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Love named UGA Athletic Association Professor in Education

Lauren Leathers

July 30, 2020

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Bettina Love, a professor in the Mary Frances Early College of Education’s department of educational theory and practice, was named the Athletic Association Professor in Education by the UGA Athletic Association. The association has funded professorships since 2006 as a demonstration of its commitment to academics. Love's professorship is effective Aug. 1.

Headshot of Bettina Love

The professorship offers Love the resources to conduct research focused on the strengths and history of Black liberation, Black joy and more. Love is concerned with how educators working with parents and communities can build communal, civically engaged schools rooted in abolitionist teaching with the goal of intersectional social justice for equitable classrooms that love and affirm Black and Brown people.

“I am honored to be the athletic association professor,” she said. “I am happy that the work of anti-racism and abolition will be supported by my professorship at UGA.”

Earlier this month, Love launched a nonprofit organization called Abolitionist Teaching Network. The network’s mission is to develop and support educators fighting injustice in their schools and communities.

“The launch raised over $60,000 in two weeks, more than 18,000 people have viewed the welcome webinar and we are in the process of securing funding to become a national organization that is committed to protecting Black and Brown children,” she said.

Love's latest book, “We Want to Do More Than Survive: Abolitionist Teaching and the Pursuit of Educational Freedom,” draws on her life’s work of teaching and researching in urban schools and has sold more than 65,000 copies.

Additionally, Love was recently appointed to serve on the Old Fourth Ward Economic Security Task Force. As a member of the Task Force, Love will use her expertise in K-12 education to lend an educational perspective to the committee’s framework and solutions. The goal of the Task Force is to advance dialogue and tangible solutions toward guaranteed income and the Earned Income Tax Credit, the largest antipoverty program in the United States, while examining the future of workers.