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Inside Erikson | December 2021 Newsletter

December 2021 – Welcome to the December edition of the Inside Erikson newsletter!

It is finally here! As we enter the last month of the year, we must acknowledge that 2021 has come with a lot of change, and as a community we were able to embrace all of it. As we end this year reflecting on what we are grateful for, our flexibility and the ability to “roll with the punches” are at the top of that list.

With the recent re-opening of our Center for Children and Families (CCF) in Little Village, we expand our reach by offering bilingual services and now accepting Medicaid insurance. We hope that with the expansion of insurances that are accepted, that we will be able to provide services to children and families that were not able to receive them before. Erikson hosted a media day to announce the re-opening of the clinic in partnership with Alderman Michael Rodriguez, 22nd Ward, and Katya Nuques, the Executive Director of Enlace. President Mariana Souto-Manning highlighted the great work by CCF. The enthusiasm was evident in news coverage from several media outlets including ABC, CBS, NBC, Telemundo, Univision, and WBEZ.

This week, we will be honoring Erikson’s 55 years of service with a virtual annual fundraising event on December 9. The event will feature a preview of Erikson’s newest podcast, coming out in 2022, and a discussion/interview with Barbara Taylor Bowman led by WBEZ’s Natalie Moore. We hope you can join us!

Erikson Updates

Policy and Leadership Relaunches Podcast, “Get On The Early Childhood Bus”

Erikson’s Penny Smith and Senator Cristina Pacione-Zayas from our Policy and Leadership team released a new episode to their “Get on the Early Childhood Bus” podcast. The podcast dives into trending headlines and hot topics to find the baby in every situation. Listen to the latest episode here.

Erikson’s 55th Anniversary Celebration and Podcast Launch

On December 9, we will host our annual fundraiser as a virtual celebration of Erikson’s 55th anniversary and the launch of our new podcast. This virtual event will bring together our podcast host, Natalie Moore, with Erikson co-founder Barbara Taylor Bowman and President Mariana Souto-Manning. We also have reflections from Erikson graduates Virginia Bobbins and Cari Sacks. We will welcome guests from across the nation to celebrate this ground-breaking podcast in early childhood. This is a FREE event for everyone who attends. Visit for more information.

Erikson in the News

Erikson Professor and Senior Academic Advisor, Jie-Qi Chen, was recently mentioned in this Education Week article by Larry Ferlazzo on the importance of small group instruction. This is part three of a four-part series. Read this piece and more here.

The December 2 re-opening of our Center for Children and Families – Little Village was featured on several news outlets. The links to those stories are below:

Illinois News Today

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About Erikson

Graduate Education

Recognized for our groundbreaking work in the field of early childhood, Erikson specializes in preparing child development, education, and social work leaders to improve the lives of young children, families, and their communities. For more information on our degree and certificate programs, visit our website or email our admissions team.

Clinical and Community Services

As we adapt to these unexpected and challenging times due to COVID-19, Erikson’s Center for Children and Families is offering virtual mental health services to parents, caregivers, and children, as well as crisis counseling and consultation to support first responders and early childcare providers and teachers. Services can be provided in both English and Spanish, and are available to families regardless of their ability to pay.

We have also re-opened our River North clinic for services that require in-person assessments, including Early Intervention Medical and Neurodevelopmental Diagnostic Evaluations.

Policy and Leadership

Erikson’s Policy and Leadership department engages leaders in government, business, and nonprofit sectors to inform effective policies that benefit children and families. They offer unique programming that equips decision-makers and influencers with the resources, skills, and deep knowledge about early childhood development that will support their efforts to make lasting change. Learn more about our Policy and Leadership.

Give to Erikson

The first 1,100 days of life set the stage for a child’s long-term physical and emotional health, socioeconomic trajectory, life expectancy, happiness, and well-being. Can we count on you to make a gift to strengthen our ability to serve children and families, as well as our students, faculty, and staff, during this time? Your support for Erikson prepares the heroes in young children’s lives—teachers, social workers, civic leaders, parents and caregivers—to get them safely through this crisis so they can soar into promising futures. Please donate here.

More ways to connect

Learn more about Erikson’s Early Math Collaborative and email our admissions team.

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