Teachers College has announced that Professor of Education Michelle Knight-Manuel will serve as the next Dean at the University of Denver’s Morgridge College of Education (MCE). Knight-Manuel joins Denver amid prolific service as the Executive Editor of the Teachers College Record, the nation’s oldest peer-reviewed journal of research, analysis, and commentary in the field of education.
“I am honored and thrilled to be joining the University of Denver as the Dean of the Morgridge College of Education,” said Knight-Manuel, whose appointment was announced this week. “I am deeply grateful to the many individuals at Teachers College – and those throughout my career – who have opened doors of opportunity for me by showing me what was possible. I look forward to carrying this forward and doing the same for others in my new role.”
The University of Denver, a private research institution, will welcome Knight-Manuel on July 1, 2022. Her leadership will follow her own extensive scholarship on college readiness and access, immigrant youth’s civic engagement, culturally relevant teacher preparation and professional development.
"Michelle Knight-Manuel's significant leadership and research on educational equity have strengthened our academic community at Teachers College and scholarship at large,” said President Thomas Bailey. “We look forward to watching Michelle lead the Morgridge College of Education with the same distinctive passion for education and inquiry that benefitted all of us during her time at TC, and surely, will help continue to shape the next generation of educators.”
After rising to the helm of the TC Record in 2019, Knight-Manuel championed a transformative new era for the journal—the nation’s oldest journal devoted to education and educational research—with an expanded emphasis on diversity, equity, inclusion and justice. Knight-Manuel and colleagues facilitated and amplified a chorus of diverse new voices in the publication, with scholars particularly engaged with educational and societal equity.
Specifically, Knight-Manuel expanded articles and contributions to embrace researchers and educators working at — or affiliated with — community colleges, minority-institutions, public school districts, research institutes and community organizations. And she launched initiatives to foster a more inclusive publishing environment, particularly for emerging and early career scholars.
Together with the TCR team, Knight-Manuel also developed the journal as a resource for teachers, parents and others in the community beyond higher education. She expanded its virtual offerings with book talks, webinars, and renewed emphasis on facilitating academic discourse in digital spaces like Twitter. And she diversified its editorial and production staffs, including graduate assistants and students as collaborators.
“During her more than two decades at Teachers College, Professor Michelle Knight-Manuel has demonstrated innovation, excellence and leadership as a scholar, administrator and a colleague,” said Stephanie J. Rowley, TC’s Provost, Dean and Vice President for Academic Affairs. “She has made a mark on multiple levels, through her scholarship and commitment to making education more accessible and equitable for all students, her deep understanding and sensitivity to the perspectives of myriad stakeholders – from education practitioners to emerging scholars – and her visionary transformation of the Teachers College Record over the past two and a half years. Michelle is a cherished colleague who will be greatly missed.”
A former middle school ESL/French teacher and college advisor, Knight-Manuel is the author of numerous articles and two books with her former TC student, co-author Joanne Marciano, Classroom Cultures: Equitable Schooling for Racially Diverse Youth and College Ready: Preparing Black and Latino Youth for Higher Education through a Culturally Relevant Lens. (One of her most recent articles, published in The Record last year with her co-author and former TC student Vaughn Watson, is titled “Humanizing the Black Immigrant Body: Envisioning Diaspora Literacies of Youth and Young Adults from West African Countries.”)
Knight-Manuel previously served as Associate Dean and Senior Advisor to TC’s Provost, and also as Director of Culturally Relevant College and Career Readiness for the New York City Department of Education’s Expanded Success Initiative concurrent with her professorship at TC. She is the recipient of several honors and awards, including the 2020 AERA Willystine Goodsell Award for Advancing Women in Education; the American Educational Research Association’s Research Service Project Award; a Faculty Research Innovation Award at Teachers College; and a Spencer Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship.
In her departure for Denver, Knight-Manuel joins a broader collective of Teachers College community members making an impact across the globe. “I am so proud of her achievement,” Rowley said, “and cannot wait to see all that she accomplishes in preparing our future teachers, counselors, school leaders and other vital education professionals as the terrific new dean of the Morgridge College of Education.”