A new organization has been established aimed at increasing the life chances of boys and men of color in four key areas: education, health, criminal justice, and economic opportunity. RISE (Research, Integration, Strategy and Evaluation) for Boys and Men of Color will seek to identify best practices and opportunities for new research that can create positive change in communities across the United States.
Some of the objectives of the new effort are:
- More effectively networking and convening researchers, evaluators, practitioners and community activists to share knowledge.
- Funding/sponsoring new research and evaluation projects that identify solutions to challenges faced by communities of color, especially boys and men of color.
- Building an easily accessible web-based portal to house research, tools and reports that support ongoing cross-sector dialogue and establish a virtual community of practice.
- Expanding the reach and dissemination of knowledge, best practices and policy recommendations that result from the effort with the field of researchers, policymakers, practitioners and community stakeholders in an effort to shift the delivery of supports to boys and men of color.
Shaun Harper, an associate professor in the Graduate School of Education and executive director of the Center for the Study of Race and Equity in Education at the University of Pennsylvania, will co-direct the project. “This collaborative project affords us a powerful opportunity to more effectively leverage our collective expertise to improve policies, practices and conditions for boys and men of color,” Dr. Harper said.
Professor Harper is editor-in-chief of the Routledge book series on Race and Racism in Higher Education. He is the author or editor of 11 books including Student Engagement in Higher Education: Theoretical Perspectives and Practical Approaches for Diverse Populations (Routledge, 2009, 2014) and Advancing Black Male Student Success From Preschool Through Ph.D. (Stylus Publishing, 2015).
Dr. Harper is a graduate of Albany State University in Georgia. He earned a master’s degree and a doctorate in higher education at Indiana University.