Faculty Member, Alumnus Chosen as 'Unsung Heroes'

Faculty Member, Alumnus Chosen as 'Unsung Heroes'

By Reid Oslin
Staff Writer

As far as Prof. Mary Walsh (LSOE) is concerned, Boston College's collaboration with public schools in the Allston-Brighton community does as much good for Boston College students as it does for area schoolchildren.

That is why Walsh has been at the forefront of such BC-led initiatives as the Gardner Extended Services School in Allston, which seeks to assist children by addressing their non-academic and family needs.

Her extensive efforts in local schools have earned Walsh a citation as an "Unsung Hero" by the Allston-Brighton Healthy Boston Coalition.

Walsh was honored by the coalition this past summer for having "demonstrated her commitment to our neighborhood through actively working to connect Boston College with the Allston-Brighton community."

In addition to recognizing Walsh, the Coalition recognized 2001 LSOE graduate Greg Kiley with an award for three years of tutoring and fundraising efforts at the Jackson Mann Community Center.

The director of the Boston College Center for Child, Family and Community Partnerships, Walsh said she has seen scores of Boston College students benefit each year from course-related learning experiences through the University's involvement with local public schools.

"It's a two-way street," she said. "It's amazing to see just how much [the schools] have done to develop our own research and practice."

Walsh said the University's partnership with local schools has grown to include a wide array of academic disciplines, including education, nursing, law, psychology, social work and business management. Eight doctoral and master's degree candidates and two undergraduates are involved in educational research on questions emerging from the project, Walsh said, while an additional 30 graduate students and 60 undergraduates are active in mentoring and tutoring programs.

"The road between the 'ivory tower' and the 'urban street' definitely runs two ways," Walsh said. "Our theory and research is only one part of the puzzle. This gives us a chance to develop new educational models where research and practice are combined."


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