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Jacob Leos-Urbel (School of Politics and Economics) New faculty

Jacob Leos-Urbel    New faculty
School of Politics and Economics
PhD, New York University

Why did you choose to come to CGU? I had a positive impression of CGU from the moment I stepped on campus. I was impressed with the questions that students asked me during my job talk, the faculty were serious scholars doing work they cared about, and the campus was beautiful. I also was excited to help grow CGU’s program in public policy, which has a great future. 

What are your research interests? My research focuses on education and child and youth policy. I’m especially interested in how programs and policies for children outside of school can influence their educational success and well-being. I aim to analyze what public policy for children should look like, and figure out what works, with the goal of making sure all children have the opportunity to succeed. 
What is the best book you could give someone to get them interested in your field? A few come to mind: What Children Need by Jane Waldfogel, Class and Schools by Richard Rothstein, and Unequal Childhoods by Annette Lareau. Is it ok if I put in a plug for the transdiciplinary child and youth policy course that I will be teaching in fall 2013? 

Do you welcome or despair the widespread digitalization of books and media? I think it makes a lot of sense, but I still like having a hard copy.

What is your most common form of procrastination when trying to get work done? I get stuck checking e-mail and the Internet more than I should. When I have reading or grading to do I like to get away from my computer and work outside. It’s a good thing Claremont has so many nice outdoor spaces.
If you could choose a career outside academe, what would it be? It would probably be working on the same issues that I study now, just in a different role, doing policy analysis or evaluation for a government agency or nonprofit organization that serves young people.

What advice could you give grad students that you yourself didn’t learn until after you received your PhD? I have learned that teaching can be fulfilling but that it takes more time than you think to prepare and teach a course for the first time.


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