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Social-Emotional Learning & Civic Engagement (SEL-CE) Faculty Fellows Program

SEL Faculty Fellows

Tisch College of Civic Life at Tufts University works to infuse active citizenship and civic learning throughout the curriculum. To understand and advance the synergy of SEL and civic engagement, the Tisch College Initiative on Social-Emotional Learning and Civic Engagement (SEL-CE) was launched in January 2017. One key overarching goal of the Tisch SEL-CE initiative is to encourage and prepare Tufts faculty, across the university, to integrate social-emotional and civic learning dimensions into their teaching and research.

  • Are you seeking a supportive interdisciplinary learning community with Tufts faculty colleagues?
  • Do you want to explore how/why integrating social-emotional learning promotes equity and inclusive excellence in higher education classrooms, and how doing so can help you to reach and engage all students you teach and mentor?
  • Are you interested in the relationships between social-emotional skills, racial literacy & civic engagement?
  • Are you interested in learning how mindfulness practices can foster well-being, emotional resilience, and intellectual agility—for yourself, and in your work with students and colleagues?

If you answered yes to any or all of the above questions, we hope you will consider applying to participate in the (4th) Tisch SEL-CE Faculty Fellows cohort during the 2020-21 academic year. This cohort will include 15 Tufts faculty members from schools across the University. The program will begin with summer reading/reflection and then extend through the entire academic year, with monthly meetings (for 1 ½ to 2 hours). Dates for the year will be determined by late June, once the cohort is established. There will be a half-day retreat in mid-January. Note: Most fall meetings will likely be virtual via Zoom.   

Social-emotional skills are inextricably linked to academic learning and well-being. Research shows why and how these skills are vitally important to foster in K-12 schooling and higher education. People use social-emotional skills to recognize and manage emotions, handle conflict constructively, establish positive relationships guided by empathy, engage in perspective-taking, make responsible decisions, and handle challenging situations effectively. Attention to these skills is especially important for educational equity. According to the National Equity Project, “all learning is social and emotional, and all learning is mediated by relationships that sit in a sociopolitical, racialized context.” Social-emotional skills can also be valuable when people are civically engaged—addressing public problems together.

Each Tisch SEL-CE Faculty Fellow will receive a small stipend for full participation for the year, which will include but is not limited to: 1) actively participating in monthly cohort meetings (on Medford campus) and the January 2021 half-day retreat (which will occur just before the start of the Spring 2021 semester); 2) completing readings and reflective writing throughout the year, beginning this summer; 3) contributing to online discussions via the Tisch SEL-CE Canvas site; 4) working to revise at least one course syllabus; 5) participating in an evaluation of the program that also includes assessing how your learning in the SEL-CE Faculty Fellows program has influenced your pedagogy and curriculum.

If you are interested in being part of the Tisch SEL-CE Faculty Fellows 2020-21 cohort, please complete the short application form by Monday, June 22. For more information, please contact Deborah Donahue-Keegan (, Associate Director of the Tisch College SEL-CE Initiative.

This program is convened by the Tisch College SEL-CE Initiative in partnership with Tufts Center for the Enhancement of Learning and Teaching (CELT); it is co-facilitated by CELT and Tisch College staff.

2019-2020 SEL-CE Faculty Fellows

The previous Tisch SEL-CE Faculty Fellows cohort was composed of 14 Tufts faculty and staff members from schools across the University:

  • Amy Goldstein, Assistant Director, Experimental College
  • David Tybor, Assistant Professor, Public Health & Community Medicine
  • Ellise LaMotte, Director, Center for STEM Diversity, School of Engineering
  • Felicia Nutter, Assistant Professor, Cummings School, International Veterinary Medicine
  • Jennifer Stephen, Senior Associate Dean, Undergraduate Advising, School of Engineering 
  • Laura Corlin, Assistant Professor, Public Health & Community Medicine
  • Lizi Brown, Lecturer, SMFA
  • Luis Dorfmann, Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering
  • Monica Toft, Professor, Fletcher School
  • Najla Fiaturi, Assistant Professor, Medical Education
  • Neelakshi Hudda, Research Assistant Professor, Civil & Environmental Engineering
  • Patricia Smith, Lecturer, Romance Studies
  • Vesal Dini, Lecturer, Physics & Astronomy
  • Yu-Shan Lin, Associate Professor, Chemistry