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K-12 and Community College Virtual Program

February 25, 2021

4:00-6:00pm via Zoom

0.5 CEUs / 5 PDCH


Join your peers to discuss teaching in uncertain times. UNC’s Dr. Dana Griffin, Associate Professor and the School of Education Dean’s Fellow for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion will discuss the importance of resilience. Participants can share their experiences and discuss positive ways to respond to setbacks during today’s challenging times. Experts Drs. Michael Nakkula and Andy Danilchick from UPenn’s Graduate School of Education and the Project for Mental Health and Optimal Development will discuss cultivating an uncertainty mindset and introduce the newly published Planning for Uncertainty educator’s guide. This timely resource aims to build educators’ and schools’ capacity to navigate the challenging mental health landscape of the COVID-19 era. This program is open to all educators.

Schedule | Speakers | Program Materials | Support


More info to come!

Thursday, February 25th
4:00 p.m. Welcome

Charlé LaMonica, Director, World View, UNC-Chapel Hill
Brent Williams, Superintendent, Lenoir County Public Schools
4:05 p.m. What Does it Mean to be Resilient?

Dana Griffin, Associate Professor and Dean’s Fellow for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, School of Education, UNC-Chapel Hill
4:35 p.m. Cultivating an Uncertainty Mindset in Uncertain Times

Andy Danilchick, Director, Project for Mental Health and Optimal Development, Graduate School of Education, University of Pennsylvania

Michael Nakkula, Professor of Practice (Applied Psychology) and Chair, Division of Human Development and Quantitative Methods, Graduate School of Education, University of Pennsylvania

5:35 p.m. Q & A Panel with Dana Griffin, Michael Nakkula and Andy Danilchick
6:00 p.m. Adjournment


Andy Danilchick is the co-founder and Director of Penn GSE’s Project for Mental Health and Optimal Development. He is a leadership consultant, researcher, and teacher educator. Andy is the founder and director of Action Research Group and a lecturer and part-time doctoral student at the University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Education. Andy was an English and social studies teacher for over 15 years, primarily in urban settings. Andy holds an M.A. in Educational Leadership from the University of Pennsylvania and a B.A. from Swarthmore College.  Andy’s research interests include optimal development, practitioner research, possibility mentoring, 360 assessment, collaborative inquiry, resonant leadership, and qualitative methods. 
Dana Griffin is an associate professor and is the Dean’s Fellow for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in the School of Education at UNC-Chapel Hill. She teaches in the school counseling, human development and family studies and applied developmental sciences and special education programs. She researches best practices for schools and school counselors for working with culturally diverse families and communities. Dana also has a strong commitment to social justice and advocacy and believes that school counselors are in crucial roles to pave the way for bridging the gap between families, schools and communities. In addition to her school-family-community partnerships and parent involvement research, she addresses cultural issues in her teaching and works with students on how to have courageous dialogues within the scope of their work.
Michael Nakkula is Professor of Practice (Applied Psychology) and Chair, Division of Human Development and Quantitative Methods at the University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Education. Michael’s teaching and research focus on the development of resilience and the promotion of possibility development among children and youth from low-income backgrounds. He is particularly interested in the integration of counseling, mentoring, and educational processes in urban schools to create contexts that allow students to thrive in school and during their transition to higher education and career opportunities. Michael works with many national and international organizations to develop applied research strategies that promote the study of developmental and educational initiatives in support of enhanced mental health and optimal youth development.


Brent Williams has been Superintendent of Lenoir County Public Schools since 2016 and was named the 2021 A. Craig Phillips North Carolina Superintendent of the Year. Mr. Williams is the rare school superintendent who has grown up professionally in the school district he’s come to lead. He started with the system in 1993 as an English teacher at North Lenoir High School. After nine years in the classroom, he became an assistant principal before becoming the district’s director of testing and accountability and then principal of three LCPS schools. He returned to the district office and was eventually named Superintendent. A native of Mount Olive and the son of educators, Mr. Williams earned undergraduate degrees from Barton College and Mount Olive College and a master of school administration degree and licensure certifications from East Carolina University. He is a candidate for a doctor of education degree in educational leadership from ECU. In addition to several leadership roles in his region, Mr. Williams is on the UNC World View Council of Advisors.

Program Materials

Instructions: To receive .5 CEU/5 PDCH credits you must attend the virtual program on February 25th and turn in a completed study guide. DOWNLOAD STUDY GUIDE HERE. Please return completed study guide by Friday, March 19th, 2021 to Nick Allen, World View Program Coordinator at NICKA@UNC.EDU.


The Project for Mental Health and Optimal Development, University of Pennsylvania, Graduate School of Education (2020). Planning for Uncertainty: An Educators Guide to Navigating the COVID-19 Era. Available here:

General support provided by:

Office of the Vice Provost for Global Affairs