Northeastern Illinois University
  African & African American Studies Program
Faculty Spotlight
Donald Maurice Waddell. . . .


 . . . is an Alumni of Wilberforce University (BA Degree) and The University of Chicago (MA Degree).  He currently resides in Chicago, Illinois where he teaches in the Social Work and African American Studies Programs at Northeastern Illinois University

        Donald Maurice Waddell was born in New Haven, Connecticut.  He is an author, comedian, instructor, and radio host.  He began writing at the age of 14, after taking a creative writing class in his sophomore year in high school.  While in this class, Donald knew he had found his calling.  Many recognized his talent for writing and soon he began compiling volumes and volumes of poems.  “It started with writing song lyrics to music that I would hear in my head.  These lyrics soon became poems.” 

        When asked where he gets his talent for writing he states, “I believe that it’s a gift from the Creator and I am humbled to be able to use it to touch the lives of others….” 

IMAGES: A Collection of Poetry featuring poems by D. Maurice Waddell Volume 1 is available on and

DONSONGS: An Anthology of Literary Sound Volume 2 is available on

        Donald is currently working on volume 3 of his collection entitled,  365: Imprints of a Beautiful MInd, Volume 3 by D. Puma coming Fall 2013 

        As an instructor at Northeastern Illinois University for the past 6+ years Waddell states that his goal is to teach students various ways of acquiring, analyzing, and evaluating information.  At the beginning of each semester he makes it a point to let the students know that he considers them more than students but colleagues. He believes this sets the stage to help them see themselves as part of the social service field and as a colleague we are to respect/empower each other as well as the population we serve.  In the classroom setting he tries to bring my energy, humor, and his experience in an attempt to make the learning experience productive and enjoyable for all.  He makes it a point to motivate and challenge students to confront new ideas and different points of views, all the while increasing their ability to discuss and defend their own positions both in discussions and in writing.  In the classroom setting Donald feels it is important to help students make the transition from academics to practice in a way that reduces anxieties about the field and prepares them for the current realities of the profession.  By using various tools along with the knowledge of addressing the characteristics of adult learners the ultimate goal in his teaching philosophy is to have a positive effect on the students’ professional career.  

        Donald has worked in the Social Service field for over 20 years.  He earned his undergraduate degree in Communications in 1988 from Wilberforce University and earned his Master’s degree in Social Work in 2001 from The University of Chicago.  In these years in the Social Service field he served a wide range of underserved populations.  His extensive experience in individual/group counseling/therapy, workshops, trainings, and program/curriculum development proved to be extremely helpfully and effective in the field and in the classroom setting.

        Donald currently works on various research and community projects. The most recent effort is the Building Bridges to Fatherhood program of Rush University. The Building Bridges to Fatherhood Program is a program the seeks to assist non custodial African American fathers that have children between the ages of 2-5 become more responsible in the lives of their children.  As Project Director/Consultant Donald was responsible for research, curriculum, and program development.  Duties also included recruiting, training, facilitation, program evaluation, video production, as well as collaborating with community based organizations in Cook County.  The program is currently in the second phase of the pilot process.

        Donald started his radio career as a student at Wilberforce University on the campus of Central State University in Ohio under the tutelage of Turk Logan (Legendary Dayton, Ohio radio host WDAO).  When Turk Logan took over as Program Director/Manager of Central State University’s WCSU Radio he conducted auditions for radio host for the Jazz/Smooth R&B format.  Upon meeting and hearing Donaold's voice and his knowledge of music he quickly made Donald a featured radio personality of WCSU.  The station received so much attention in the Dayton Area that it rivaled Logan’s old station WDAO.   Donald was the featured radio personality from his sophomore year until graduation.  Upon graduation he became a radio personality at a Top 40 station in Springfield, Ohio, WBLY where he expanded his knowledge and skills.  Currently Donald is co-producing and co-hosting a video magazine called The BIO set to air in the fall of 2013.  

Social Work

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