Won't Lose This Dream: How an Upstart Urban University Rewrote the Rules of a Broken System

Product Details
$27.99  $26.03
New Press
Publish Date
5.5 X 8.6 X 1.2 inches | 1.1 pounds

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About the Author

Andrew Gumbel is a British-born journalist, based in Los Angeles, who has won awards for his work as an investigative reporter, a political columnist, and a feature writer. He is a regular contributor to The Guardian and the author of Down for the Count and the co-editor (with David W. Orr, William S. Becker, and Bakari Kitwana) of Democracy Unchained (both from The New Press). He is also the author of Oklahoma City: What the Investigation Missed, and Why It Still Matters.


Praise for Won't Lose This Dream:

"Drawing on extensive on-the-ground reporting, Gumbel offers a richly detailed narrative. . . . Required reading for education reformers seeking to broaden community connections and benefit minority constituencies."
--Kirkus Reviews

"[Gumbel] poignantly profiles the minority, low-income, and first-generation college students who form the bulk of Georgia State's student body. . . . Accessible and inspirational, this enthusiastic account lays out a persuasive vision for reform. Educators and policy makers should consider it a must-read."
--Publishers Weekly

"Gumbel relies on clear analysis and rich anecdotes to explain how one school helped its students thrive. A superb work for anyone interested in higher education."
--Library Journal (starred review)

"The months spent researching the details of GSU's renaissance, especially the remarkable stories of its students, was an epiphany that comes through in Gumbel's narrative style--unsentimental but inspired and urgent."
--Red Canary Magazine

"Illuminating. . . . Gumbel tells the story with an eye to the consequences for individual students."
--Times Literary Supplement

"[A] powerful story of institutional transformation that reminds us of these truths: Leadership matters. Institutional change is possible. Lack of money does not mean lack of talent. When barriers are removed, students thrive. Every educational leader in need of inspiration should read this book!"
--Beverly Daniel Tatum, president emerita, Spelman College, and author of Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria? and Other Conversations About Race

"A must-read. . . . At a time when too many voices are questioning the value of higher education, this is a clarion call about the transformative power of college. Gumbel is a nimble storyteller, tackling the journey of Georgia State University, Tim Renick, and the student lives they have forever changed. This book should be required reading for anyone who cares about equity and the future of college education and our country."
--Eric Waldo, executive director, Reach Higher, Michelle Obama's education initiative

"Spreading Mark Becker's high-tech and high-touch college completion model developed at Georgia State will become crucial to graduating the citizens and workers we need."
--Anthony Carnevale, research professor and director of the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce, and co-author of The Merit Myth

"It's fitting that Won't Lose This Dream begins with the story of a student overcoming life-threatening obstacles on the path to a college degree. Gumbel's behind-the-scenes account of the rise of Georgia State University shows how Mark Becker, Tim Renick, and others made student success the university's top priority--doubling graduation rates for African American students and eliminating racial disparities as a result--despite the risk of inertia and some opposition to the approach. The charge for higher education leaders is clear: scale up the moral courage and smart management required for colleges and universities to serve as engines of upward mobility, particularly for students of color and students from low-income backgrounds, or else end up on the wrong side of history."
--Dr. John B. King Jr., tenth U.S. secretary of education, president and CEO, The Education Trust