Inside Erikson | February 2021 Newsletter

February, 2021 – Welcome to February! This month, we’ll all likely experience an array of virtual celebrations, from the Superbowl to Valentine’s Day. We will also follow the rollout of COVID vaccinations closely and remain hopeful the number of cases, hospitalizations and especially death rates continue to decline in Illinois.

Throughout this month, we will also collectively commemorate Black History and look back at the legacy and contributions of Black Americans. In the words of Carter G. Woodson, pioneering author and journalist known as the ‘father of Black History,’ “We have a wonderful history behind us…and it is going to inspire us to greater achievements.”

At Erikson, we will continue our journey to become an anti-racist institution by offering new organization-wide staff trainings and conducting a presidential search with racial equity and social justice at the forefront. Leadership at Erikson remains steadfast in our mission of ensuring every child has the opportunity to realize their full potential. There is no better representation of this ideal than the work of our students, faculty, alumni, and policy fellows.

Speaking of students, we recently began the Spring 2021 semester, welcoming new students to the Erikson community who are eager to begin or continue their work focused on children and early education. As always, the health and safety of students, staff, and clients remains our top priority. With those considerations in mind, we plan to announce a decision by March 1, 2021 about whether options for in-person learning for the Summer term will be available.

Erikson Updates

Fussy Baby Network - LGBTQ+ group

LGBTQIA+ Parenting Group

Join Erikson’s Fussy Baby Network for a new LGBTQIA+ parent group for families with a child under the age of 1. They will be meeting on Saturdays from 10-11 a.m. Email [email protected] for more information.


Virtual 2020/2021 Commencement

The top priority in our decision-making when it comes to in-person events continues to be the health and safety of our students, faculty, staff, and their family members. With that, Erikson’s leadership has decided to honor the classes of 2020 and 2021 with a virtual commencement ceremony on Monday, May 10. More information will be shared about the event in the coming weeks.

Early Childhood Education Policy Win

The Illinois Legislative Black Caucus has secured approval of significant improvements in education equity, through passage of HB2170. We thank the Caucus, State Senator Kimberly A. Lightford, and State Representative Carol Ammons for their leadership on this measure, which — among many things — expresses support for the Early Childhood Funding Commission’s work toward greater adequacy and equity in resources for early care and education. The legislation also formalizes an important, kindergarten-readiness assessment.

Chicago Early Learning Program

Current Chicago early educators and aspiring early childhood professionals in Chicago are encouraged to apply for workforce scholarships through the Chicago Early Learning program. Scholarships will be awarded on a first-come basis. Apply here.

February 2021 Events

Free TEC Center Webinar

On February 18 from 4-5 p.m. CST, Erikson’s TEC Center will present a new professional development webinar, The 3 Rs: Reading, wRiting, and Remote Learning. This FREE workshop is developed specifically for preschool educators. Learn more here.

Master of Child Development Virtual Information Session

Join members of Erikson’s admission team and program faculty on February 23 from 5-6 p.m. CST as they share their stories and their passion for working with children, families, and communities. They look forward to answering your questions and sharing why Erikson is the best possible preparation for your chosen career. Register to attend here.

Virtual Film Screening

Save the date for a virtual film event on the evening of March 30. More details will be announced soon!

Erikson in the News

In the news

Erikson professor featured on WGN News

Erikson Associate Clinical Professor Dr. Pamela Epley appeared on WGN News to discuss how parents and educators can support children with developmental differences through remote learning. Watch the segment here.

Erikson student co-authors magazine article

Brooke Giesen, a student in Erikson’s early childhood education program (leadership and advocacy concentration) co-authored an article for Exchange Magazine on children and how we can re-imagine their care and education in a global pandemic.

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About Erikson

Erikson Institute Entry

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, click here 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.

Our Fussy Baby Network, which helps families struggling with their infants’ crying, sleeping, or feeding, has also pivoted to provide more of its services, like home visits, in a virtual environment.

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

Every gift made to Erikson supports work that has limitless influence, translating directly to innovative programs that empower early childhood professionals, provide services, and shape policies and practices — all helping children and families achieve their full potential. Make a gift to Erikson today.

More Ways To Connect

Learn more about Erikson’s Early Math Collaborative and TEC Center.