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CHICAGO, ILLINOIS, July 23, 2021 — The Erikson Institute Board of Trustees announced today that Mariana Souto-Manning, Ph.D., will serve as the graduate school’s fifth president starting on September 1, 2021. “Mariana is a visionary leader with a deep passion for early childhood and child development, and she brings extensive experience in higher education administration,” said Elenne Song, Chair of the Board of Trustees.
Souto-Manning is currently Professor of Early Childhood Education and Teacher Education at Teachers College, Columbia University. She serves as the Director of Early Childhood Education and the Director of Early Childhood Special Education Programs. She formerly served as the Director of the Doctoral Program in Curriculum and Teaching. She is Vice-President elect for the American Educational Research Association Division K (Teaching and Teacher Education). She also holds academic appointments abroad at the University of Iceland and King’s College London. Prior to her career in higher education, Souto-Manning was a teacher in public preschools in Brazil and the United States.
“Mariana’s passion, knowledge and expertise position her perfectly to lead Erikson’s current strategic plan of growth and collaboration, and integration of our work across graduate education, professional education, research, clinical and community services, school partnerships, policy and leadership, with the recognition that Erikson’s strength is in the whole of its endeavors,” said Song.
Souto-Manning has published 10 books, co-authored more than 75 peer-reviewed articles and received a number of distinguished research awards.
“We are particularly excited about Mariana’s research work to better understand the inequities and injustices in early childhood teaching and teacher education,” said Song. “Social justice and equity have been central to Erikson’s mission since our founding, and it is imperative that we have a president who can play an instrumental role in leading the important work towards equitable and inclusive education and child care systems for all children.”
“It is an incredible honor to serve as president of Erikson Institute, and I look forward to working with the entire Erikson family and community,” said Souto-Manning. “Erikson is poised to deliver an extraordinary, high-quality educational experience, make programs more accessible to diverse populations, expand the knowledge base, and influence systemic change. I envision a future where all children experience equity, inclusion, belonging, justice and opportunity.”
Souto-Manning is a native of Brazil. As a first-generation immigrant, she landed in Chicago upon arriving in the United States as an 18-year-old. She attended community college in Georgia before earning her bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Special Education, her master’s degree in Early Childhood Education, and her doctorate in Language Education from The University of Georgia. She is the mother of two teenage sons, and is an avid swimmer. She and her family look forward to exploring all that Chicago has to offer.
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Erikson Institute educates, inspires, and promotes leadership to serve the needs of children and families. We have the premier graduate school dedicated to child development. We provide direct services to our community’s children and families. We are leaders in influencing early childhood policy. We work tirelessly every day so that all children can achieve optimal educational, social, emotional, and physical well-being. At Erikson Institute, we know that investing in the early years of children will last a lifetime.
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