NFL Alum Alvin Pearman Took Classes at UVA, Now Teaches Classes at Stanford
Thousands of student-athletes in colleges across the country have started attending class this month either in-person or on-line.
NFL alumnus Alvin Pearman is also back in college, but he is teaching classes, not taking them.
Pearman, who spent six years as a running back in the league from 2005 to 2010, is now an assistant professor at Stanford University in Palo Alto. He teaches classes in the Graduate School of Education, mostly about education policy and quantitative methods. He also conducts research on how poverty and inequality shape the life chances of children, especially in rapidly changing cities.
Pearman was a fourth-round draft pick in 2005 by the Jaguars after his college career at the University of Virginia. He also played briefly for the Seahawks before completing his NFL days with the Titans in 2010.
“After I finished my NFL career in 2010,” Pearman explains, “I began graduate school at Vanderbilt University and I completed my Masters in 2012 and my Ph.D. in 2017. I spent my first two years as a professor at the University of Pittsburgh, and accepted a tenure track faculty position at Stanford last year.”
In the last few years, Pearman has published a dozen peer-reviewed journal articles, including “Gentrification, and Academic Achievement: A Review of Recent Research,” which recently received an award for excellence from the American Educational Research Association, the world’s leading association of scholars examining topics in education policy and practice.
Pearman has positive memories of his collegiate days and maintains close ties back East with his UVA friends and faculty.
“I remember taking a sports psychology class in my second year as an undergrad,” Pearman says. “It sticks out in my mind because it was the same semester I tore my ACL. I was able to apply some of the ideas I studied in class to my rehab. For example, I was studying outcome imagery…the idea that simply envisioning a specific skill can improve performance on that particular skill. It became part of my daily rehab.”
Pearman gained thousands of yards as a UVA and NFL running back. He also has covered a lot of ground in his post-NFL career since retiring a decade ago. In addition to his teaching and research, Pearman and his wife, Kristin, are raising three young children.
We at NFL Alumni wish Professor Pearman, his young family, and his Stanford students good health and continued success during these stressful COVID-19 days. You can follow his educational pursuits on Twitter at @francis_pearman or click here.