Academic Partnerships

Engage San Francisco collaborates with faculty, staff and students from all five colleges at USF, (Management, Nursing and Health Professions, Law, Education, and Arts and Sciences), and the Division of Student Life. For more information contact

Black Achievement Success and Engagement, (BASE)’s Black Living Learning Community 

ESF is affiliated with The Black Living Learning Community,  a component of USF’s Black Achievement Success and Engagement program. The Black Living Learning Community offers an opportunity for freshman and sophomore students to explore the rich history and intellectual and political traditions of Black Americans, and engage with the local Bay Area Black community. For more information contact

Changemakers: Capturing the stories of African American Leaders

The Inspiration mural, located on the walls of the Ella Hill Hutch Community Center, depict San Francisco African Americans who made a difference. Those represented on the wall include educators, community activists, politicians, sports figures, pastors, doctors, entertainers, artists, and parents. This mural highlights the key roles African Americans from all walks of life played in the development and betterment of Black life in San Francisco. Under the direction of Professors Stephanie Sears and David Holler, from 2015-2018 USF Undergraduate students have captured oral histories in written and oral narratives that will be published in book form in Spring 2019. As envisioned by community advocates Ms. Brenda Harris, Ms. Altheda Carrie and Ms. Lynnette White, the goal of this project is to preserve and celebrate the history and lives of Black San Francisco—Given the decreasing numbers of African Americans living in San Francisco and the increasing gentrification of historically African American communities, preserving this history is of critical importance. For more information contact

Health and Wellness 

Our Health and Wellness work is guided by community requests for partnership and a keen awareness of what assets USF can bring to bear on community health. Sometimes this work is the convening of partners, faculty and staff to connect over issue areas and develop new relationships and share resources; sometimes it is leveraging the resources of faculty, e.g. faculty and student participation in pop-up mobile clinics with the School of Nursing and Health Professions and School of Education and mindfulness-based stress reduction course taught by Rhonda Magee, USF Professor of Law.  To reach Nolizwe Nondabula, Associate Director of Programs and Partnerships, email and to see images from past events go to our Flickr page. 


Through multiple partnerships with SFUSD and community-based organizations we have grown an intentional year-round literacy support project for Western Addition children and their families. For more information on our literacy efforts, contact Associate Director for Literacy, Mary Murray Autry

Through multiple partnerships with SFUSD and community-based organizations we have grown an intentional year-round literacy support project for Western Addition children and their families (READ). This literacy project is collaborative by design;  it involves the San Francisco Unified School District and out of school time partners, and is driven by literacy education that is trauma informed and culturally responsive, with a focus on healing and well being.  Below are descriptions of the 3 literacy programs that work with Western Addition youth to support all children reading at grade level by third grade. 

Engage San Francisco partners with Dr. William L. Cobb Elementary School and Rosa Parks Elementary School in the Western Addition community to teach literacy throughout the curriculum to prekindergarten through grade 5 students. The literacy internship focuses on improving literacy skills and supporting elementary students to reach grade-level proficiency while increasing students’ interest in reading, stamina, and comprehension when reading independently, reducing traumatization, preparing future educators, and advancing equity in schools. Interns are undergraduate candidates in the Dual Degree in Teacher Preparation Program at the University of San Francisco. Interns spend no less than 4 hours per week assisting in an elementary classroom with guiding reading and writing workshops, 1:1 instruction, shared reading of picture and chapter books, reading comprehension, decoding, math and science literacy, assessments, and more. Interns commit to the literacy goals of the program and demonstrate the same professional behaviors expected of teachers. For more information or to apply, please email 

America Reads tutors work to increase literacy within the San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD) through working with kindergarten through fifth grade students on reading, writing, and speaking skills at Peabody and Rosa Parks K-5th elementary schools, and Magic Zone and Prince Hall Learning Center after school programs. All tutors in their first and second semester of employment with the America Reads program are enrolled in a one-credit course, which focuses on the development of their tutoring skills and capacities. Additionally, all tutors who have been tutoring with America Reads for more than two semesters participated in bi-monthly leadership meetings, facilitated by Engage San Francisco’s America Reads Graduate Assistant, Jamie Capetillo. For more information contact 

Launched in 2004, and housed in the USF School of Education under the leadership of Professor Helen Maniates, Director of the Masters in Teaching Reading Program, the Summer Reading Program is designed and implemented in partnership USF students and Community Based organization staff. From research on previous summer programs in 2016 and 2017, they have documented statistically significant increase in words read correctly per minute, reading fluency and reading comprehension on grade level reading passages for students in grades 1-5.  Students in grades 1-5 who attended 70% of the 2017 program showed a greater increase in motivation to read than the aggregate of all students enrolled.  The summer of 2018 we are implementing a Middle School component that includes regular field trips to USF. For Information contact