The Best Lessons I Learned at Heller

June 03, 2020

Over the last 60 years, our dedicated faculty members have worked with thousands of students, serving not only as teachers in the classroom, but as mentors, research advisers and even friends. We asked alumni to share the best lessons they learned from their favorite professors at Heller — and we were thrilled with the wide range of responses received. From Heller’s first dean, Charles Schottland, to some of our current faculty members, like Social Impact MBA Program Director Carole Carlson, here are stories of some of Heller’s most beloved professors.

Gunnar Dybwad, Former Professor

Gunnar Dybwad

Kathy Byers, MSW’71: "My adviser was Gunnar Dybwad. He was just such a wonderful human being. He was warm, accepting, a good listener, and stood up for things that were right. His whole emphasis was on disabilities, and he got me interested in that field where previously I hadn’t been particularly engaged. In my practice, when I was a social worker and administrator, I worked for 10 years for an organization that worked with children with disabilities. I was glad to have his perspective. He was just a wonderful kind of rock to relate to."

Additional submissions:

Susan Pollack Cheloff, MMHS’90, PhD’00

"Gunnar Dybwad and I met when I was eighteen. This chance encounter led to many rich conversations and exchanges of ideas that inspired me to later return to Heller to be one of Gunnar’s last PhD students. While his lessons were many and his brilliance evident, he never basked in his accomplishments. Rather, he was most happy when he could savor the success of others. Gunnar opened his heart, home, and mind to those who crossed his path, and by example instilled the belief that all individuals, no matter their circumstance, had wisdom to share. His humility and gentle ways gave others the space to speak and his passion and perseverance opened doors for those sometimes forgotten. These values, as well as his love for his large extended family continue to be an inspiration."

Anita Hill, University Professor

Anita Hill

Nicole Rinier, MBA/MPP’21: "The chance to study with University Professor Anita Hill is the main reason I was drawn to Heller, and has far exceeded my expectations. Professor Hill not only champions social change but embodies a professorship that fosters and energizes that power necessary to influence policy discourse and help shape history. I continue to learn from her great wisdom and intellect, which she imparts with a grace and sense of humor integral to keep moving forward in what can be emotionally taxing and difficult work. I feel incredibly fortunate for her guidance, support, and the way in which she pushes and challenges my research to levels I feel I otherwise never would have reached."

Additional submissions:

Frank S. Li, MPP’19

"Professor Hill is a singular thinker and advocate who has been among the most transformative mentors in my life. Over the course of the program, I took a class and an independent study with her, and worked with her as an advisor for my capstone. Her insights consistently pushed me toward more incisive and thoughtful analysis in the course of our work together on racial justice and sexual harassment. She has been and continues to be endlessly supportive and incredibly warm—plus she has a wicked sense of humor! It is perhaps the great honor of my time at Brandeis to have learned with her."

Melissa Tabak, MA COEX’17

"She taught me not to be afraid to speak up and to believe in myself."

Bria Price, MPP'19

"Prof. Hill... taught me that there is value in my opinions and to speak truth to power."

Carole Carlson, Senior Lecturer and Director of the Social Impact MBA Program

Carole Carlson

James Miller, MBA/MPP’11: "Professor Carlson was the exact educator I was looking for in graduate school. Adept at her craft, proven in her field, Professor Carlson embodied success and strength. Her gravitas and openness made her human, while her hard-hitting questions and quandaries always left students wondering, ‘Have I really thought this through completely?’ My biggest takeaway from our time together was that ‘there is something to be learned in every success, but even more in every failure.’ Luckily, I've been blessed with more successes than failures, but I always take my time to evaluate the situations in their entirety."

Additional submissions:

Gabriel Ellis-Ferrara, MBA’14

"Carole changed the direction of my life. She taught me to think deeply about the customer and how you can help them... while keeping your own head above water. She taught me how to present with poise and class. Last (and perhaps most importantly) she taught me how to examine my own strengths and weaknesses to piece together the best future possible. I'll be forever grateful for Carole and all she's done for my classmates and me, past, present, and future."

Gabriela Corbera, MA SID/MBA'18

"My favorite professor at the Heller School is Carole Carlson. She taught me to embrace complexity, have foresight to the future, and celebrate mission driven organizations. During my time at Heller, Carole taught me to be tactful. Am grateful to Professor Carlson."

Jon Chilingerian, Professor and Director of the Executive MBA for Physicians Program

Jon Chilingerian

Abra Pollock, MBA’11: "My favorite was Jon Chilingerian, who taught leadership and organizational behavior. His course opened my mind to how one can build trust and inspire people’s confidence. To this day, I apply lessons from that class in my work as a management consultant for the state of Minnesota, helping stakeholder groups feel respected and designing processes to ensure their voices are heard in policies and programs that affect them. Also, he had a class rule — anyone whose cellphone went off during class had to buy us all champagne. Somebody’s cellphone only went off once during the semester — and it was his. So, yeah, he brought champagne for us on the last day of class!"

Additional submissions:

Scott Provost, MM’98

"During my time spent at Heller, I had many notable professors: James Callahan and Robert B. Reich to name a few. My favorite professor and one who continues to have a lasting impact on my career is Jon Chilingerian. I think his scholarly work and teaching embodies the Heller School's mission of using Knowledge to Advance Social Justice and his teaching takes into account multiple perspectives on management such as political science, psychology, and anthropology. I also learned a lot about management and the importance of cultivating and maintaining professional career relationships. He was a true ambassador of the management degree program while I was a student at Heller and his continuing education lectures on leadership successes and failures of Mt. Everest climbing expeditions are inspiring and his research on Data Envelopment Analysis is cutting-edge. This is why he remains my favorite Heller School professor."

Georgia Simpson, MMHS'90

"Jon Chilingerian!! He was my professor in the MMHS program, yes, way back when. He was engaging, energetic, set expectations high and was always willing to go the extra mile to ensure that students got the most out of their Heller graduate school experience. While at Heller, I wanted to create a specialized area of focus that was not offered as a concentration at that time, Healthcare Marketing. Dr. Chilingerian worked with me to create a comprehensive, well-rounded independent study that included course work at Boston University. He also worked with me one-on-one for an entire semester in two subject areas that were included in my specialization. I owe him a debt of gratitude because that experience launched me into being a very successful human service program and board development consultant. The best lesson learned at Heller — to speak up and be prepared to defend your position with facts!"

Ricardo Godoy, Professor of International Development

Ricardo Godoy

Gustavo Payan Luna, MA SID’05: "When I think of the Heller School and my experience, I think of Professor Godoy. His curiosity of the world and genuine interest in his students are the two biggest lessons I learned from him. He responded to an email I sent him when I was still a prospective student. Upon my arrival in Heller, he gave me a job opportunity to be an RA for one of his research projects, even when I had zero research experience. Even though econometrics was not my field, he guided me and always cared about me and my trajectory. He always had a word of encouragement and praise, even over a decade after I graduated."

Additional submissions:

Karla Rubio, SID’10

"My favorite professor was Prof. Godoy, because he really cares about connecting with students and helping them learn a difficult topic such as econometrics."

Lynnae Day, MA SID’11

"Ricardo Godoy taught me how much I love numbers—econometrics and advanced data analysis were my favorites! So many puzzles and important, real-life applications and implications. I appreciated his passion for the subject, his concern for his students, and his sense of humor. Thank you, Prof. Godoy!" 

Zhao Ma, MA SID’04

"Professor Ricardo Godoy, absolutely! He was, is and will always be my favorite professor! Without him I wouldn’t be who I am today. Without him, my husband, another Heller alum, wouldn’t be who he is today. Professor Godoy shaped our lives in such a profound way! Now both my husband and I are professors at Purdue. We try our best to teach, mentor and treat our students just like how Professor Godoy did to us. He is the absolute BEST!"

Tewuh Fomunyam, MS’12

"Ricardo Godoy all the way. He made numbers fun. He gave analytics a whole new face, enabling us to quantify and demonstrate the impacts of our development work in measurable form, using numbers. His courses were so practical and I will never forget the day we had an assignment to review an article published in a highly recognized peer reviewed journal. We literally picked apart the article and I felt like an expert. The notices of rejection of his articles submitted for publishing posted on his door are an encouragement to young researchers about the realities of the scientific world."

Sabina Grenaderova, MA SID’18

"Professor Godoy is by far the most relevant professor in the entire Heller SID program. He will tell you like it is; the skillset he teaches could not be more relevant in this divisive political environment where finding the evidence is the only best thing you can do no matter what career trajectory you are pursuing. I wish I recorded every lecture with Professor Godoy. Every word from him should be documented in the book ‘How to Live Your Life Right: Godoy Edition.’ The amount of wisdom you can learn from him will last you throughout years and across disciplines. And please don't forget to take the Survey Design course he teaches, I promise it will come in handy more than you think it will."

Win Ko Ko, MA SID'11

"I'd say the Heller School has so many outstanding professors. I vote for Prof. Ricardo Godoy and Prof. Eric Olson. I took natural resource management with Prof. Godoy. I took most of Prof. Olson's classes. I always appreciate their mentorship and valuable lectures. But combining with the lectures and mentorship of other outstanding Heller professors, one can understand the holistic perspective of what sustainable development and social justice really mean. All stimulates my strong interest to know more and to always strive hard to ensure sustainable development and to advance social justice. Thank you always professors. And P.S: I never forget seeing all those regret letters from journals posted on Prof. Godoy's office door. He is so relentless. I imagine this sight whenever I face tough challenges."

Mario Gutierrez, MA SID'06

"Professor Godoy, hands down. Without his support and mentorship I would not have accomplished what I did so far. He is truly the type of person you look up to when you are in a stage of your life when the academic and professional decisions you will make will mark the rest of your life. Ricardo Godoy is the best."

Zhanning Shao, MA SID'05

"Professor Godoy of course! He took me to Bolivia where I learned about the expensive costs of collecting data from the poorest communities, which is why we don’t have the most accurate data about poverty in the world."

Brenda Anderson, Senior Lecturer

Brenda Anderson

Sarah Winawer-Wetzel, MBA’09: "Before I even came to Heller, I heard about Brenda Anderson. When I met with then MBA Program Director Barry Friedman, I expressed concern that I might struggle a bit with accounting, as I hadn’t done much quantitative work in undergrad. ‘Well,’ he said in his Barry way, ‘our accounting professor wins a lot of teaching awards. ...’ Once I got to financial accounting with Brenda, it was pretty clear why. I’m grateful to her not only for her warmth and positive energy, but for restoring my faith that accounting was not some mysterious gibberish, but just another language that I was perfectly capable of learning and mastering."

Additional submissions:

Emily Brennan, MBA’13

"When I first started graduate school, I did not feel worthy of being there. I didn't feel smart enough, quick enough, or anything enough compared to my peers. Within two months of being there, my dad was diagnosed with Stage IV lung cancer, and he succumbed to his illness while I was on Thanksgiving break. When I started back at Heller in January 2012, there was one person in my life who gave me light: Brenda Anderson. She was my favorite professor at Heller, and she remains my favorite professor throughout all my years of schooling. As I was grieving, taking finals while juggling 16 credit hours and suffering through a myriad of mental illnesses, Brenda remained by my side... she encouraged me, challenged me, supported me and loved me all at once. She gave me extra time on tests, because (as it turned out) I had test anxiety, which wasn't diagnosed until I started grad school! And, I'll never forget how during my Managerial Accounting Final, she allowed me to verbally explain how to solve an equation when I didn't know how to write it. I've saved a voicemail from her wishing me a happy birthday and letting me know that I passed my final! Throughout the year, Brenda let me remained true to her ‘open door policy,’ eating lunch with me in her office, chatting with me about life, helping me laugh and listening to my poetry. Immediately following my TCP presentation, Brenda walked up to me, hugged me and told me how proud my dad would've been. I'll never forget that moment. I still email her occasionally, and every Christmas I write her a card or send her a gift to let her know how much I appreciate her. The cool thing is that Brenda wasn't just my North Star... she was also a beacon of light to many of my peers. I will never forget her kindness, but I'm trying to pay it forward."

David Gil, Professor Emeritus

David Gil

Abla Tsolu, MA SID’08: "David Gil was the first professor who allowed us to develop our own coursework for the semester. He gave us the freedom to think outside the box during every discussion so that everyone around the table had a voice. He even allowed us to grade ourselves at the end of the semester. Our classroom setup was even unconventional — it was a boardroom format!"

Additional submissions:

Sarah Winawer-Wetzel, MBA’09

"One of my favorite Heller professors was David Gil, who taught ‘Theories of Social Policy, Social Justice, and Social Change.’ Here was this tiny, petite man, whose voice never went above librarian level, and yet, he could stop us all in our tracks with his provocative statements and probing questions. His class was incredibly formative to my Heller education, and I still treasure all of the readings."

Ruth A. Brandwein, PhD’78

"David Gil was an inspiring teacher whose vision of equality and justice and determination to fight for it never faltered."

James Schulz, Professor Emeritus

James Schulz

Allan Borowski, PhD’80: "James H. Schulz is an exceptional human being, someone universally admired and respected. The source of this admiration and respect is his complete integrity, his internationally recognized research and scholarship in the field of gerontology (especially in the economics of aging), and his tremendous investment in mentoring his students. He was a dissertation supervisor extraordinaire who, while having very high expectations of his students, was also completely supportive of them. Those of us blessed to have had him as a dissertation supervisor found in Jim not only the attributes just mentioned but also a lifelong friend."

Marion Howard, MA SID'04, Professor Emerita

Marion Howard

Emily Pohl, MA SID’11: "Marion Howard’s planning and implementation course was the foundation of my development career. With the skills she taught, I went on to become an M&E technical adviser, where I trained thousands of people around the world in how to plan projects and evaluate if they were successful or not. That one course gave me a career, a love of logic and numbers in the midst of a messy humanitarian crisis, and the ability to train leaders in over 30 countries. Personally, Marion was a mentor and an encourager to me as I navigated the halls of a prestigious academic environment for the first time and then moved into my career."

Additional submissions:

Sarah (Soo) Laski, MS’14

"Professor Howard was my favorite professor at Heller because I learned a lot from each of her classes. I could tell she not only was passionate about her specific area of knowledge, but she was very effective in teaching the material. She was able to use her real life experiences and learnings in the classroom. She also left room for her students to pursue their own interests. Also, the way she taught the Planning and Implementation class, I learned the material outlined in the syllabus, and I gained skills in team work and collaboration that I know have made me a better employee and person. It has made me more thoughtful and to think about the larger impacts, both consequences and benefits of my actions and more compassionate. On another note, I am so grateful for the opportunity to get to know the people I met as part of my semester-long implementation class as I considered them some of my best friends from grad school."

Donald Shepard, Professor

Donald Shepard

Tapiwa Mupereki, MS’11: "Donald Shepard was really passionate about drilling down his highly quantitative courses: cost-effectiveness and advanced cost-effectiveness. He was quite excellent in relating theory to his work at the World Health Organization and the World Bank as well as his groundbreaking dengue vaccine work around 2010-11. Don perhaps emphasized the seriousness of his classes by coming fully dressed in a jacket and tie 100% of the time! His desire to produce stellar global citizens was evident in the way he selflessly devoted his time, expertise and compassion to us as students, even outside the classroom."

Additional submissions:

Anh Nguyen, MS'10

"Prof. Donald Shepard is absolutely excellent! His teaching of cost-effectiveness and cost benefit is very interesting and valuable in public health work."

Mari Fitzduff, Professor Emerita

Mari Fitzduff

Jide Olagunju, MA COEX’06: "Professor Fitzduff ensured a free flow of information beneficial to the academic and career progression of her students. She did not, however, just tell you where to find resources; she followed you there and backed you to the hilt. That is how I became an MIT Mellon Research Scholar, which enabled me to graduate in record time, in the spring of 2006. In class, Mari exposed us to the best. She gave of her best and brought in other faculty from anywhere and everywhere to ensure that the knowledge and the skills we needed to be avant-garde conflict managers and coexistence enablers were available to us, at our fingertips. I have gone on to advise and consult for several governments, corporations and international agencies, such as the World Bank and the United Nations. Mari did what I think a consummate teacher ought to do: She sowed herself in her students. I can only hope that we give her back what I think is the only payback: trigger paradigm shifts in our coexistence work communities, from negative to positive. She herself did it in Northern Ireland. She gave us all the tools we need to do it in the world."

Charles Schottland, First Dean of the Heller School

Charles Schottland

James A. Lomastro, PhD’76: "Charles Schottland was very helpful to me in terms of my working through the doctoral program on time. He was both supportive and critical. While I had some difficulties in the first semester, with his support I recovered relatively quickly and was able to get back on track and graduated in less than three years. The advice that he often gave us was more encouraging than didactic. He also encouraged us to ‘infiltrate’ into the system — government and corporate — and indicated that even small bureaucrats in the system could make a substantial difference in people’s lives.

I particularly remember graduation. My parents were both working-class, and looking forward to Social Security. It was with trepidation that I introduced them to Charlie, who had been Social Security administrator and on Eisenhower’s staff during World War II. Charlie was gracious, speaking to my father — a veteran — as an equal, both having had to work with refugees after World War II. His acknowledgment of my father’s service as a fellow soldier impressed me. I don't think that was a side that many people saw — his ability to relate to people at their level. Graduation became an occasion not only for celebrating my achievement but also for the affirmation of my father."

Norman Kurtz, Professor Emeritus

Norman Kurtz

Teresa Anderson, PhD’98: "Norman Kurtz is my favorite of the many fine professors who guided my learning. Norman’s book, ‘Statistical Analysis for the Social Sciences,’ is one I still use to teach basic data interpretation. Norman made his topic fun, useful and meaningful. ‘You want to know about scatter?’ he’d say. ‘It’s like cows in a thunderstorm.’ Norm brought the concepts home with a smile so we understood and retained them. He chaired my doctoral committee and held me to a high standard, for which I am very grateful. He helped me through many frustrating moments with more wise comments, such as, ‘Don’t worry, Teresa. Remember, it’s always darkest before it turns completely black.’ A grin always accompanied those ‘Norm-isms.’ I cherish them."

Additional submissions:

Susan Windham Bannister, PhD'77

"Norm Kurtz taught statistics in a fun and relevant way that made me love it. These quantitative skills have served me well over the years."

Tom Glynn, MSW'72, PhD'77, Former Adjunct Lecturer

Tom Glynn

Laurie Ansorge Ball, MMHS’83: "Tom introduced me to the world of public management — a career choice of which I was not even aware. After Heller, I spent almost 20 years working in Massachusetts state government (initially, at the Department of Public Welfare, where Tom was deputy commissioner), and I absolutely loved it. In addition, Tom once taught a résumé workshop and said, ‘If Peter Goldmark [then the executive director of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey] can present his résumé on one page, do you think you can?’ I never forgot that!"

Bonus submissions:

We received so many submissions that we couldn't include them all in the print magazine! Here are additional tributes to our wonderful professors, in alphabetical order by professor: 

James Arena-Derosa

Thomas Gallemore, MA SID’13: "James was the quintessential professor of why I chose Heller over the graduate schools I considered. He was an expert in his field who applied the latest, real-world demands and pain points facing a range of stakeholders and organizations across the international development space. Furthermore, his lessons were specifically catered towards the practical application of various concepts, which meant we, as students, were immediately ready to step in with hard skills to provide real substantiated value. As a growing professional, that’s what I sought and received, which is why my experience at Heller was so fulfilling."

Joel Cutcher-Gershenfeld

Viveka Prakash-Zawisza, MS/MBA’19: "I wanted to share that my favorite Heller professor was Joel Cutcher-Gershenfeld. He is an incredible teacher and human being in so many ways, so it's hard to single out one lesson that was the most impactful. Rather, what has left its mark on me is his general ethos and approach to the world, which is one of critical appraisal and thoughtful assessment through an ever-present lens of social justice. He was my advisor on my team consulting project in the MBA program, and his guidance through that process was invaluable and one that I hope to emulate in any future roles I have as an educator and mentor."

Joan Dassin

Farrukh Hadi, MA SID'16: "Prof. Joan Dassin and her deep insights and kind behavior. I'll always remember, love and respect her. "

Barry Friedman

Roberta Walsh, PhD’89, Heller Alumni Board of Advisors: "Upon reflection, I find that Barry Friedman stands out as most influential to my career. He enhanced my understanding of microeconomic theory in a way that emphasized its application to social policy issues. He accomplished this through innovative and challenging assignments, demonstrating how microeconomics serves as a key tool for analyzing controversial topics of the day. He also fostered a supportive learning environment, with phrases such as, ‘There are no right or wrong answers, only good and better answers.’ His approach found its way into my own teaching of public finance in MPA programs in later years. Thank you, Barry!"

Leonard Hausman

Tom Glynn, MSW'72, PhD'77: "My favorite professor was Leonard Hausman, former Maurice B. Hexter Professor of Social and Economic Policy. Hausman taught me to take prudent risks, and together with Dean Schottland, we launched the first master’s degree program at Heller in 1977."

Rob Hudson

Steve Morgan, PhD’79: "Rob Hudson, who said in l973, ‘democracy is a very fragile institution, and Germany having had it for 27 years is no guarantee it will prevail.’"

Ken Jones

Vince Mor, PhD’79: "Ken Jones was my dissertation chair, taught me advanced multi-variate statistics and time series analysis.  For the small group of students with a strong quantitative bent, Ken was the best.  The Deans didn't let him teach the required statistics courses, that was Norm Kurtz's responsibility, but Ken took the quants under his wing."

Wyatt Jones

James C. Gorman, MSW’73, PhD’78: "My recommendation for favorite professor is Wyatt Jones. The reason is that he would go to great lengths to support students in finishing their dissertation. That would range from making his computer account available for use in data analysis, to reminders about/requests for drafts. If a student needed help in writing he would virtually co-author the work."

Nancy Kane

Laurie Ansorge Ball, MMHS’83: "Nancy Kane taught cost accounting, which sounds unappealing but she was a great teacher and I use the principles that I learned in that class very often in my professional life."

Ravi Lakshmikanthan

Melissa Kizildemir Brigante, MA SID’07: "Ravi Lakshmikanthan is the best thing that can happen to any student. I became very ill shortly after starting Heller (which I just found out was a combination of Ehlers Danlos and another rare genetic disease I lived with for 39 years without knowing :)) and must admit all my profs were great support. But it was Ravi and his attitude that made it a very enjoyable process to get through anything and accomplish my best!"

Joe Morrissey

Leonard Marcus, PhD’83: "There were three important foundational points I got from Joe Morrissey and my time at Heller:

  1. How to teach. Joe was a role model in how he taught and organized our courses. And he had enormous interest in each of us and our studies.
  2. Think big, in terms of networks and inter-organizational relations, and how to make them better function.
  3. Social impact is the most important end goal for one’s work."

Eric Olson

Michelle Roose, MA SID’15: "Prof. Eric Olson! He taught me about the environment and why it's so important to protect it. I'm now trying to start a business making eco-friendly to-go food containers!"

Melisa Cook, MA SID’11: "My favorite professor was Prof. Olson. Prof ‘O’ is a brilliant presenter of climate change science. While taking his inaugural climate change seminar in 2009, I changed the focus on my MA SID program to sustainability communications. I am forever grateful for his clear, intelligent, and extremely engaging teaching style and content."

Farrukh Hadi, MA SID'16: "Prof. Eric Olson, who taught us complicated concepts with a simple language. I never forget his great sense of humor."

Rajesh Sampath

Shiqi Shen, MA SID’18: "Prof. Sampath is my favorite professor at Heller. He has taught me how (not) to deconstruct truth claims, even those ones I used to hold dear to. With his reason and passion, he demonstrates the power of intellectual humility and love of truth. Indeed, Prof Sampath has inspired me to take moral courage, and to envision new ways to live my life—for this, I am forever grateful." 

Morrison Moisa Saidu, MS’10, MA SID’15: "Raj Sampath and Larry Simon were phenomenal. Their connections in and beyond the walls of Heller stayed with me till date. There is more to SID than pedagogy and curriculum. I wish I could have followed these two great mentors through to the PhD path after my MA.”

Larry Simon

Morrison Moisa Saidu, MS’10, MA SID’15: "Raj Sampath and Larry Simon were phenomenal. Their connections in and beyond the walls of Heller stayed with me till date. There is more to SID than pedagogy and curriculum. I wish I could have followed these two great mentors through to the PhD path after my MA.”

Roland Warren

Leonard Marcus, PhD’83: "Roland Warren, who was still there when I attended, was my first encounter with a Heller prof. I had gotten married two days before I started Heller. On that first Heller day, we all went around the room and other people touted their remarkable pre-Heller experiences. I was still in shock given my life change, and so, when it was my turn, all I could say was ‘I just got married two days ago and I’m here on my honeymoon.’ Warren retort's was, ‘You’ll find that honeymoons at the Heller School are very short.’"

Ruth A. Brandwein, PhD’78: "Roland Warren, who taught me so much about community and who taught me that fighting against injustice is easier than trying to attain justice."

Victor Capoccia, PhD’78: "I was fortunate to have been at Heller during a peak period as a social policy institution (1974-78). It was the tail end of the Schottland era and maturing of his stable of bright stars: Robert Morris; Bob Perlman; Arnie Gurin, who was dean; and my all time favorite and I think luminary: Roland WarrenThere were others, Binstock, Jim Schultz, Gunnar and Rosemary, Norm Kurtz, Lenny, etc. But the stand out for me was Roland Warren; a giant sociologist, who conceptualized communities as dynamic entities, subject to improvement and change. He was a rigorous teacher, with high standards and a wry humor to match. He lent a stature to Heller from outside of the 'social welfare' world, and that enhanced that world. I think Roland Warren was a huge influence on lives of many colleagues. I would heartily endorse him as one of Heller's favorite professors."

Vince Mor, PhD’79: "Roland Warren was an extraordinary professor of social policy; he had been an architect of the Great Society programs and understood them from the perspective of institutional theory. He taught the required first year course in social policy and I still remember the social science and organizational theory he taught."

Cover of Heller Magazine Summer 2020, Celebrating Heller at 60

This story is from the summer 2020 issue of Heller Magazine

Also in the News

Then and Now: Heller Policy Impact

June 3, 2020

Since 1959, Heller's policy impact has grown in a variety of areas, including improving health policies, exposing labor inequities, providing HIV/AIDS expertise, revealing the effects of racial discrimination, and advancing the lives of people with disabilities.

Professor Emerita Donates Retirement Fund to Support Heller Students

June 3, 2020

Mari Fitzduff, professor emerita of the MA in Conflict Resolution and Coexistence (COEX) program, has created “The Fitzduff Family Fellowship,” a scholarship that will be awarded each year to an international COEX student from a war zone.

Then and Now: Heller by the Numbers

June 3, 2020

How Heller has changed over the last six decades, from gender makeup to number of academic programs.

News Archive →