Bryan Ripley Crandall
Bryan Ripley Crandall is the Director of the Connecticut Writing Project at Fairfield University where he holds a dual position in the Graduate School of Education and Allied Professions (GSEAP) and English Department in theCollege of Arts and Sciences. Crandall has 15+ years of urban education experience and has promoted youth to publish, perform, and educate others through the power of oral and written communication. He was a high school English teacher in Louisville, Kentucky, where he became a consultant for the National Writing Project, served on the state’s Writing Advisory Council, and was trained to be a Critical Friends Coach through the National School Reform Faculty. Crandall earned a B.A. in Literature from Binghamton University in 1994, a Masters in the Art of Teaching English at the University of Louisville in 1996, and a M.S. in Interdisciplinary Science through the Kentucky Institute for Environmental Education and Sustainable Development (KIESD) in 1998. He completed additional coursework as an English Speaking Union Fellow at Cambridge University, a Fulbright Memorial Scholar in Tokyo, Japan, and a Humana Fellow at the Bread Loaf School of English in Middlebury, Vermont, and Santa Fe, New Mexico. In 2007, he was offered doctoral fellowship at Syracuse University. His dissertation, “A Responsibility To Speak Out”: Perspectives On Writing From Black African-Born Male Youth With Limited and Interrupted Formal Education” was successfully defended in December 2011 and won a Doctoral Prize for Outstanding Graduate Research. Bryan taught high school English for over ten years at the J. Graham Brown School in Louisville, Kentucky, a k-12 public school that operates with “a mission of respect, self-directed learning, and a celebration of individuality.” According to Bryan, his students’ were “phenomenal mentors who taught (him) the importance of creativity and personal expression.” The Brown enrolls two students from each of the city's 26 zip codes and used its demographics as a bridge rather than a barrier to communication. As a teacher he became a consultant for the National Writing Project, served on the state’s Writing Advisory Council, and was trained as a Critical Friends Coach through the National School Reform Faculty. Bryan earned the Zora Neale Hurston outstanding teacher award from Zeta Phi Beta in 2004 and was named an exceptional teacher by the Muhammad Ali Center Center Council in 2006. Since 2001, Bryan has volunteered with relocated refugee communities from Sudan, Vietnam, Somalia, Liberia, Congo, Sudan, Bhutan, Senegal, Eritrea, Togo, and Guinea. Crandall publishes and presents on teaching writing to adolescent youth, 21st century literacies, adolescent literature, issues in urban education, and building communities of literacy practice in and out of school. Before arriving to Connecticut, Crandall celebrated students and teachers in Syracuse, New York through the efforts of WRITING OUR LIVES and EARLY COLLEGE HIGH SCHOOL. He is involved with many national organizations that support literacy research and community agencies in support of refugee families. Most recently, Crandall was appointed to the Board of Directors with Hoops 4 Hope, a non-profit organization that has supported youth development throughout southern Africa since 1995, and currently is working with them on a Literacy4Hope initiative. In Bryan’s spare time, he stays active in online communities, blogs, watches NCAA basketball, reads as much as he can, runs (which is "harder to do" as he "ages") and writes. He is extremely thankful for his family, including its extension to academic mentors and the young men and women he has been fortunate to meet through teaching and conducting research.