Since its inception at New York University in 2010, The Hip-Hop Education Center has remained committed to empowering and celebrating the Hip-Hop community; cultivating the field of Hip-Hop education through empirical analysis, documentation, and advocating for human rights and education innovation. Together with a community of artists, media makers, educators, students, professionals, and aficionados, we are transforming our world as a collective unit by participating in studies, shaping it by reimaging and interpreting new worlds, molding it by problem-solving and critical discussions. The following is a list of initiatives that support the mission and vision of the Hip-Hop Education Center:


The Hip-Hop Education Center (HHEC) has been at the forefront of generating academic research and evaluation reports to define and map the fledgling field of Hip-Hop Education. The HHEC has published three field reports, presented successful hip-hop-based education models at teaching and learning conferences. We convene with seasoned practitioners to guide our research, determine best practices, develop goals and standards, and assess the needs of the field. We began our research with a national scan of hip-hop programs in collaboration with New York University’s  Metropolitan Center for Research on Equity and the Transformation of Schools. Since then we have collaborated with dozens of institutions and organizations including, Teachers College Institute for Urban and Minority Education, Stanford University, Nathan Cummings Foundation, and the Annie E. Casey Foundation.


It is critical for the development of the movement for Hip-Hop scholars, pioneers, business and community leaders, administrators, social workers, and K-12 teachers to exchange information, assess research data and curricular models, coalition-build, and collectively engage in a political and economic strategy to formalize the field. We have presented four international Hip-Hop Education Think Tanks in partnership with the New York Univesity Metropolitan Center for Research on Equity and the Transformation of Schools, Columbia University Institute for Urban and Minority Education. The Schomburg Center, and Stanford University’s Institute for Diversity Arts.

Through our professional development services and sponsored events, we share information, resources, and tools with educators, teaching artists, cultural leaders, scholars, and pre-service teachers. Our partners vary from NYU Metro Center’s Technical Assistance Center on Disproportionality Conference to American Education Research Association.

The HHEC has been leading the charge to make the Hip-Hop archiving and preservation field more transparent and accountable to the community through educational opportunities, dialogue, and collaboration.


We cultivate problem solvers, education innovators, and social entrepreneurs to develop the next generation of leaders and hip-hop education ideas. Through our Fellows and Scholars Program, we have supported over 100 projects and initiatives.  Our visiting scholar program supports international research, scholarship, and community programming projects. Visiting scholars have joined us from Japan, South Africa, the United Kingdom, Germany, Brazil, Canada, Ukraine, and France to name a few.


The Extra Credit Awards (ECA) recognizes exceptional leaders and organizations using Hip Hop, technology, and social entrepreneurship to advance the education field. The ECA also honors pioneers and champions of the hip hop and education field. The Award was designed by Carlos Mare139 Rodriguez, an internationally acclaimed sculptor/ painter/ Hip Hop Scholar/ US Cultural Ambassador and creator of the annual BET/Black Entertainment Award.


The HHEC has been at the forefront of using technology to advance the field of Hip Hop Education. In 2009, through a partnership with New York University, Teachers College, and the University of Wisconsin, Hip Hop Association, and the Hip Hop Education Center presented the first inter-collegiate teleconferencing speakers series.