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Penn Graduate School of Education


2020 Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Prize in Education Celebration

The 2020 McGraw Prize in Education winners Estela Bensimon, Michelene Chi, and Joseph Krajcik were honored on October 21, 2020 in a virtual celebration to applaud their exceptional contributions to the field of education. Joining to congratulate the winners and remark on the legacy and impact of the Prize over the years were: Amy Gutmann, President of the University of Pennsylvania; Pam Grossman, Dean of the University of Pennsylvania, Graduate School of Education; Michael Golden, Executive Director of Catalyst @ Penn GSE; and the McGraw family.


Together, Catalyst @ Penn GSE and the McGraw Prize are advancing innovation in education through a growing array of programming, including our ongoing webinar series featuring past Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Prize for Education winners. Other programming includes the nominations kick-off, McGraw Prize Winners panel, and the “How Innovations Flourish” symposium with past winners, esteemed Prize jurors, Penn GSE faculty, and more.

Registration Open Now

Webinar: How Will We Create an Education System Where Equity is the Rule?

April 8, 2021

Featuring 2018 McGraw Prize winner Reshma Saujani,Founder and CEO, Girls Who Code

Webinar: Catching the Dream for America’s Children of Color

September 15, 2021

Featuring 2008 McGraw Prize winner, Judith Griffin, Founder and President of Pathways to College.

Webinar: How Can Computer Agents Help Adults Learn?

December 2, 2021

Featuring 2018 McGraw Prize winner Arthur Graesser, Professor of Interdisciplinary Research, Department of Psychology and Institute for Intelligent Systems at the University of Memphis.

Save the Date

Symposium: How Innovations Flourish, presented by Catalyst @ Penn GSE and the McGraw Prize in Education

June 8-10, 2021

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The 2021 Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Prize in Education Celebration

November 10, 2021

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Learn from Past Prize Winners

View McGraw Prize programming on-demand.

Innovation for Equity: Meeting the Moment

2020 McGraw Prize winners - Estela Bensimon (Higher Education), Michelene Chi (Learning Science Research), Joseph Krajcik (Pre-K–12 Education)

For more than three decades, the McGraw Prize in Education has recognized outstanding individuals deeply committed to harnessing innovation in education to improve the lives of learners worldwide. View a panel discussion and Q&A with the 2020 McGraw Prize winners moderated by Penn GSE Dean Pam Grossman.

Engineering Equity in K–12 STEM Education

Dr. Christine Cunningham, Professor, Penn State University - 2017 McGraw Prize Winner

This session explores a set of research-based inclusive curricular design principles for the creation of engineering curricula. Using examples and research from preschool, elementary, and middle school, it explores how well designed curricula can develop children’s facility with, knowledge of, and interest in engineering and science.

Leveraging Data to Close the Higher Education Opportunity Gap

Tim Renick, Senior Vice President for Student Success, Georgia State University - 2018 McGraw Prize Winner

Can we eliminate equity gaps in college success rates? For the past decade, Georgia State University has been at the leading edge of demographic shifts in the southeast. While doubling the numbers of non-white and low-income students it enrolls, the university has simultaneously committed to use data to inform systematic institutional change. In the process, Georgia State has raised graduation rates by 62 percent and closed all achievement gaps based on race, ethnicity, and income-level. The university now awards more bachelor’s degrees to African Americans than any other non-profit college or university in the nation.

Remaking the Culture of College for Learning & Success

Sandy Shugart, President & CEO, Valencia College - 2017 McGraw Prize Winner

Our colleges and universities, especially the enormous institutions that have grown up over the last fifty years, were not designed to be places of deep learning. Their “deep architecture” and the cultures they fostered have valued many other competing interests—growth, reputation, brand, enrollment, stewardship—but generally, not student learning and success. Is it possible to reshape the culture and the deep architecture around these values, in spite of their underlying business models, labor models, politics, and competing interests?

How will the National Leap into Remote Learning Change the Trajectory of Education?

Julie Young, President and CEO of Florida Virtual School - 2011 McGraw Prize Winner

Learn how Julie Young led the nation in moving K–12 teaching and learning online as the founding President and CEO of Florida Virtual School. Julie then took virtual learning to a new level at ASU Prep, a tuition-free college preparatory school that serves students in grades K–12. Now that districts across the country are operating remotely under stay-at-home orders, hear what might happen next from one of the world’s leading authorities on virtual and online K–12 education.

School Restart & the Importance of Involving Parents

Ariela Rozman, CEO, The New Teacher Project - 2012 McGraw Prize Winner
Timothy Daly, President, The New Teacher Project - 2012 McGraw Prize Winner

As schools consider what it means to re-open, they will be faced with a multitude of challenges. How do they assess students and determine how much learning they have gained or lost? How do schools assign students to grades and classes? How do they create a plan to address the gaps that may have widened, and use the coming year to narrow them? How do they plan ahead for possible interruptions and re-starts to the 2020-21 school year due to COVID-19 outbreaks?