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In Medias Res IMS: So HumanThread was founded to address the ’missing pieces of the puzzle’ in public education. MK: Yes, to me education is the key to upward mobility. It defines American democracy, liberty, and happiness for all. When the understanding of this is lost on a nation, then it will not provide opportunities for a quality education to all its children. I believe this is the single most injustice any nation could commit against its citizen, namely the children. As we say,’ children are our future’, and if we do not provide a meaningful education to all children then we fail as a nation. Let me also say that percentage in a population does not matter, for instance African-Americans represent about 13% of the population and are still classified as a minority. If we dismiss this great asset of human capital, we will most likely find ourselves in an economic disadvantage in the world economy soon or later. IMS: It is like a puzzle with a missing piece. The picture is not complete, and you cannot reap the full benefits of the beauty of the image. MK: Exactly, we have to see human resources as human capital that when it is missing, it effects the future potential of a nation as a whole. If someone is averse to the conversation about racism and classism, then let us address it from an economical perspective. By dismissing an entire group from the population, the nation creates a disadvantage for itself. IMS: A self-created disadvantage, I like that… MK: Yes, a disadvantage for the nation as a whole, not just the individual. The education system of a nation says everything about the health of a nation and its future. I feel in this country, it is very difficult to address these particular concerns about education. At this point, we are talking about public education, not college. With the public educational system, one has to conform to the curriculum (or the materials) you are institutionally allowed to teach. HumanThread through the afterschool setting can introduce tools for critical thinking to the student participants. We believe a higher level of thinking is how they must learn to view themselves. We want to introduce an idea that “self-knowledge” is the most important knowledge of all, for, from my perspective, it is the fundamental asset. For instance, take a concept of “self-identity” or “culture.” The knowledge we have about them is often nothing more than “categories” we all could belong to. It is a complex conversation but we believe it is a conversation we want the students to explore and come to their 47

Profile for Odyssey Project

In Medias Res: Vol. 2, Summer 2013  

The Odyssey Project's original publication featuring brand new fiction, poetry, reviews, profiles, interviews and more from Odyssey Project...

In Medias Res: Vol. 2, Summer 2013  

The Odyssey Project's original publication featuring brand new fiction, poetry, reviews, profiles, interviews and more from Odyssey Project...

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