Department of Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education


Date of this Version



Hamann, E. T., Eckerson, J., & Larson, M., (2023). The High School in the Middle of Everywhere: Nebraska’s Lincoln High. In A. York, K. Welner, & L. Molner Kelley (Eds.) Schools of Opportunity. (pp. 158-175). Teachers College Press


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In 2002, world-renowned author Mary Pipher published a book about her home city, Lincoln Nebraska, playfully titled “The Middle of Everywhere” a tongue-in-cheek rejoinder to the idea that Nebraska is ‘the middle of nowhere.’ But word play aside, her title was empirically apt, as her volume documented how immigration and refugee resettlement were demographically transforming Nebraska’s capital city. As in other cities, resettlement was concentrated in some areas of Lincoln, placing differential burdens on different parts of the community’s institutional infrastructure. Of interest to readers of this volume, Lincoln’s refugees and immigrants were concentrated in the city’s oldest high school. This account shares how that school embraced the challenges of demographic change by valuing the knowledge, skills and experience of students and their families.