Charles H.F. Davis III

Assistant Professor

Dr. Charles H.F. Davis III is an Assistant Professor in the Center for the Study of Higher and Postsecondary Education. His current research and teaching broadly focus on issues race and racism, systems of oppression, and structures of domination in U.S. higher education and its social contexts. In particular, his current ethnographic work uses traditional and visual methods to explore how Black campus and community activists build and exercise political power to drive social and institutional change. He has received funding support from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Lumina Foundation, Spencer Foundation, the National Academy of Education, and the National Center for Institutional Diversity.

In addition to publishing in top peer-reviewed academic journals, Dr. Davis recently co-edited Student Activism, Politics, and Campus Climate in Higher Education as well as hosted and produced a long-form documentary about the structural barriers facing Black youth in education and innovative solutions to support their success. Dr. Davis’ work has been featured by leading national news outlets including the Los Angeles Times and The Chronicle of Higher Education as well as cited in Amicus Curiae briefs in the Fisher v. University of Texas and the SFFA v. Harvard Supreme Court cases. Dr. Davis has been recognized by Diverse Issues of Higher Education as 2020 Emerging Scholar and was recently awarded the prestigious 2021 National Academy of Education/Spencer Postdoctoral Fellowship.

Prior to joining the U-M faculty, Dr. Davis was an Assistant Professor of Clinical Education in the Rossier School of Education at the University of Southern California helped launch two national research centers focused on advancing racial equity in education. While at USC, Dr. Davis was recognized as Faculty Member of the Year by the USC Rossier Postsecondary Administration and Student Affairs Network and Outstanding Faculty Member by the USC Rossier Student Organization.

Dr. Davis earned his doctorate in Higher Education from the University of Arizona and holds master’s degrees from the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education and Florida State University.

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