Hawani Negussie Ed.D.

SCHOOL OF Education

Hawani Negussie Ed.D.

Chair and Associate Professor


Early Childhood Education

Hawani Negussie Ed.D.


Dr. Hawani Negussie is the Chair and Associate Professor of UMass Global Early Childhood Education. She has been in the field of Early Childhood Care and Education for over twenty years holding various positions in the birth-21 (PK-16) educational settings. Her practice, approach, and global perspectives are informed by her wide range of experiences, education, and training with leading institutions such as UCLA Early Intervention Program, UCLA Children’s Hospital, Early Childhood Foundation at Cedar Sinai Medical Center, and California State University Long Beach-Department of the College of Education.

Dr. Negussie offers expertise in Early Childhood Education, Child Development, Infant Mental Health, Indigenous Education Systems, International Research, Program Development, and Administration. She has demonstrated knowledge in transformational leadership, statewide program/project oversight, organizational management, teacher training, and assessment/outcome including ECE curriculum and instructional design. She has provided strategic and operational leadership in implementing effective early learning program standards at the state and international levels. Her extensive work with children and families from various backgrounds and settings, locally and globally, with a focus on those from systemically neglected communities, continues to influence her outlook on addressing the compounding challenges children and families face due to inequitable opportunities. Her research interest includes an examination of indigenous knowledge in early learning environments, implications of aid imposed by global education policies, and using culture as a central strategy in pre-primary education.

Her research has been published in international journals focused on leadership and policy. Dr. Negussie is the founder and executive director of Early Childhood Education Ethiopia, a nonprofit organization broadly engaged in elevating early learning, child development, and equitable education in rural communities in Ethiopia.


  • Early Childhood Education


Ed.D. in Educational Leadership

California State University, Long Beach

Dissertation:“Integration of Indigenous Knowledge and Cultural Practices in Early Childhood Care and Education in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. An Exploratory Case Study”

M.A. in Elementary Education / Early Childhood Education

California State University, Long Beach

B.A. in Child Development

California State University, Northridge
Minor: Psychology

Scholarly Activities

Negussie, H., Slater, C. (under review)

Challenges to integrating indigenous knowledge and cultural practices in early childhood and education in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

The Educational Forum

Culture and Early Education

American Educational Research Association (AERA) 

Chicago, IL

Indigenous Curriculum Development in Early Education Programs

California State University, Long Beach, Educational Leadership Symposium

Board Member, Head Start Training and Research Foundation (TRF)
Chair: Educational Leadership Network for Early Childhood Leaders (NECL)

Professional Experiences

Assistant Professor

University of Massachusetts Global

Courses: Early Childhood Education, Leadership in ECCE


California State University, Long Beach

Course: Leadership and Supervision of ECCE Programs

Adjunct Professor

El Camino College

Course: Child Development

Program Director

Mattel Child Development Center

Evaluated classroom curriculum, developed action plans with classroom teaching teams and monitored progress toward goals for the leading provider of early education and preschools, employer-sponsored childcare, backup care, educational advisory services and other work/life solutions. Engaged teachers in a critical, self-reflective process during staff meetings and annual evaluations.

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