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Keynote Speaker:

Imran Khan, CEO & Co-Founder of Embarc 


    Imran Khan
    Chief Executive Officer & Co-Founder


 Imran Khan's Session Video


Biography:  A graduate of Chicago Public Schools, Imran taught for five years at W.R. Harper High School in West Englewood. At Harper, he was English Department Chair, AVID Coordinator, and member of the school’s Instructional Leadership Team. In addition, he was a 2011 finalist for the Chicago Drive Award, a presenter at the Annual ASCD Conference (the world’s premier education development event), and a Gold Medal Winner for Highest Student Gains in Chicago’s Area 12 for three consecutive years.  

In 2010, Imran co-founded Embarc, and in 2013, he left the classroom to oversee Embarc’s growth as the organization’s leader. Embarc has now  expanded to serve over 800 students in 18 Chicago Public Schools. Imran is an Ashoka Fellow (2016), and in the cohort of the University of Chicago’s Civic Leadership Academy (2017). Imran serves as advisor to the Macarthur Foundation Chicago Commitment Committee, Workforce Funders Alliance and National Louis University. Imran regularly presents at conferences across the country, including Summit, Ashoka U, and ASU + GSV Summit.

Session Description:

Understanding that structural oppression has worked to diminish the intrinsic motivation and skills of students, Imran is re-invigorating it through experiential development. The goal is to tackle the isolation & segregation facilitated by the public school system, and to break down the walls that separate the classroom from the city. 

Our work is showing that this isolation is one of the key facts in the achievement gap and that experiences are fundamental to educational success for low income students. Embarc believes that experiences should not be relegated to those who can attend after school programs or extracurricular activities, but rather that they should simply be part of the educational lexicon and fundamental to our theory of education just like math, science, or reading is.