A cornerstone of strong communities are strong schools, and a cornerstone of strong schools are educational leaders who have the passion, commitment, and skills needed to promote educational equity and excellence among diverse groups of students. These are the educators CGU selects for our Urban Leadership (UL) program.

The School of Educational Studies’ UL program is specifically designed for experienced educators who want to assume leadership positions in California’s school districts, county offices of education, and community colleges. Alumni of the program have used their CGU experience to propel themselves into careers as superintendents, chief academic officers, community college presidents, and elected officials.

Because the UL program’s cohorts are comprised of working educators, the urban leadership seminars are intensely relevant as your fellow students articulate the trends and phenomena they are experiencing. Your faculty shape the dialogue by helping the group understand these issues in terms of organizational and change theory, historical context, and research. Out of this synergistic exchange comes a deep conceptual understanding and applicable insights to address current and yet-to-be-identified issues. This design model develops true scholar-practitioners.

Leading to a PhD, the UL program prepares you to be a school leader that deeply engages in problems of practice with an adaptive dynamical mindset. This type of perspective-taking develops your knowledge of theoretical frameworks and research skills needed to promote educational justice. In turn, you will accelerate your ability to work with diverse and multiple stakeholders, and foster strength and excellence in our schools and communities.

Program Highlights
  • Earn a PhD instead of an EdD.
  • Benefit from coursework that is custom-designed to meet the needs of educators wanting to promote educational equity and excellence through leadership positions in California’s school districts, county offices of education, and community colleges.
  • Enjoy a cohort structure that facilitates the development of a lifelong network of educational change agents working throughout California.
  • Take advantage of courses that are offered at times to meet the schedules of working professionals. UL cohort classes are held on select weekends (Friday evenings and Saturdays. Discounted rates are available at a local hotel for those who want to stay in the area). You will also have access to additional flexible courses designed to meet the needs of UL students.

Program at a Glance

UNITS
72 units
(Up to 20 relevant units can be transferred in from an MA program)

COMPLETION TIME
4–6 years
Coursework is typically completed in 2-3 full academic years. Additional time is dedicated to completing program requirements, like the dissertation.

LOCATION
Claremont, CA | Los Angeles, CA

COURSES BEGIN
New cohorts start every two years in the fall. Cohorts are scheduled to start in Fall 2019 and Fall 2021.

DEGREE AWARDED
PhD in Education

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Featured Courses

EDUC 624UL
Leading Through Sensemaking

Develops the skills to make decisions that improve outcomes for predisposed-to-failure populations of students by examining concepts such as GLOCAL approaches that have succeeded in bringing about sustainable change, as well as alternate theories of change that are currently missing in our approach to school reform.

EDUC 625UL
Managing the Politics of Educational Organizations

Introduces current political events that affect funding, decision making, curricular requirements, mandates, and interest groups, focusing on leadership response abilities. Class will be led by experts in the field who have studied and engaged in the current political environment.

EDUC 626UL
Current Issues Facing California’s Educational Leaders

Examines literature and articles focused on issues facing school leaders in California. The Friday evening Socratic dialogues are led by educational leaders who are currently working in the field.

Faculty & Research

  • Frances Marie Gipson profile image

    Frances Marie Gipson

    Clinical Associate Professor of Education
    Director, Urban Leadership Program

    Research Interests

    Urban schooling, distributed leadership, social-emotional learning, culturally relevant and linguistically responsive education; systems theory, learning and achievement; talent and leadership development, K-20 school policy.

  • Carl Cohn profile image

    Carl Cohn

    Clinical Professor of Education
    Professor Emeritus

    Research Interests

    Education, Urban education, Education policy

  • Charles Kerchner profile image

    Charles Kerchner

    Senior Research Fellow
    Professor Emeritus

    Research Interests

    Institutional Change in Public Education

  • Tom Luschei profile image

    Tom Luschei

    Professor of Education

    Research Interests

    International and Comparative Education
    Economics of Education
    Teacher Quality and Teacher Policy
    Education Policy across the Americas
    Bilingual Education Policy and Practice

  • Susan J. Paik profile image

    Susan J. Paik

    Associate Professor of Education

    Research Interests

    Educational productivity; Learning and achievement; Talent and leadership development; Urban and international studies; Underserved students; Family-school-community partnerships; Research methods and evaluation

  • Mary Simpson Poplin profile image

    Mary Simpson Poplin

    Professor of Education

    Research Interests

    Education, Effective teachers, K–12 Education

  • DeLacy Ganley profile image

    DeLacy Ganley

    Dean, School of Educational Studies
    Professor of Education

    Research Interests

    Culturally relevant education; resiliency and achievement of marginalized populations; intersection of families, community, and school; language acquisition; social capital theory; systems theory

  • Gwen Garrison profile image

    Gwen Garrison

    Associate Professor of Education
    Director of Educational Evaluation and Data Analysis

    Research Interests

    Organizational effectiveness, diversity and inclusion

  • Deborah Faye Carter profile image

    Deborah Faye Carter

    Associate Professor of Higher Education

    Research Interests

    Education, Higher education, Race and gender in education, Mentoring

  • Dina C. Maramba profile image

    Dina C. Maramba

    Associate Professor of Education

    Research Interests

    Equity and diversity issues in higher education; Theory and practice in student affairs; College student development; Access and retention; First-generation college students; Immigrant experience

  • Eligio Martinez profile image

    Eligio Martinez

    Clinical Assistant Professor of Higher Education

    Research Interests

    College access, community colleges, boys and men of color

  • Linda Perkins profile image

    Linda Perkins

    Associate University Professor
    Director, Applied Women’s Studies

    Research Interests

    Women and African-American higher education

  • Jacob Adams profile image

    Jacob Adams

    Professor of Education

    Research Interests

    Education policy, finance, governance

  • David Drew profile image

    David Drew

    Professor of Education
    Joseph B. Platt Chair in the Management of Technology

    Research Interests

    STEM education, data science, model building, technology development and management

  • Torie Weiston-Serdan profile image

    Torie Weiston-Serdan

    Adjunct Professor
    Coordinator, Community Engaged Education & Social Change

    Research Interests

    Critical mentoring, critical youth work, culturally sustaining pedagogy, abolitionist teaching, Black feminism in education, youth-serving non-profits, learning and teaching

  • Anna K. Gonzalez profile image

    Anna K. Gonzalez

    Director, Student Affairs & Educational Justice

    Research Interests

    First generation students, immigrant students, equity and diversity, higher education governance, student affairs administration

Where You Can Find Our Alumni

Request information about the Urban Leadership program

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Heidi Martinez

Assistant Director of Admissions
T: 909-607-8982 (Direct)
T: 909-607-7811 (Central Admissions)
E: heidi.martinez2@cgu.edu

Aliana Guzman

Assistant Director of Admissions
T: 909-607-0769 (Direct)
T: 909-607-7811 (Central Admissions)
E: aliana.guzman@cgu.edu