Dr. Presswood completed his doctorate program at the University of California | Irvine in Modern Chinese History. His transnational research projects interrogate the historical record of socio-cultural interactions between Africa, the African Diaspora and China in the 20th century. He is the writer, producer, and director of the documentary Yellow Jazz Black Music that traces the story and influence of African American jazz musicians in Shanghai from the 1920s to the present-day. He has also contributed to mainstream periodicals like The Atlantic.
Dr. Presswood is an avid believer in the transformative experience of overseas study. In 2005, he founded and operated the first African American study abroad organization focused exclusively on increasing the number of African American students studying overseas. In five years, his organization successfully matriculated dozens of Black students on his China program. In 2021, he was a Leading Edge Fellow with American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS) Postdoctoral Fellowship working on study abroad equity with a major study abroad institution.
His research interests include Sino-Black Relations, 20th century African American History, Race and Racism, Jazz History, Documentary Films, and Black Internationalism.
Dr. Presswood is also a member of the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations