Rolando Fernando

Director, Impact and Improvement


Areas of Expertise: data analytics, policy implementation, strategic planning

“Having worked with college students for a long time, what fascinates me is cultivating a more comprehensive view of a person’s life path and the trigger points that lead each person toward one direction or another. I am fortunate to have the conviction and motivation to continue broadening my realm of possibility – I wish the same for each and every child out there.”

Rolando Fernando is passionate about improving education with an intense focus on equity, and leads emerging components of the Student-Centered Learning Research Collaborative. He serves as the main liaison for multiple research teams and as project lead to support youth researchers with learning differences. His experience and expertise are crucial to the core work of the impact and improvement, engaging with an extensive network of partners in the field, identifying gaps in the evidence base and expanding efforts to prioritize equity in personalized competency based learning / student-centered learning research and implementation.

In his previous position as Senior Manager of Research and Evaluation with StrivePartnership, Rolando led efforts to mainstream a data-informed culture among key partners within the Greater Cincinnati urban core, using data analytics to provide robust evidence base for out-of-classroom interventions. Rolando came to KnowledgeWorks most recently via Los Angeles and the Philippines, where he held positions as Senior Lecturer at the University of the Philippines, Diliman and  as Research Fellow with the Institute for Strategic and Development Studies for more than 20 years. He taught courses in political philosophy, globalization theory, development, and quantitative/qualitative research methods. His most recent research and advocacy activities focused on climate change resilience, indigenous peoples’ rights and disaster and risk reduction management.

Rolando obtained his master’s in socio-cultural anthropology and development studies from Brown University and his bachelor’s in operations research and industrial engineering from Cornell University.