Pamela Cantor

Pamela Cantor

Founder & Senior Science Advisor

Turnaround for Children

Austin, TX USA

If we created optimal learning experiences with incredible relationships for kids, where kids felt like somebody had their back always, the upside of that is just huge.


By Roadtrip Nation

Pamela Cantor


My road in life has taken me all over.
I experienced trauma in childhood, which caused me to think of myself as a mess—I sought help from a psychiatrist who saw my worth and encouraged my dreams of becoming a doctor.
I earned my bachelor’s degree in art and took classes in art, art history, dance, and folklore and mythology.
I hadn't taken a single math or science course, so when I decided to become a doctor, I had to take GED courses in math and science so I could apply to a pre-med program.
I completed a pre-med program at Columbia University and medical school at Cornell University.
After medical school, I did my residency in child psychiatry, then began to build a private practice and worked at the Yale Child Study Center.
After the September 11 attacks, I helped lead a study to assess the levels of trauma among New York City public school children—after visiting schools for the study, I founded Turnaround for Children.
I stopped practicing as a doctor and used Turnaround for Children to get what I’d learned in medical school about kids and learning into the hands of teachers and schools.
Now, I translate the science of learning and development to transform the settings where children learn and grow to unlock the potential inside every child.
Keep following my journey


High School
Sarah Lawrence College
GED Courses in Math and Science
New York City
Post-Baccalaureate Pre-Med
Columbia University
Medical Degree
Cornell University


Founder & Senior Science Advisor

I founded a nonprofit to equip educators with the skills and knowledge to help all children thrive.

Career Roadmap

My work combines:
My work combines:
Helping People

Advice for Getting Started

Here's the first step for high school students

If you're thinking about pursuing a certain field or subject but you're unsure if it's right for you, get it out of your head and turn it into an experience. Stop ruminating on it and try it out. When you turn it into an experience, a couple of things will be true. You're either going to find out that you like that subject as a hobby but not a career passion or you'll meet someone who introduces you to something you didn't expect at all, and you'll realize that it is really what you want to do.


The Noise I Shed

From Parents:

"You're not allowed to speak about your trauma."

Challenges I Overcame

Imposter Syndrome