skastrul's picture

Leaders: What Comes First, Fear, Finance, or Faith?

I just attend a lunch hosted by Good City An amazing organization committed to strengthening our communities by developing strong non-profits. I had the pleasure of listening to Bob Doll, senior portfolio manager and chief equity strategist of Nuveen. Good City assembled some local leaders together to have lunch and it was truly food for thought. Doll talked about the United Kingdom’s recent exit from the EU and the impact it may have on the global financial markets.

skastrul's picture

Cranes of Peace: The Magic Behind the Fold


The i.c.stars curriculum can be divided into three buckets. One is the project-based learning environment, built on the foundation of our brilliant and resilient interns. They already have whole toolkit - we’re providing a context for them to unpack it. We do very little pre-teaching. It’s really all about experiencing and learning through meetings and deliverables set by their clients, and then post-teaching at the whiteboard and debrief sessions.

skastrul's picture

It’s National Chemistry Week!


The week of October 18th is National Chemistry Week, and as a former chemistry teacher, I’m excited about recognizing the fun and excitement that chemistry is all about.

From my experience, kids love science, especially chemistry. And what’s not to love? You get to see what happens when you mix things up and intentionally cause a reaction. At the end of the day, science is the study of truth, and kids are always asking why. It’s not until we become adults that we buy into the narrative that science is hard and not fun. But the best kept secret is that it’s really fun!

skastrul's picture

Leadership Starts by Surrendering To The Magic of What is To Become

I recently visited a school called Epic Academy. I really liked this school. It has good kids, great teachers and an awesome principal. What I really liked about it is that the expectations for their students are higher than you’ll find at most schools. Lowered expectations are one of the symptoms of a disease in our schools: faith loss. When you walk up to a school building, and it smells, and the walls are littered in graffiti, and not the beautiful kind, that is also a sign that the community has given up. That they don’t believe in the future. Because if we give up on education, we are giving up on the future.

Epic believes that these kids are the future and will go on to pursue great things. When you arrive on campus, you can clearly see the students’ pride in their school, that they take responsibility for its culture. I had two meetings at Epic. One was with five students, who were eligible for Ivy League schools, and I was there to help them with the decision to go away to school.

skastrul's picture

To Lead Out (Education)

One of the richest things about being an educator - and about the word, “education” - is the Latin root of these words, educere - to lead out. What’s always fascinated me as a teacher, educator and entrepreneur on the education stage is the question, “How are we leading our students out?”

Almost a year ago, as part of Chicago Ideas Week, I led a session called, “The End of School,” a very provocative talk about what that phrase means. My hypothesis was that the end of school does not mean the end of education. Instead, it means that we think about how to school people differently. The session included a group of very disruptive educators like Victor Saad from Experience Institute and the fantastic Co-Founder of Backyard Brains Greg Gage who fascinated us with tales of brilliant neuroscience experiments conducted on roaches. Everyone was enthralled.

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The Need For Revolutionaries in Education - Anthony G. James - Part I

Education in America and around the world seems to be the subject of many discussions. In Chicago education is politics and politicians are supposed to champion for the communities they serve.

skastrul's picture

Are we listening?

“A Quote from the Universe”

“A popular Government without popular information, or the means of acquiring it, is but a prologue to a farce or a tragedy, or perhaps both.” - James Madison

A Fresh Perspective on Education

Since receiving my undergraduate degree, I have been adamant that I would never go back to school. It’s not because I didn’t enjoy my time at Columbia. I did very much.

Nonetheless, even now, in my 30’s, I still have nightmares where I forget to study for a final or forget my locker combination.

While at Columbia, my education was focused on learning from professors who worked in the industry. Project based learning and internships were really big for me. I always look back on my time at Columbia as an opportunity-maker.

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A Measurable Impact

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