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


Community > NYCUDL/Columbia Debate Institute

NYCUDL/Columbia Debate Institute

NYCUDL/Columbia University Debate Institute 2012

At Teachers College, Columbia University

Sponsored by the Institute for Urban and Minority Education, Teachers College, Columbia University


Scholars/Varsity Institute: June 28--Aug. 10, 2012



June 28-July 14

Monday-Friday: 9:00 AM-8:00 PM

Saturday:12:00 PM-8:00 PM

July 16-August 10

9:00 AM-4:00 PM (Monday-Friday only)


Two-week Institute: Aug. 13-Aug. 25, 2012



9:00 AM-4:00 PM (Monday-Friday)


Institute Location: Teachers College, Columbia University: 525 W 125th St., New York, NY.

About the Institutes

Scholars Institute: June 28--Aug. 10, 2012

The Scholars Institute is an intense, six-week, summer debate institute/workshop for 20 varsity high school debaters.


Vision and Curriculum

We have a radical vision for the institute to foster powerful readers, writers, thinkers, researchers, speakers, and change-makers. We are committed to providing a culturally relevant, fun, rigorous, and well-rounded institute that provides students with the necessary training and supplies that prepare the students to debate the 2012-13 National Topic:


Resolved: The United States federal government should substantially increase its transportation infrastructure investment in the United States.

In addition to a focusing on literature around next year's topic, over the course of the summer we will be covering:

●      Fundamentals of debate theory including: argument theory, counterplan/counter-advocacies, disadvantages, kritiks, topicality, framework, other procedurals, and more. 

●      Case construction. Students will leave with Affirmative and Negative cases, arguments and blocks.

●      Secondary research methods (researching for next year's topic in books, journals, online resources etc.)

●      Original research methods which includes: creating research questions and designing research projects; original data collection (interviewing strategies, holding focus groups, taking field notes, video documentation); analyzing, coding and organizing data; writing research findings; and writing white papers that can be used for submitting articles for publication in academic journals and for academic conference presentations.

●      Introduction to theory including: critical, social, political, feminist, postcolonial, critical race, critical pedagogy, media and cultural studies, Hip-Hop, postmodernism, psychoanalysis, and more. 

●      Practice debates and strengthening debate techniques including: flowing, organizing evidence, line-by-line refutation, overviews, storytelling, rebuttals, case construction, strategizing, judge adaptation, cross-examination, and more. 

●      Creative media production. We have a recording studio and access to video cameras and a video/media lab. Students will also be encouraged to create blogs, tweet, and work with social networking sites and other online and digital media in order to have multiple platforms to disseminate their voices and ideas for change to a global audience. 

●      Additional curriculum includes: applying for college, scholarships, & employment.


And we'll have fun, amazing guest speakers, opportunities to learn from other professors at Teachers College and colleges and universities from around the region, and access to state-of-the art technologically equipped classrooms at Teachers College, Columbia University. 

Two-Week Institute: Aug. 13-Aug. 25, 2012*

The Two-Week Institute is a two-week, summer debate institute/workshop for 50 Novice, Junior Varsity, and Varsity debaters in grades 9-12, 10 of whom will be mentors who attended the Scholars/Varsity institute.

This institute runs from 9am-4pm during weekdays.

Vision and Curriculun

Our vision for the institute is to foster powerful readers, writers, thinkers, researchers, speakers, and change-makers. We are committed to providing a culturally relevant, fun, rigorous, and well-rounded institute. In addition to a focusing on literature around next year's topic, over the course of the summer we will be covering many of the areas mentioned above that are essential for preparing students to debate at tournaments during the 2012-2013 debate season.

●      Secondary research methods (researching for next year's topic in books, journals, online resources etc.)

●      Affirmative and negative case construction. Students will leave with Affirmative and Negative cases, arguments and blocks.

●      Fundamentals of debate theory including: argument theory, counterplan/counter-advocacies, disadvantages, kritiks, topicality, performance/movements/Hip-Hop, framework, other procedurals, and more.

●      Debate technique fundamentals including: flowing, organizing evidence, storytelling, rebuttals, case construction, strategizing, judge adaptation, cross-examination, and more. 

●      Introduction to theory.

●      Practice debates.


Institute Director and Instructor, June 28-August 25

Jen Johnson is a PhD student in English Education at Teachers College, Columbia University. Jen is a IUME graduate fellow and a Hip-Hop Education Center Fellow at New York University. She is also an adjunct professor of literacy at Manhattanville College. She is the former executive director of the Seattle Debate Foundation, founder and director of the Seattle Debate Institute at the University of Washington, a two-week residential high school program, 2005-2008. She has taught at summer debate institutes around the country including: Stanford University, Bates College, University of Maryland, College Park, University of California, Berkeley and established and directed a residential summer debate institute at the University of California, Santa Cruz before she directed the Bay Area Urban Debate League from 2001-2003. Jen holds a Master of Arts in Media, Culture and Communication from New York University and a Bachelor of Arts in Ethnic Studies from University of California, Berkeley.

Phone: (206) 910-7920; Email:

Week One: June 28-July 5

Dr. Shanara Reid-Brinkley is an Assistant Professor of Communications and the Director of Debate at the University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Reid-Brinkley focuses her scholarly research on African American culture and public argumentation, with a research program specializing in public argument and performance, cultural studies, and Black Feminist Theory. Reid-Brinkley has a specific research interest in black popular culture, including hip hop politics, culture, and activism. As the Director of Debate, Reid-Brinkley is responsible for the competitive arm of the William Pitt Debating Union, recruiting students from around the country to participate in the University’s long history of successful competition. Her current scholarship focuses on the interaction between black culture and rhetorical practice and social conflict within high school and college policy debate. Reid-Brinkley also served as a member of the Board of Directors for the Seattle Debate Foundation.

Rashad Evans is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania Law School and former national champion debater at the University of West Georgia.  Rashad is currently the Director of Debate at Western Connecticut State University and was previously the Director of Debate at the University of Florida where he also taught classes related to Law & Communication.  Rashad has previously taught at the Emory, UMKC, Michigan and Wake Forest debate camps.

Christopher Randall studies public service at Rutgers University where he also debates. He was also the co-captain for the Forest Park High School debate team in Baltimore where he debated on the national circuit with Dayvon Love (former CEDA National Champion). Among his accomplishments as a high school debater was winning the Urban Debate League regional championship in 2001. He later became a high school coach, spending seven years establishing and coaching the Baltimore Talent Development Debate Program under the direction of Mr. Jerrell Baker. During this time period, the UDL team grew to national prominence, and one of his students, Kevin Whitley, became the first UDL debater to be named a Kentucky Fellow, one of the most prestigious honors that can be bestowed upon a high school debater. The Talent Development program culminated in their appearance at the Tournament of Champions. In addition to debating for Rutgers, Christopher volunteers teaching and coaching students from both the New York City and New Jersey Urban Debate Leagues. Christopher plans to attend law school at Columbia University.

Week Two: July 5-13

Judy Butler is one of the most experienced debate instructors in the nation, having taught at over 50 debate workshop sessions. Judy is the founder and former debate coach for Spelman University and has also coached at Emory University, Georgia State University, and Woodward Academy. Judy also is the co-founder of Stanford National Forensic Institute and 20-year instructor there. For several years Judy worked as an independent contractor for the Federal Public Defender Program as a litigation investigator on State Habeas capital cases. Judy currently coaches for the University of West Georgia.  

Damiyr Davis is a rising sophomore at the University of West Georgia. Damiyr was part of the freshman debate team at the University of West Georgia, alongside partner Miguel Feliciano, to break at the National Debate Tournament, finishing among the top sixteen teams in the country. In addition to breaking at the NDT , West Georgia DF has been blazing the college debate national circuit breaking and winning different national tournaments including The Fear and Loathing in Dallas tournament at the University of Texas Dallas. Damiyr was also a successful high school debater winning top speaker at the Tournament of Champions his senior year in addition to being apart of the first New York Urban Debate League team to make it to the Tournaments of Champions for two consecutive years, claiming the top seeded team in 2011. From 2009- 2011 Damiyr organized New York City public and private school students to go to New Orleans through the non-for profit New York 2 New Orleans, working on urban farming partnerships. Damiyr’s arguments have focused on Race and History specifically the work of Frantz Fanon, Hortense Spillers, many others theorizing Black positionality in modernity. Damiyr’s interest in connecting the academy to community sustainability lead to his attendance of the Critical Prison Studies ASA conference as a member of a roundtable with Dylan Rodriguez, Professor and Chair of the Department of Ethnic Studies at UC Riverside where fellow debaters, educators, and community organizers held a discussion on the Prison Industrial Complex and African American disenfranchisement.

Phone: 646-812-1497


Miguel Feliciano is a sophomore at the University of West Georgia. Miguel recently finished as the only Freshman team to make it to the Sweet Sixteen of the 2012 collegiate National Debate Tournament (NDT). Miguel was a high school policy debater for Beacon High School and began his debate career as a member of the New York Urban Debate League. As a high school debater, he earned a total of eight qualifying bids to the Tournament of Champions (TOC) and qualified twice for that tournament, the most prestigious national high school debate tournament in the country. In his senior year of debating in high school, Miguel won numerous national tournaments and reached the feat of being the 1st seed at the TOC, being undefeated in all of the preliminary rounds at the tournament. Miguel’s scholarship in debate is concerned with investigating the relationship between civil society and racial relations. This scholarship has translated into winning national tournaments such as Big Bronx and Lexington, being a finalist of the Barkley Forum at Emory University, and advancing to top-level elimination rounds at some of the most prestigious tournaments in the country including Harvard, Blake, Montgomery Bell Academy, and Greenhill.

Week Three and Four: July 13-20; July 20-27

David Peterson is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Sociology at the University of California at Irvine, a member of the UC Irvine Critical Theory Emphasis (CTE) Program, and a fellow of the University of California Center for New Racial Studies (UCCNRS).   He holds master’s degrees from UC Irvine (Sociology) and the University of Louisville (Pan-African Studies). David’s academic research is focused generally on the theorization of race and racism and his work focuses specifically on the ways in which questions of racial power and privilege are broached, evaded and sidelined in public discourse.  Over the last decade David has taught debate at the high school and college level throughout the United States, China and South Korea. He has worked with the Urban Debate Program in Los Angeles, Louisville, Baltimore, and New York City. As an undergraduate student at CSU Long Beach, David was a three-time qualifier to the National Debate Tournament. He currently lives in Long Beach California.

Week Four: July 20-27

Toni Hill has been blazing the stage from coast to coast for almost two decades. She grew up immersed in performing arts: Music, theater, spoken word poetry, dance, television broadcast, and modeling. Ms. Hill has collaborated, written and/or recorded with noted Hip Hop artist Braille, Sleep and Grayskul. She teamed up with all female writing team Big Drawz in New York to pen a song for neo soul artist Kindred the Family Soul. She also co wrote a song with internationally known dancer & singer Francesca Maria, to name a few. Through her own solo projects, as half of the revered female duo, Sirens Echo, and as a member of the crews, Hungry Mob, and Oldominion, she has shared stages with such notables as Gil Scott-Heron, Saul Williams, KRS One, Black-Eyed Peas, Fishbone, E-40, Zap Mama, Common, the legendary Roots crew and the Coup. She has produced/co executive produced several projects including the Sirens Echo, "Psalms of the Sirens" album and a DVD documentary. Toni is also a dedicated educator and activist who lends her energies to several organizations in the social justice & empowerment movement including: Feed The People (Atlanta), Youth speaks (Seattle), Youth summit (Portland), Aloud (New York ,New York) Guerrilla Theatre (Portland), Sisterz of the Underground (San Francisco), Power Of Hope (Seattle) and the Seattle Debate Foundation. Partnering with Evergreen State College and the Gateways Program she has served as teacher and mentor to incarcerated youth at the Maple Lane and Green Hill facilities in Washington. Toni has been a guest speaker, panelist, and lecturer at colleges and universities throughout the country.

David Peterson will also continue working through week four.

Week Five: July 27-August 3

Elizabeth Jones received her J.D. from Georgetown University. She has a Master of Arts from the University of Louisville in Pan-African Studies, with a concentration in Africa and the Diaspora. She was the Vice President of the Louisville Debate Society from 2000-2004. While debating for Louisville she was the 1st Speaker at the Cross-Examination Debate Association (CEDA) National Tournament in 2004 and the 1st Speaker CEDA District Tournament that same year. For the last year she has been an Associate Professor of Pan-African Studies at the University of Louisville.

Week Six: August 3-August 10

Deverick Murray is the Vice President of Youth Development for Leaders of a Beautiful Struggle, Baltimore’s progressive policy think tank dedicated to “transforming Baltimore through policy action.”  Deverick was the President of the Black Student Union at Towson University and an active member of Towson’s history-making debate team, achieving numerous victories among which was being an Octa-finalist at CEDA Nationals his first year of debating, and a quarterfinalist for the next three years. Deverick is an extremely dynamic speaker, poet, recording artist, and has traveled around Baltimore to make citizens aware of socio-political issues in the city. Deverick received his Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies with a track in social justice.

LaToya Williams-Green is Master’s candidate in the Communication Department at WakeForest University and holds a bachelors degree of fine arts in Communication at Emporia StateUniversity. Born in Kansas City, Missouri, she has been involved in performing and publicspeaking since 2000. With a competitive debate career spanning 8 years, LaToya is an alumof the Debate-Kansas City Urban Debate League, Lincoln Prep Debate, and Emporia StateDebate. As a debater LaToya achieved many honors including 13th speaker at the NationalDebate Tournament and being awarded the 2012 Brian “Baby Jo” Johnston Debater of the YearAward at the 2012 Cross-Examination Debate Association Championship Tournament. LaToyawas the first Black woman in the history of Emporia State University to debate, allowing herand partner, Ryan Wash, to be the first Black team. In addition to debate, LaToya, also knownas “HearSay tha Poet”, performs spoken word and has been gracing stages with her craft forsince 2002. Fusing the divide between public policy and poetry, LaToya gained visibility in thedebate activity by integrating the two in speeches and advocacy. Using her rhetorical prowess as a unique to tool to articulate the needs of oppressed people, LaToya was a three-time qualifier to the National Debate Tournament. She is lives in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

Willie Johnson is the assistant director of debate at City University of New York and the assistant coach for Bronx Law, Government and Justice. Willie will be working the Two-Week institute from August 13-August 28.

Support Staff

Carla Becker is the director of teacher education in the Department of Music at Teachers College, Columbia University.Carla also works with the Institute for Urban and Minority Education at Teachers College, Columbia University.

NYCUDL Fellows

Lenny Herrera is going to be a freshman at Towson University.Lenny debated for Bronx School of Law, Government, and Justice. Among many of his accomplishments, Lenny was a semifinalist at the 2012 New York State Debate Championship and a quarterfinalist at the National Urban Debate League Championships in 2012.

Purti Pareek is going to be a freshman at University of Massachusetts- Amherst. She pursues to study Africana Studies/Philosophy and Creative Writing with a concentration on poetry. While debating for Brooklyn Tech (with a novice!), she cleared at almost every national tournament and won top speaker honors at The Westchester Classic. Her argumentation is revolved around a plethora of critical authors such as Michel Foucault, Frank B. Wilderson III, and even Slavoj Zizek. She has ran a variety of argumentation - ranging from capitalism to feminism to race to even T/policy framework good. However, the interests of race related arguments have dominated her thought process for the majority of her senior year - eventually influencing her college major choice. She believes that hard work can truly achieve anything and hopes that your hard work throughout the camp will translate into not only victory, but pedagogical benefits also. She will be available from June 29th to July 14th at the Scholar’s camp and hopes to be any help anyone needs!

Stephon Adams is a sophomore at Buffalo State College. He is currently a Mechanical Engineering student and hopes to pursue a career as a general practitioner in medicine. He debated for Metropolitan Corporate Academy High School (M.C.A.). While debating with his partner Devonte Escoffery at M.C.A, Stephon qualified for prestigious regional and national tournaments such as CFL, NFL, and NAUDL and advanced to elimination rounds at some of the most rigorous tournaments in the country including Harvard and Emory. In 2011, along with his partner Devonte, Stephon qualified and debated at the TOC (Tournament of Champions), the most prestigious high school debate tournament in the country, becoming one of the first team in the NYUDL and the first team from Brooklyn, NY, to have ever attended. While debating, Stephon and Devonte resisted the traditional culturally exclusive norms of debate and revolutionized debate with their distinct style of Hip-Hop Debate as a mode of argumentation and form of presentation including the brilliant weaving of rap, dance, and visual arts with academic research. This style consisted of both partners rapping their evidence as well as dancing and using their racialized bodies as evidence of the power of performative pedagogy to foster racial awareness and culturally relevant educational environments. Stephon goes by the rap and dance moniker, “The E-Lusion,” and uses his talents within his academic pursuits. Being of West Indian descent, Stephon believes that current education should change to include the voices of Black and Brown students, as well as having a core dialogue and connection between the teacher and the student as well as a connection to the real world. He also believes that Math and Science programs should become more inclusive to African-American, Afro-Caribbean/West indian and Latino/Chicana/o students. He is on a mission to change the way teachers think and teach at his current school, and hopes to make an impact in changing the way people see the world around them.   

Lyra DeCastro will be a Freshman at Simmons College this fall. She has debate for Brooklyn Technical Highschool for four years. She has experience in running a variety of arguments from Heg good to theory to Critical Race theory as well as the Capitalism Kritik. That being said, her main focus is on the Kritikal and Performance sides of debate. She has cleared at National Tournaments and was a quaterfinalist and the NAUDL Championship.

Additional Fellows to be added soon!

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