About the Center Events


Center Events: Speaker Series

Dr. Miguel A. Guajardo (Texas State University-San Marcos)
Dr. Francisco Guajardo
(University of Texas Pan American)
Building Identity and Leadership through Teaching and Learning
December 1, 2006

This conversation will focus on the work of the Llano Grande Center in rural South Texas. The center engages public school youth through a curriculum focused on community based research, civic engagement, and social change. They will also share strategies for faculty to engage in research, teaching and service that are transformational and responsive to local community needs.

Francisco Guajardo is Assistant Professor in the Department of Educational Leadership in the College of Education at the University of Texas Pan American (UTPA), and also directs the nonprofit Llano Grande Center for Research and Development, a group dedicated to the development of public school teachers, administrators, and youth leaders. He previously taught for 12 years in a rural high school along the Texas Mexican border.

At UTPA, Francisco teaches courses on curriculum development, instructional strategies, and socio cultural contexts of education and has published on the impact of race and ethnicity on public schools, curriculum formation, and instructional leadership. His passions and academic interests in transnational issues, border development, and rural education have led him to participate in national and international work. He has been involved with a host of rural and international organizations and conferences to that end including the Center for Rural Strategies, World Indigenous People’s Conference, and is a Fellow with the Kellogg Foundation’s 2006-2011 national initiative, Rural People, Rural Policy.

For his public school teaching, Francisco received a “Heroes Among Us” award in November 2003 by People magazine; was named Southwest Region Teacher of the Year by Time Magazine for Kids in 2001; and was honored as finalist for National Teacher of the Year by Hispanic Magazine in 1998. His pedagogical practices have also been featured in Parade magazine, People, People en Espaņol, the NBC Nightly News, CNN, Southern Living, and numerous other media outlets.

Miguel A. Guajardo is an Assistant Professor in the Education and Community Leadership Program at Texas State University-San Marcos and co-founder of the Llano Grande Center for Research and Development. He also serves as the co-chairman of the board of directors of the Llano Grande Center.

His research interests include issues of community building, community youth development, organic leadership development, race and ethnicity, the change process, and university and community partnerships. He was a Fellow with the Kellogg International Leadership Program and the Salzburg Seminar.

Dr. Guajardo's work has been informed by the local ecology and the values of fairness, good work, and democracy. He has traveled to five continents and has engaged in conversation with indigenous leaders, teachers, and citizens on issues of education, development, citizenship, and identity.

For those interested in reading their work, we recommend “The Impact of Brown on the Brown of South Texas: A micropolitical perspective on the education of Mexican Americans in a South Texas community.” American Educational Research Journal. Fall 2004, 41(3), pp. 501-526.

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