I am a deep believer in the transformative power of higher education. As faculty, researcher, and administrator, I have always worked to make my institutions more accountable, accessible, and adaptable to our changing world. I want my institutions to change society and be changed by society.

I currently work as Assistant Director of Student Development in the Graduate School at Brown University. Leading a series of programs for all of Brown’s PhD and MFA students, I help graduate students gain skills, awareness, and opportunities that increase their professional possibilities. I expand their capacity and imagination.

As a researcher with a PhD in music, I have managed large-scale research projects, such as the sustainability-focused Hyundai Research Collaborative at Rhode Island School of Design, where I brought together designers, artists, architects, biologists, technologists, and thought leaders in private industry and academia. I regularly write and publish work on popular music, listening, and disability justice. I am currently completing a monograph called Spectacular Listening, which is forthcoming from Oxford University Press.

I have been a teacher and mentor at many schools—Tufts University, Brown University, Northeastern University, Emory University, the University of Alabama, and Austin Independent School District. I enjoy helping students connect lived experiences with broader patterns, in order to advance perspectives, tools, and strategies for navigating complex realities. I also enjoy teaching for the ways that it allows me to learn.

byrd.mcdaniel [at] gmail.com