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March 30: Educator talks about helping underprivileged youth

By Dustin VandeHoef, College of Education intern

Keith-WheelerPULLMAN, Wash. – Educator, motivational speaker and alumnus Keith B. Wheeler will give a free, public talk about his experience growing up in a Seattle gang neighborhood and his work in academically challenged schools at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 30, in the CUB auditorium at Washington State University.

The author of “H.O.P.E.: Helping Others Pursue Excellence,” Wheeler has been assistant principal in the Kent and Federal Way, Wash., school districts and principal in the El Monte Union High School District in Southern California. He focused on helping at-risk kids and pushed for academic achievement in math and writing.

“Keith has worked with underprivileged youth his whole life,” said Kelly Ward, a department chair in the WSU College of Education. “He’s bringing a valuable perspective to WSU.”

He is working with community leaders and state officials in California to improve adult education.

His talk is part of the Suwyn Family Lecture Series, an annual presentation at WSU by a noted leader in education that was endowed by alumni Mark and Patricia Suwyn.

Learn more about Wheeler at



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