Mara Welsh Mahmood

Mara Welsh Mahmood

Hi! I’m fortunate to have my dream job as the Executive Director of University-Community Links at the UC Berkeley School of Education. UC Links is an international network of university and community partners working together to develop after-school programs that connect K-12 young people from historically marginalized communities with university faculty and students in engaging learning activities focused on literacy, digital literacy and critical thinking and global citizenship. I’ve been involved with UC Links since 1996, when I was a graduate student at UC Riverside, teaching the UC Links undergraduate practicum course and serving as the site-coordinator for the UC Links program at a local elementary school. I’ve also worked as an educational consultant evaluating after-school programs; facilitating strategic planning projects; and developing grant proposals for local and statewide agencies and organizations.

I have the good fortune to be part of the Mind, Culture, & Activity / Cultural Praxis Editorial Collective where I continue to learn with and from this amazing community of scholars. I’ve studied and written about learning within and across multiple contexts including K-12, higher education, after-school, as well as out-of-school learning in São Paulo, Brazil and most recently published a book exploring this work, A Cultural Historical Approach to Social Displacement and University-Community Engagement: Emerging Research and Opportunities (2021), with co-authors Charles Underwood and Olga Vásquez.

I enjoy going to the beach, spending time with family and friends, and walking with my dog. I also tend to a flock of plastic pink flamingos and have been known to “flock” people in the dead of night with other mothers, planting the flamingos in people’s yards for special occasions.

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