Aukeem Ballard

Department and Institution: 
Education, UC Berkeley

Aukeem Ballard is a former secondary public-school educator, organizer, and school leader whose pedagogy and practices remain grounded in critical love.  Aukeem is currently a PhD student in the Berkeley School of Education with a Designated Emphasis in Critical Theory. Aukeem's current research focuses on the gendered and racialized educational experiences, conditions, and practices that constitute (and are shaped by) phenomena such as love, hope, healing, and courage as mediated through, thereby informing, often oppressive and dehumanizing spaces.  Aukeem seeks to highlight and examine under-investigated, yet consequential experiences of personhood and subject-relations in hopes of supporting K-12 schooling to become spaces where historically marginalized and resilient peoples can thrive by listening to and lifting up the voices of youth. Aukeem works to reimagine schooling as humanizing learning spaces for historically dehumanized peoples.  Aukeem received a BA in Rhetoric and Media studies from Lewis & Clark College as well as a M.A.T. in secondary Social Studies from Lewis & Clark College.  Aukeem finds joy and restoration in reading and writing poetry, exploring new activities, reading, cooking, dancing, and supporting non-profits through various acts of service.