Support from the Spencer Foundation for Excellence in Research at GSE

The Graduate School of Education received a $1.1 million award from the Spencer Foundation to continue its urban education Research Training Grant (RTG) program for doctoral students. The renewed RTG program will provide fellowship support to doctoral students through 2007 and further the School's national reputation as a leader in urban education research. Penn's GSE is one of only 11 schools of education in the country to be awarded this prestigious grant.

Through the RTG program, Penn GSE doctoral students are exposed to a broader range of issues affecting urban education. Working closely with Penn faculty members as research apprentices, Spencer Scholars are mentored in in-depth and relevant education research. These doctoral candidates gain insights into education research from monthly urban education research seminars and share their own research findings with student colleagues from across the University when they host the School's annual student research symposium, "Exploring the Boundaries of Urban Research." The program is guided by a faculty steering committee, which pairs students with faculty mentors, provides input on seminar topics, and oversees program policy.

Founded at Penn GSE in 1997, this successful program has extended school-wide research in urban education and advanced the standards of excellence in doctoral student education. In studying urban education, doctoral students deal with the most critical problems facing educators today.

The Spencer Foundation also awarded GSE a $50,000 planning grant for a new post-doctoral advanced studies program. The school plans to bring together talented early-career scholars in urban education who will work with the school's established scholars to conceptualize and pursue their own research interests in urban education. The program will capitalize on the extraordinary strengths of GSE's research centers, promoting intergenerational work around integrative issues in education research.

Almanac, Vol. 46, No. 34, May 30, 2000

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