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Inaugural teacher diversity award to GSE alum Travis Bristol for his outstanding research and advocacy

December 8, 2015
Travis Bristol
Travis Bristol
The honor is part of a broader effort to improve understanding about why a diverse teaching force is essential for the nation's schools.

The American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education announced on Dec. 3 that Travis Bristol MA ’04, PhD [Teachers College], was chosen to receive the first-ever Teacher Diversity Award by one of its Topical Action Groups, which is dedicated to bringing more teachers of color into the profession.

Bristol, a research and policy fellow at the Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education, was selected for his outstanding scholarly work and advocacy for policies needed to enhance diversity in the nation's teaching force. He is a graduate of the Stanford Teacher Education Program and a former English teacher in the New York City public schools.

Bristol's dissertation, which was supported by a NAEd/Spencer Dissertation Fellowship, looked at the recruitment and retention of black male teachers and identified conditions that support their success in schools. After receiving his doctorate in 2013, he established a professional development program for male teachers of color while working in the Boston Teachers Residency Program; he recently wrote about that professional development program in an article in Phi Delta Kappan magazine. Earlier this year he co-authored a curriculum that supports teaching about the shooting in Ferguson, Missouri, and the events that followed. 

Bristol will deliver a lecture at the award ceremony in February during the AACTE's annual conference in Las Vegas. The event is organized by the Diversified Teacher Workforce Topical Action Group, which provides a forum for members of AACTE to advance teacher diversity and established the award to raise awareness about the issue. The group's mission includes articulating why teacher diversification is important; encouraging campuses to diversify their teaching candidate pools and provide them with strategies to do so; identifying ways to encourage candidates from underrepresented backgrounds to enter the teaching workforce; and identifying how the community can provide ongoing support for these teachers once they enter the workforce.