Headshot of Mario Acevedo

Mario Acevedo passed away in August 2016. 
His obituary can be found Here.


Before coming to CIE Mario graduated from Universidad del Valle (Univalle) in Cali, Colombia and then taught there. In 1985 he was awarded a Fulbright scholarship for university professors under the LASPAU program, and went first to Pittsburg to study English and then came to CIE at UMass.  After completing his degrees, he returned to Cali and resumed his career as a faculty member at Univalle.


While at the CIE, Mario met and formed a friendship with Brazilian educator Paulo Freire, who invited Mario to accompany him to visit Myles Horton at the Highlander Center in Tennessee. Mario remained in contact with Freire until Freire’s death in 1997, and continued to study, reflect upon, and teach from Freire’s writings.


Mario was instrumental in introducing Popular Education to Colombia, contributing to its development through classes at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, research, articles and other documentation. He was a leader in the founding of the interdisciplinary Popular Education Group at the university, and in establishing the undergraduate degree program in Popular Education which he directed for many years. Together with colleagues from the Group, he was advisor to the Popular Educators’ Network of Cali, and collaborated in writing a book about the Network’s experiences.


His commitment to Popular Education manifested itself in other professional venues as well, including numerous national and international consultancies; among them programs at the Institute for Training and Development in Amherst with Central American Peace Scholars, and the Fundater and Universidad Javeriana postgrad program in alternate management strategies for NGO’s, in Cali.


Mario and Kathy Searle were married while Mario was finishing his dissertation at CIE, they moved to Cali, Colombia when Mario resumed his post at Univalle. Separated in 2000, yet they remained close throughout the years.


In 2015 he retired from Univalle, where he had been a professor at the Instituto de Educación y Pedagogía for nearly four decades, and where he had held the posts of Director and subsequently, Sub-Director of Research and Postgraduate Studies. [2-24]


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CIE Graduate