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Who We Are   David Shields, Ph.D.

Melinda C. Bier, PhD
Principal Investigator
bierm@umsl.edu

Laura Harrison, LCSW, MPA
Project Director
youthempowerment@umsl.edu

Edie Barnard, MS
Consultant
youthempowerment@umsl.edu

Steve Sherblom, PhD
Associate
sherbloms@umsl.edu

David Shields, PhD
Associate
shieldsda@umsl.edu

Mark Hallett
Video Specialist
hallettmr@umsl.edu

Spring Schmidt
Doctoral Student
schmidtsp@umsl.edu

 

 

Dr. David Light Shields is an Affiliate Associate Professor in the Division of Teaching and Learning at the University of Missouri-St. Louis.

His teaching responsibilities include courses on the philosophy of education, educational psychology, and the historical, social, and legal foundations of education. He also serves as the faculty coordinator for Level I in the teacher education program..

Prior to coming to the University of Missouri in 2004, Shields (together with Brenda Bredemeier) was founder and co-director of the Mendelson Center for Sports, Character & Community at the University of Notre Dame. The mission of the Mendelson Center was to build character through sports by producing and delivering research-based educational programs and resources. The Center engaged in research, theory-building, publication, community and professional outreach programs, and a variety of service activities. At Notre Dame, Shields was also a faculty fellow with the Institute for Educational Initiatives. He also served on the Governor’s Task Force on Character Education during Indiana Governor Frank O’Bannon’s term of office.  

Born in Hollywood CA in 1950, David attended public schools in Inglewood CA. He earned his BA degree in religious studies and psychology from California Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks CA, and a Masters of Divinity degree from Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary in Berkeley CA. He earned his Ph.D. in Theology and Education from the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley CA.

He taught for eight years in the Peace and Conflict Studies Program at the University of California at Berkeley. He has also worked in campus ministry and has taught educational theory at several colleges, universities, and seminaries. For several years, he also taught sport sociology at John F. Kennedy University in Orinda CA.

In addition to publishing dozens of research articles and book chapters, he is the lead author of Character Development and Physical Activity (Human Kinetics), author of Growing Beyond Prejudices (Twenty-Third Publications), and editor of The Color of Hunger (Roman & Littlefield). In addition to academic publishing, he has written for the popular press, including a cover-story article in Psychology Today. He has presented at dozens of conferences, including numerous keynote addresses.

In addition to his academic positions, he was Associate Director in charge of educational programs at the American Nonsmokers’ Rights Foundation in Berkeley. In that role, he taught teens, teachers, and health professionals effective strategies for tobacco prevention, as well as political organizing and advocacy skills. He also served as a consultant for the California Department of Education.

Youth Empowerment in Action!
College of Education
University of Missouri - St. Louis
One University Blvd.
St. Louis, MO 63121 USA