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Anthony Fosu '24 Reflects on Human-Centered Design

Jan 05, 2023   |   Dartmouth Admissions

Anthony Fosu '24 (he/him/his)

Hometown: Keyport, NJ

Major: Government; Minors: Public Policy & Human-Centered Design

Photo by Don Hamerman

"I see education as something that not only empowers and uplifts but inspires," says Anthony Fosu '24. "Dartmouth's mission is to raise student leaders who are the best in their fields and are really passionate about their work, then send them out into the world to help solve the issues our communities are facing. For me, that comes in the form of addressing inequalities in education." 

Anthony's mission is informed by his identities as a first-generation college student and public high school graduate as well as his experience with an internship in the Family and Criminal Court division of the New Jersey Courts. There, he saw firsthand how a conviction for a nonviolent offense can severely limit a person's access to jobs, loans, and quality education. "The work I'm interested in is rooted in the concept of restorative justice," he says. "For a multitude of reasons, your zip code can determine the quality of your school. I don't want students who come from disadvantaged backgrounds to see college as another challenge they have to surmount, but as a gateway to any opportunity they could want."

Through the Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and Social Sciences' First-Year Fellows program, which places Dartmouth students with alumni mentors in policy internships in Washington, DC, Anthony spent his first-year summer interning at the US Department of Education under the guidance of Lauren Kennedy '02. He learned how the federal government distributed relief aid to students and colleges during the pandemic and helped determine organizations' aid eligibility. "I saw firsthand how the federal government and private institutions like Dartmouth work together to address crises such as the pandemic. I also saw in action many of the theories and concepts I was learning in my 'Introduction to Public Policy' class," he says. 

Anthony's view of educational policy was further transformed when he took ENGS 12: Design Thinking with Assistant Professor of Engineering Rafe Steinhauer, whose research interests include education design. "I fell in love with design thinking because the whole premise behind it is that, through design, we can create the world we want to see," Anthony says. He believes that a human-centered design minor challenges students to solve problems by examining community needs. "The government department gave me the foundation to understand why political problems exist. Design thinking gives me the tools to help solve them."

After graduation, Anthony plans to attend graduate school and one day become a lawyer or education advocate. "I can see myself as a litigator within the Department of Education advocating for different federal statutes or regulations. I see myself helping folks who have been incarcerated by ensuring that they have access to quality education. As I look toward the future, I want to have a widespread social impact."

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