PhD. Education Innovation and Early Childhood, University of Colorado; EdS. Educational Administration, Leadership and Policy, University of Colorado; MA. Curriculum Development and Foundations of Education: Service-learning, University of Colorado; BA degrees include study in Art, Art History, Wildlife Biology and Management, and Criminal Justice
Deborah Young, single mother of 5 children, began her career life in criminal justice field as a juvenile probation officer with the Boulder County Sheriff’s Department. Understanding the challenges and limitations of the justice system, she moved into the educational system hoping to give a stronger voice to children and families. She trained with Dr. Caspari in Montessori’s work in the development of children and peace education. She also trained with Dr. Glenn Doman in brain development at the Philadelphia Institute for the Achievement of Human Potential. One of her continuing passions is research related to the impact of poverty on families, children, and single headed households. For the last twenty-eight years Dr. Young has set up programs to serve children and their families living in poverty in the US and abroad. Her efforts have provided education and community development opportunities for the empowerment of women, children and their families, on the local and international level. Dr. Young has founded eighteen schools during the past twenty-seven years in South and Central America, Africa, and Southeast Asia, as well as in the United States. Many of the schools incorporate critical pedagogy using service-learning and popular education as a foundation. She has also headed the construction of 6 potable water systems and 8 medical centers in South and Central America and Africa. She founded a nonprofit initiative called The Americas Association for the Care of Children (AACC) in 1997. AACC designs and directs formal and informal education and community development programs in rural villages as well as impoverished urban areas of Central America, Africa, and Southeast Asia. Dr. Young’s classes at Naropa University involve a commitment to social justice and opportunities for international travel through contemplative education and critical pedagogy. Dr. Young’s latest research is in Bhutan, where she is developing a Gross National Happiness Classroom Model with researchers from the Royal University of Bhutan.