) Project

 IUME was excited to announce the launch of the Literacy Teachers Initiative (LTI) Project in spring, 2012. Since then, we have partnered with dynamic elementary and middle school teachers from Harlem and Brooklyn in an effort to collaboratively work toward finding increased pedagogical methods for students. The LTI Project is led by Dr. Jodene Morrell of Teachers College. We have grown in number and ideas each year, received competitive research grants, presented at Teachers College and state, national, and international conferences, and written for publication.

Check out our LTI page for more information and check out the biographies of the Teacher Fellows here!

Welcome to our newest IUME Postdoctoral and Faculty Fellows!

We are excited to welcome our newest group of accomplished and innovative IUME Fellows who will be working with us this year. Our IUME Faculty Fellows include Dr. Brian Lozenski, from Metropolitan State University, and Deron Wallace, from the University of Cambridge. In addition, Teachers College's Minority Postdoctoral Fellow, Dr. Monique Lane, from the University of California-Los Angeles (UCLA), will also be be a part of IUME research this year.

Learn more about them on our Faculty Fellow page and Postdoctoral Fellow page.

Learn More about the Youth Historians in Harlem Program!

The Youth Historians in Harlem (YHH) project, sponsored by IUME, is a new critical approach to teaching history in urban schools in Harlem, focusing on empowering minority youth through their own cultural experiences, involving students in the practice of "doing" history through guided projects, programs, and participatory action research. YHH seeks to increase students' interest in history through innovative and engaging pedagogical approaches that help them become historians, researching the rich historical past of ‘their’ Harlem community. While YHIH seeks to advance the historical knowledge of education in Harlem, above all, our project seeks to make history relevant to urban students and help increase academic achievement. To learn more about this exciting project, visit the official website here.

Subscribe to our IUME YouTube Channel!

Have you visited the official IUME YouTube page recently? Want to learn more about IUME? Make sure to stop by our YouTube page here and watch a few of our videos and subscribe!. Not only do we keep a collection of IUME events and Colloquia, but our video team prepares short clips on critical research. The most recent Beyond Bullying presentation is now available, as is our December Colloquium and other great clips that should be shared!

In our increasingly digital and mutlimodal era, we believe strongly in collaborative educational content, so make sure to check back often and subscribe to your channel.


About Us > The Hotel Theresa

The Hotel Theresa

IUME is proud to conduct itself in the historic Hotel Theresa--now known as Theresa Tower--in the heart of Harlem. As the late Harvard scholar Dr. Sondra Kathryn Wilson elegantly said, "few people in Harlem know that the slim, white, thirteen-story building that stands on the historic corner of Seventh Avenue and 125th was, in its day, as famous as the Apollo Theater or the Savoy Ballroom, and more central to the history of Harlem than any other building there." Built in 1913 [pictured on left], the New York Times states that the Hotel Theresa "symbolized the new high-rise aspirations of 20th-century Harlem. Three decades later and newly integrated, it offered hope to black New Yorkers." Although operated and originally stayed at only by whites through the first three decades of its existance, since the 1940s when Harlem began to integrate, the Hotel Theresa soon became seen as "a center for African-American events," eventually becoming known as the "Waldorf of Harlem." Representative of the growing black population in Harlem, the Hotel Theresa became a landmark structure, symbolic to struggle for African Americans in New York while also acting as refuge for black American seeking an overnight stay.

During this era, a plethora of famous black actors, musicians and sports icons stayed at the Hotel--becoming the spot for a "who's who" in African American life. For example, Louis Armstrong, Sugar Ray Robinson, Lena Horne, Josephine Baker, Dorothy Dandridge, Duke Ellington, Muhammad Ali, Dinah Washington, Ray Charles, Little Richard and Jimi Hendrix all were guests at the Hotel Theresa. However, it remains vital to understand why these important black figures stayed at the Hotel--many prestigious hotels throughout New York City still denied African American guests. Therefore, the Hotel Theresa is rooted in civil rights, granting access to black guests at a time when such access to hotels of comparable quality was a rarity.

In addition, the Hotel Theresa did not just host entertainment superstars and black businessman, but infamous world icons; for example, in 1960, Cuban Prime Minister Fidel Castro stayed at the Hotel Theresa. Infamous black leader Malcom X hosted his Organization of Afro-American Unity at the hotel on many occasions. Also in 1960, Soviet Union leader Nikita Khruschev stayed at the Hotel, meeting Castro inside. 1960 continued to be a highlight for the Hotel Theresa; then-U.S. Presidential Nominee John F. Kennedy campaigned at the Hotel as did former First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt. Unfortunately, however, issues within Harlem contributed to Hotel Theresa closure in 1967.

Four years later, Hotel Theresa re-opened as a non-hotel building under the guise of Theresa Towers--the name which it still officially goes by today. Although no longer a hotel, Theresa Towers has a rich historical legacy to Harlem and to civil rights. Although it will never reach the status it did in the middle of the Twentieth century, it has remained a symbol in Harlem that is readily visible throughout the city. In recent years, Theresa Towers has been visited by former U.S. President Bill Clinton and been filmed in movies such as Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire. It currently serves as the home of the Edmund W. Gordon Campus of Teachers College, Columbia University and is the also the home of the Institute for Urban and Minority Education (IUME). The building was declared a national landmark in 1993.

Above all, IUME's presence in this historic building is important; it is only through remembering and recognizing our past can we change the future. Therefore, not only does IUME allow Teachers College, Columbia University to have a true presence inside Harlem, but underscores the importance of the work that we intend to do by physically conducting such work in a place that is so important to the people we serve.

For more about the significance of Hotel Theresa and IUME, listen below to Director Ernest Morrell:

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