Partnering with Purpose

Social Science Research Institute Research Scholar Ann Brewster is one of the collaborative’s fellows, earning support for her “Phail Wynn Jr. Program for Academically At-Risk Students.” Named after the late Phail Wynn Jr., former Duke Vice President for Durham and Regional Affairs and an early supporter of Brewster’s research, the program builds the meta-cognitive decision-making skills of adolescents in public schools who may be dealing with adversity.

Over six weeks, students work with Duke undergraduate volunteers, charting paths toward goals, such as earning a driver’s license and seeing how choices affect longer-term aspirations. With support from the collaborative, Brewster has expanded the program to schools in Person and Granville counties.

“I love that we have a diverse group doing this kind of work, and we’re not in silos,” Brewster said. “We can share what’s working and who we can connect with. We don’t have to reinvent the wheel.”

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