A teacher with 20 years of experience in education, Laura Swartzbaugh’s entire career has focused on increasing opportunities to young people through education. Laura began her career in higher education, teaching in several different disciplines at the University of Minnesota, University of Michigan, and University of Illinois at Chicago. After moving to Chicago, Laura decided to focus on having a greater impact on adolescents by becoming a high school history and English teacher. As a founding faculty member of the Proviso Mathematics and Science Academy, Laura helped develop and manage an extensive research mentorship program that has partnered hundreds of underserved students with research mentors from institutions such as the University of Chicago Hospitals and Northwestern University’s School of Law. As her carer in education has developed, Laura has increasingly focused on the role of education and mentorship in increasing college access for underserved students.
Laura received her undergraduate degree from Carleton College, her Ph.D. from University of Minnesota, and her Master’s of Educational Leadership from RooseveltUniversity. Laura is an avid runner, having completed two Chicago Marathons. She has always found travel transformative, from her first trip to Italy as a 13-year old girl through her experience as a chaperone on Oak Park River Forest High School’s trip to Spain in the summer of 2012.