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Social Science Speaker Series: Teaching for Whose America?

Thursday, April 27 @ 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm

Mike Cooperman

Mike Cooperman

On Thursday, April 27, from 3:30 – 5 pm in the Hannon Library, room 305, Join Mike Copperman, senior instruction of English at the University of Oregon, as he talks about his memoir about his time as a Teach for America participant, “Teacher: Two Years in the Mississippi Delta” (2016, University of Mississippi Press). He is senior instructor in writing working with first-generation and at-risk students of color at the University of Oregon. He is a recipient of a U of O Faculty Excellence Award from the Center for Multicultural Academic Success. He earned his B.A. in English with Creative Writing from Stanford University, where he was selected as a Presidential Scholar. He is a graduate of South Eugene High School.

His book takes us to the intersection of colliding political and cultural worlds: worlds segregated by race and class, where cultural assumptions about childhood innocence are broken down, and where the plans of elite educational reformers can become well-intentioned absurdities. Copperman has taught writing to low-income, first-generation students of diverse backgrounds at the University of Oregon for the last decade. His prose has appeared in The Oxford American, The Sun, Creative Nonfiction, Salon, Gulf Coast, Guernica, Waxwing and Copper Nickel, among other magazines. Copperman has won awards and garnered fellowships from the Munster Literature Center, Breadloaf Writers’ Conference, Oregon Literary Arts and the Oregon Arts Commission.

Michael also helps run The Oregon Writers Collective, a group co-founded by Heather Ryan. Through readings and workshops, they foster a vibrant community to nurture working literary writers, particularly those who are beginning their careers, by connecting them with audiences and developing their craft. “I was an overachiever from a generation told I could “be the change I wanted to see.” Instead, I was changed by the kids, who I have carried with me, in their voices and stories, in their innocence and aspiration and merit. I set out to atone, and became an educator; those students made me who I am.”

Sponsored by the SOU Department of Sociology/Anthropology and the Division of Social Sciences.

For more information contact Dr. Echo Fields, Assoc. Prof./Sociology at fieldse@sou.edu or 541-552-8254

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Thursday, April 27
3:30 pm - 5:00 pm
Event Category:


Department of Social Sciences


Hannon Library Room 305
1250 Siskiyou Blvd
Ashland, OR 97520 United States
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