Over the past two decades, Eric Toshalis has served public education in a variety of roles including middle and high school teacher, coach, mentor teacher, teacher educator, union president, community activist, curriculum writer, researcher, author, and consultant. Recognized as Teacher of the Year by his school district in Santa Barbara County in 1997 and awarded the Certificate of Distinction in Teaching by Harvard College in 2002, Eric has long focused on what it takes to educate adolescents and adults who bring a diversity of cultural, ethnic, gender, linguistic, racial, sexual, and socioeconomic insights. Eric received his B.A., teaching credential, and M.Ed. from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and a master’s degree from Harvard Divinity School. He completed his doctorate at the Harvard Graduate School of Education in 2007, and served as Assistant Professor of Secondary Education at CSU Channel Islands from 2007 to 2011. With Michael J. Nakkula, Eric coauthored Understanding Youth: Adolescent Development for Educators, which was published by Harvard Education Press in 2006. Thrilled to call Portland home, he enjoys spending time with his partner and their two cats, and hiking, trail-running, backpacking, snowboarding, and climbing in the mountains and canyons of the western states.
In this brief video, Toshalis discusses the paper “Motivation, Engagement, and Student Voice.” It is part of the larger “Students at the Center” project that advocates at the national level for placing students at the center of our educational decision making. The full paper and executive summary are available here.