Lee Bynum is a Ph.D. candidate in the History and Education program. Lee has published a book chapter, peer-reviewed articles, commentary, and reference works for the university presses of Oxford, Harvard, NYU, and Columbia. Beginning in autumn 2023, Lee will be an adjunct faculty member with Indiana University’s Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. Additionally, Lee consults on equitable praxis in the performing arts with Aspen Leadership Group and The Inclusion Firm, and has been invited to speak on these topics by the National Endowment for the Arts, the British Consulate in New York, Opera America, the League of American Orchestras, the Museum of Arts and Design, Flint Institute of Music, the Sphinx Organization, Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, and the Universities of Hong Kong, Cape Town, California, Puerto Rico, Virginia, and Birmingham (UK). Lee also cohosts The Score, a New York Times- recommended podcast on art and culture from a Black queer perspective. Lee has held leadership roles at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Minnesota Opera, and Columbia University. Lee received bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Columbia University.
Sherika Campbell is a M.A. student in the History and Education program. A native of Queens, NY, she earned her Bachelor’s in Sociology with minors in Urban Studies and PPE (Philosophy, Politics and Economics) from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. Sherika is an Advancement Administrator for Blue School, an independent lab school. Through professional work and lived experiences as an alumna of the Prep for Prep program, Sherika has become deeply passionate about independent school inclusion and equity practices. Her interests are around: racial identity, diversity, and school exclusivity.
Rachel Klepper is a PhD candidate in History and Education. She received a B.A. from Boston University and majored in History and Anthropology. After graduation, she worked at a youth development organization in Washington DC that partners with public school teachers to lead after-school and summer programs in arts, athletics, and service learning. While experiencing both the significance of after-school opportunities for children and families as well as the challenges that many after-school programs face, she was motivated to learn more about their history. Her dissertation explores the history of after-school programs in New York City in the mid-twentieth century, and how ideas about childhood, philanthropy, social welfare, and education shaped the varied opportunities available to children.
During the pandemic Eric defended "Advanced Instruction: The German University Model at Johns Hopkins University, 1876-1886," a dissertation exploring the emergence of the American research university through a reinterpretation of the seminar at Hopkins as a unique episode in how the transatlantic university related to itself. During his doctoral study in the History program, he worked in a graduate/research assistant capacity for the Gottesman Libraries, as well as for the Columbia Center for New Media Teaching and Learning project Studyplace. Teaching opportunities included assisting Rosalind Rosenberg's year-long course on 20th century women at Barnard, instructing four semesters of the University Writing course at Columbia College, and adjuncting for 5 years at Montclair State University in the Educational Foundations Dept. offering their undergraduate history of education survey. Eric also offered two team-taught graduate courses within the History & Education program at Teachers College, including one on the history of education in New York City that, along with the Center for History & Education and Columbia's Center on Teaching and Learning, produced a companion online teaching, research and mapping tool. Ongoing work aims to produce a book from the dissertation, delve deeper into locale as a research logic in New York City, and more generally, attend as fully as possible to the notion of History & Education as a unique intersection of fields vital to our civic predicaments and possibilities.
After completing her Bachelor’s degree in International Relations: Global Environment, Health and Natural Resources at the University of California, Davis, Natalie spent two years teaching and working for the education nonprofit City Year, before returning to academia to pursue her Master’s in History and Education at Teachers College, Columbia University. While completing her BA at UC Davis she worked at the Student Farm as both a Kids in the Garden Educator and an Ecological Garden Intern. This experience sparked her passion for environmental justice and her curiosity about outdoor spaces and identity. With environmental justice at the forefront of her mind, she began noticing the injustices taking place in the New York City public school system. This ultimately led her to the History and Education Program at TC where she is able to further study the history of educational structures and systems in the U.S. as well as their influence on present-day social justice issues within education. Additionally, as an Arthur Zankel Fellow working on the Nutrition, Garden and Environmental Justice Project at a Harlem middle school, she is able to further apply the academic concepts in a tangible way. Her research interests include the history of food programs in New York City public schools, racially and culturally inclusive nutrition education, and the history of Black activism for environmental justice.
Kelsey Hanf is a teacher, historian, and prolific traveler who has combined her love of exploration with her historical research. After graduating from Wellesley College with a degree in anthropology and religion, she worked with the Episcopal and Anglican churches for several years before transitioning to education. She has lived in Boston, London, and the San Francisco Bay area and has spent months traveling through Europe, Central and South America, and Asia. Given her identity as a globetrotter, Kelsey is interested in the educational value of travel and how it has been viewed historically. She is currently researching an educational initiative from the 1920s that took five hundred students around the globe for a year and hopes to learn more about the value such an enterprise had and its contribution to the development of study abroad programming. When not working, she loves to practice yoga, see Broadway plays, and scuba dive.
Erik Stone is a M.A. student in the History and Education program. He earned his B.A. in International Studies with a concentration in Western Europe and two minors in European Studies and Hellenic Studies at the University of Washington, Seattle. Throughout his undergraduate education he pursued activism and worked as a writing tutor and research assistant, where he developed a keen interest in exploring the intersection between history and research. His own lived experiences as a transgender person combined with his passion for history has led him to be deeply interested in the histories of LGBTQ+ spaces, institutional histories, and the historical development of Queer-positive curricula.
GeColby Youngblood is a first-year student in the Ph.D. in History and Education program at Teachers College, Columbia University. His research interests include the founding and early histories of Historically Black Colleges and Universities, U.S. Reconstruction, and the Redemption of the U.S. South. GeColby, a Mississippi-native, has also accumulated over 12 years of experience as an educator, in both higher education and K-12, where he specializes in student retention issues and developing sense of belonging. He earned a B.A. in English Literature from Alcorn State University and an M.Ed. in Higher Education from the University of North Texas. Currently, he is completing his master’s thesis on Hiram Revels and his role as the founder and first president of Alcorn State University from 1871-1874 at North Carolina Central University.
Lisa A. Monroe is a doctoral student in the History and Education Program at Teachers College, Columbia University. In her primary field of nineteenth-century U.S. history, she seeks to understand whether competing ideas about national identity residing in both America’s common school curricula and in the public arena, ironically, have been indispensable to sustaining pluralistic perspectives essential to our democracy. She asks how efforts to impose a unified state-sponsored curricula—an official American narrative in antebellum America—might have played a role in proliferating divisions among religious, racial, and ethnic populations during the early national period. She considers whether currents of those early divisions persist today in sustaining the prolonged reckoning that America has yet to make with its past.
In her primary occupation, Lisa is on staff at the Gilder Lehrman Center for the Study of Slavery, Resistance, and Abolition (GLC) at the MacMillan Center at Yale University, where she is a project manager for the GLC’s participation in the project, “Legacies of American Slavery: Reckoning with the Past,” a Mellon Foundation funded collaborative initiative directed by the Council on Independent Colleges. Prior to her doctoral study, her career in public service as a writer for elected officials in Baltimore, Maryland and Hartford, Connecticut.
Lisa earned a B.A. in English from Towson University and a M.L.A. in the History of Ideas Seminars at Johns Hopkins University.
Program Director: Thomas James
Teachers College, Columbia University 303-D Zankel