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The topic of the 18th Annual Timothy B. and Jane A. Burnett Seminar for Academic Achievement was “Thinking Beyond Normal: How to Live, Learn and Thrive Outside the Lines,” featuring Jonathan Mooney, renowned writer, neuro-diversity activist and author.

Watch the talk here.


Jonathan Mooney is a writer and learning activist who did not learn to read until he was 12 years old. He is a graduate of Brown University’s class of 2000 and holds an honors degree in English Literature. Jonathan has spent his entire professional career as a social entrepreneur developing organizations, programs, and initiatives to improve the lives of marginalized groups. In 1997, as an undergraduate at Brown University, Jonathan co-founded Project Eye-To-Eye, a non-profit advocacy organization for students with learning differences. As the founding president and Executive Director, Jonathan grew the organization from an undergraduate project conceived in his dorm room into a national organization, which currently has 38 chapters in 20 states working with over 10,000 parents, educators, and students. Jonathan has also worked extensively to create career and college pathways to move low-income youth and adults out of poverty creating the Los Angeles Energy pathway program, The Urban Teacher Fellowship, and the Promo Pathway—an initiative Vice President Al Gore called “a model for moving at-risk youth into the creative economy.”