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Dean's Fund

In Fall 2015, Dean Dan Schwartz announced a pilot program to support student-led initiatives that promote scholarly camaraderie and exchange at the Graduate School of Education.

The intent is to leverage the creativity, agency, and insight of our students to catalyze their own learning opportunities with others. Students receive financial support to design and execute activities that impact the GSE broadly. Projects selected enhance the existing strengths of the GSE by offering programs and events that supplement our current academic and co-curricular offerings. As a result, the projects reflect new order thinking, innovation, and pragmatism that ultimately make the GSE a better place to learn and thrive.

2020-2021 Award Winners

Beyond Reform: Interdisciplinary Teachers for Abolition (BRITA)

Our student-led coalition calls on all teaching practitioners in the GSE who are committed to developing, implementing and reflecting on anti-racist teaching resources for students/colleagues that:

  1. Respond to the amplified need for nuanced understanding of racial issues in today's America; and either
  2. Engage students/colleagues on these issues using evidence-based, constructivist approaches suited to the demands of remote learning; or
  3. Contribute to school culture, practices and policies that promote racial equity/justice.

Our program comprises both coalition-led events and GSE-wide events organized by three subgroups (Latinx group, Asian/Pacific Islander group, and the Building Anti-Racist White Educators group).

Black and Brown Identity Collective (B²IC)

Graduate students rarely have intentional spaces where writing and identity are centered, discussed, and contested. If available, these spaces rarely advance our writing projects within an interdisciplinary community. The Black and Brown Identity Collective (B²IC) creates an intellectual community where students engage with the histories of Black, Indigenous and/or Latinx scholars to consider how they incorporate personal identities in their scholarship, while also allowing us to exercise our agency as scholars as we seek to do the same. Through B2IC, we  host writing sessions and colloquiums to prepare us for a career as public intellectuals, where writing for diverse audiences is integral.

Building an Anti-Racist GSE

In recognition of the lack of both anti-racist methodological training and introduction to anti-racist literature offered by GSE and CEPA, students have organized a group to:

  1. Explore anti-racist methodologies.
  2. Review literature on Critical Theory and other forms anti-racist theory.
  3. Actively work at promoting anti-racist practices within the GSE and CEPA.

We engage in conducting syllabus consultations with faculty, in order to inform faculty of the diversity of their current syllabi and provides services to help them incorporate more voices into their coursework, and disseminating resources (such a books or guides) for faculty and/or students to inform their own research practices and perspectives.

Critical Mathematics Teachers Collaborative (CMTC)

The Critical Math Teacher Collaborative, going into its fifth year, provides a space for educators to meet monthly to explore the intersection of theory and practice when it comes to critical pedagogy and social justice in mathematics learning. At each meeting the group begins by discussing a chosen reading that speaks to this intersection, and then moves into a workshop-style discussion of a lesson plan or idea contributed by one of the participants. Through this workshopping we attempt to apply the theory from the readings to the practice of planning and teaching in our own classrooms. This group sits at the intersection of theory and practice in that participants engage with readings that are at times deeply theoretical and then attempt to bring those ideas to life in their own lesson or unit plans with the support of their peers.

Danielle Greene, CoCo Massengale

Critical Studies of Blackness in Education (CSBE)

The group on Critical Studies of Blackness in Education (CSBE) is an intellectual community specifically dedicated to understanding and developing applied solutions to embedded anti-Blackness in education. Graduate student members work collectively to reimagine educational futures drawing on Black intellectual traditions and understandings in ways that protect and uplift Black students. Leaning on the scholarly lineage of Black Studies and Black feminist epistemology, CSBE is a transdisciplinary space that sponsors workshops, writing groups, speakers, and collaborative knowledge production that disrupts anti-Blackness at all levels of education.

Humanistic Inquiry & Research in Education (HIRE)

The Humanistic Inquiry and Research in Education (HIRE) Group is a student-led learning community invested in the role of humanities disciplines in educational research. HIRE creates a novel space to explore cross-disciplinary questions, such as: What do humanities’ theories and methodologies lend to the study of education? How can these modes of inquiry advance our understanding of education? How can and should we implement antiracist and feminist research practices in the humanities? We aim to broaden our skill-sets of critical reading, writing, and analysis in educational research through a series of events: reading group discussions, writing workshops, and speaking engagements with faculty. All GSE students are welcome!

Zach D'Angelo, Julie Huang, Derek Lu, César Moreno, Lucy Wenstrup


Our group, LGBT-QTs (where QTs stands for queer teachers), aspires to continue the work of past orgs in creating a safe and welcoming space for all those who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, intersex, asexual, pansexual, same gender-loving or ally. Though our group originates from the current STEP cohort, we aim to engage the broader GSE community in dialogue around issues related to gender and sexuality. Looking at the past recipients of CLF, it seems many LGBTQ+/SGL groups have come before us. Our group hopes to continue this pattern of contributing to the diversity of voices and perspectives within the GSE.

Kristin Keane, Karoline Trepper

The Literacy Collective

The Literacy Collective’s mission is to provide a forum for GSE graduate students currently conducting literacy-related research to engage with each other, faculty members, and the extant community on issues related to literacy. This forum will establish a network of seasoned and emerging scholars drawn together by shared interests to present and receive feedback on current literacy-related research projects during retreats aimed at workshopping current research; learn about and discuss research in the literacy field through quarterly literature forums aimed to grow knowledge of the landscape of noteworthy literacy scholarship; and, to meet and explore the scholarship of literacy experts both in and beyond Stanford in scholar panels aimed to foster knowledge of current areas and opportunities for literacy research.

Brian Chien

Mastermind Book Club

Mastermind Book Club is a peer community where like-minded individuals come together to focus on enhancing one's self. Each month members will choose a book focused on either mind, body, or soul. The user will summarize the key takeaways following a guided template and focus on applying the learnings to their life. At the end of each month, you will hear from others interested in the same topic via a video meeting. Through collaboration and teaching others, we aim to unlock one's true potential and build meaningful connections through shared interests.

Resilient 1st Gen (R1G)

Resilient 1st Gen (R1G) is an intentional community-building effort to connect all self-identified first-generation graduate students, staff, faculty and allies within the Graduate School of Education and with other first-generation communities across Stanford. Our group defines first-gen students as the embodiment of intergenerational dreams. Our main goals are to foster a strong sense of belonging for the first-gen community in the GSE, to promote academic collaboration efforts and scholarship that celebrate our unique challenges with a compassionate conscious awareness, and to lay the foundational resources for the first-gen students that will come after us.

Hannah D'Apice, Klint Kanopka

Student Workshops In Methods and Strategies (SWIMS)

Traditionally, the Student Workshops in Methods and Strategies (SWIMS) series has provided students with a much-needed space to learn about research methods and strategies from one another for which there may not be another space on campus. For example, there are currently limited opportunities within the Graduate School of Education to learn about logistic regression, neural networks, and text-as-data research methods, all topics from last year's workshops. These sessions have been extremely successful, attracting regular attendees and bolstering methodological expertise across the GSE.

Minju Choi, Faith Kwon, CoCo Massengale, Victoria Melgarejo, Kathryn Ribay

Women of Color Collective (WoCC)

The Women of Color Collective (WoCC) is a student-led initiative that promotes visibility, collaboration, and community for gender marginalized scholars of color. With events ranging from workshops and community building gatherings to invited guest speakers, the WoCC seeks to foster robust academic and collegial exchange. We provide a platform for students in different academic areas and at various stages in their program trajectories to learn, collaborate, and build relationships with each other and to further enhance opportunities for collaborative learning.