“To be a lever for change, research is a practice in curiosity and risk-taking.”
Dr. Julie Zoellin Cramer is the founder and executive director of Wayfind Education.
As an education research consultant, Dr. Cramer is dedicated to the development of deeper learning environments to help all students find their place of impact in the world.
As a school design strategist, she works with integrated design firms, districts and schools to align learning and teaching goals with physical learning spaces.
Dr. Cramer is an experienced research administrator and was the founding Deputy Director for the Institute for Entrepreneurship in Education (IEE). As the senior research associate for the IEE’s Center for Education Policy and Law, her work focused on K-16 education policy as well as the role of innovative pedagogies in both new school development and school redesign. Launching the IEE’s Learning Space Design Project, she was involved in the design of e3 Civic High, a public charter school on the 6th and 7th floor of the new San Diego Central Library. The school has been nationally recognized for its co-location strategy and intentional alignment of pedagogy and learning spaces.
Dr. Cramer earned a PhD and MA in K-12 public/private school leadership from the School of Leadership and Education Sciences at the University of San Diego. Her dissertation focused on stakeholder empowerment in the K-12 system and was nominated for the William P. Foster Outstanding Dissertation Award. In 2012, she was named a David L. Clark National Graduate Research Scholar by the University Council for Educational Administration (UCEA) and the American Educational Research Association (AERA). While earning a B.S. in Finance from the Haas School of Business at Cal Berkeley, she earned the Charles N. White Award for excellence in finance.
Wayfind’s current research focus involves the alignment of place-conscious education strategies and learning space design. Case studies of culture-based and nature-based learning explore the ways in which student outcomes are enhanced through connection to local place. Part of the research journey includes further education at Windward Community College in Kaneohe, HI, through an academic subject certification in the instrumental traditions, language, song, and dance of Hawaiian music.
On a personal note, Julie is a member of San Diego Co-Harvest, an urban community system of micro-farms to make healthy food affordable and accessible to the food insecure. Her micro-farm includes vermiculture (worm farming), composting, as well as seed and cutting propagation.
Follow Julie on twitter: @jazcramer