Randy Sprick's Safe & Civil Schools – Practical Solutions, Positive Results!


As a dedicated social change agent for underrepresented students in higher education, Dr. Jonli Tunstall has committed her career and volunteerism to creating programs, teaching courses, and student advocacy.

In her tenure at UCLA, Dr. Tunstall has served in a number of formal and informal positions that have contributed to the acceptance and graduation of underrepresented undergraduate students across the country. In her current role as a member of the senior leadership team in the Academic Advancement Program (AAP), Jonli oversees several programs and initiatives that works with first-generation, low-income, underrepresented students. Currently she directs two programs as part of the AAP team: VIP Scholars, a social justice college access program, and the Freshman and Transfer Summer Program. She also teaches courses in the African American Studies, Education, and Ethnomusicology Department at UCLA.

In addition to these roles, she is the co-founder of the Sister to Sister Institute that addresses the specific needs around the retention and socialization of Black women at historically white institutions.

She is coauthor of Expanding College Access for Urban Youth: What Schools and Colleges Can Do and All Students Must Thrive: Transforming Schools to Combat Toxic Stressors and Cultivate Critical Wellness. Her work in access and retention for Black students has been presented nationally.

As a testament to the exceptional leadership that Jonli provides, she was awarded the California Alliance for African American Educators Unsung Hero Award in January 2009 and and the “Ambassador of Education Award” by the National Congress of Black Women, Los Angeles Chapter, in 2019.

Jonli received her B.A. in Psychology from UCLA and her Ph.D. in Education, Urban Schooling concentration, from UCLA’s Graduate School of Education and Information Studies. She is committed to providing educational leadership, mentorship, empowerment, and hope to young people of all ages, contributing to a legacy of Black excellence.