Current Students

PhD Students

Aminger, Walter
Walter Aminger is a second year doctoral student with an emphasis in Science Education working with Dr. Julie Bianchini. He received his B.S. in Molecular Biology from the University of West Florida with a minor in Spanish in 2005 and his M.S.T. in Biology from the University of West Florida in 2009. After his graduate work, he spent almost five years teaching high school sciences (Biology and Chemistry) in Arizona. During this time, he successfully developed and implemented the new science curriculum and helped students master the state standard test (AIMS). Though his research interests are relatively broad, he is interested in science education, ELL students, technology, hands-on activities, professional development, curriculum development, and persistence/retention. He welcomes your emails at: waminger@education.ucsb.edu

Aragón, María José
María José Aragón is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Education with an emphasis in Cultural Perspectives and Comparative Education. Her advisor is Dr. Richard Durán. She received an M.A. in International Educational Development from Teachers College, Columbia University and a B.S. in Human Development from Cornell University. Her research focuses on students’ language and literacy practices in linguistically, culturally, and racially diverse learning contexts. Her areas of interest include language and schooling, educational equity, sociocultural linguistics, critical pedagogy, bilingual/dual language programs, and education policy. She can be reached at maragon@education.ucsb.edu

Arguera, Stephanie M.
Stephanie is a fourth-year PhD student focusing her research in spatial identity development, place-based education and educational aspirations of first-gen Latix youth, under the broad area of Culture and Development; her advisor is Dr. Betsy Brenner. A Texas native, her M.A. research at UT San Antonio considered Black-Brown conflict and solidarity in urban borderscapes of East Houston. Prior to coming to UCSB, she worked in educational consulting in leadership development with youth and educational administration, as well as with parental engagement.  She has volunteered for nearly two years at the St. George Youth Center, creating two murals with IV teens in Estero Park. This year, Stephanie is also the lead coordinator on Curie-osity Project, now in its third year. She has been a Teaching Assistant with the Department of Black Studies for over two years and is the current Unit Chair of the Academic Student Employees' union, UAW 2865. Stephanie can be reached at sarguera@ucsb.edu

Balos, Noreen
Noreen Balos is a doctoral student with interests in STEM Education, Culture in STEM, and Access & Equity in STEM. Noreen is currently researching engineering and science design experiences for undergraduate, community college minority students and veterans who major in STEM related subjects and wish to explore a civil career in the Navy. The goal of the study is to provide insights into veterans' and students' perceptions of science and engineering as a way of thinking and being into a STEM major and professional, while gauging transformations in student thinking, understanding, and perceiving Naval work. The team hope the work also gives insight into factors affecting veterans' and minority students' preparation, participation and academic success in STEM. Noreen can be reached at Noreen.Balos@ucsb.edu.

Barrios, John Cano
John is a second year doctoral student. He is from Barranquilla (Colombia) where he used to teach and research in the areas of educational technology, online education and intercultural education. He received a bachelors degree in Computer Science and a master's degree in Education with an emphasis in Educational Technology at Universidad del Norte (Barranquilla), where he taught undergraduate and graduate students in face-to-face, blended and online environments. He is currently working alongside his advisor, Dr. Arya, as a technology specialist within the McEnroe Reading Clinic, where he supports different community-based projects. He is very interested in researching how technology can promote engagement and motivation for learning, as well as in designing curriculum to foster digital literacy in students.  John can be reached at  jcanobarrios@ucsb.edu or on his personal blog:  johncanob.blogspot.com

Bradford, Keri
Keri Bradford (Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma) is a third-year M.A./Ph.D. student in the Department of Education, working in the areas of Culture and Development, and Policy, Leadership, and Research Methods. Her advisors are Dr. Sharon Conley and Dr. Hsiu-Zu Ho. Her research focuses on issues of access and retention affecting Native American college students. In 2011, she completed a certificate in Tribal Law ("Working in Contemporary Native Nations") from UCLA. Keri can be reached by email at kbradford@education.ucsb.edu.

 

Carter, Delwin
Delwin Carter is a doctoral student emphasizing in quantitative methods. His advisor is Karen Nylund-Gibson. He received his B.A. in Psychology and M.A. in Experimental Psychology at California State University, Northridge. His broad interests include latent variable analysis, measurement, and structural equation modeling. More specifically, he has done research in several substantive areas including peer victimization, perceived discrimination, and depression. Methodologically speaking, his current research involves mediation/moderation, factor analysis, measurement invariance, and item-order effects. 

Chagolla, Diana
Diana Chagolla is a doctoral student in the Gevirtz Graduate School of Education, specializing in the area of Culture and Development; her advisor is Dr. Laura Romo. Diana obtained her bachelors degree in Sociology from San Diego State University (SDSU). While in San Diego, she worked with community-led organizations to address educational and human rights concerns in her community. At UCSB, she has served as a graduate mentor for first generation undergraduate students participating in the New Heights Mentoring Program offered through the Chicano Studies Institute (CSI). Diana continues to mentor undergraduate students via her role as a graduate student research assistant at the CSI Center for Research in Latino Health and Adolescent Development. Her research interests are health education and health psychology as it pertains to Latinx/a/o adolescents, families, and communities. Her current research focuses on how Latina mothers communicate with adolescent daughters about healthy lifestyles, while providing messages that encourage healthier eating and exercising habits, and messages cautioning daughters about chronic health diseases. Diana can be reached at: diana_chagolla@ucsb.edu.

Clairmont, Anthony
Anthony Clairmont is a doctoral student with an emphasis in Applied Linguistics working with Dr. Jin Sook Lee. He received his BA in philosophy from Sewanee: The University of the South in 2011. A year later, he earned an MA in French from Middlebury College. While living abroad during much of this period, he conducted anthropological research with the School for International Training in Rabat, Morocco and studied philosophy at La Sorbonne in Paris, France. He returned to the US to teach French at an all-boys prep school in Cleveland, Ohio. His research interests include culturally sustaining pedagogy, teacher professionalism, systemic educational inequalities, and philosophical issues in the social sciences. You may contact Anthony at: clairmont@education.ucsb.edu.

Chen, Huay
Huay is a first-year doctoral student working with Dr. Jin Sook Lee. She completed her B.A. at UCLA in Linguistics & Asian Languages and Cultures, and her M.A. in Elementary Education. After teaching elementary school in the NYCDOE for three years. Huay went back to NYU to complete a post-MA advanced certification program in Bilingual Education. Her interests lie in language and education, bilingualism, language acquisition, and heritage language speakers. Huay is a Gates Millennium Scholar. She can be contacted at huaycw@gmail.com

Dannhauser, Michael
Michael is a second-year doctoral student in the Culture and Development program with an emphasis in Cognitive Science. His advisor is Sharon Conley. Michael earned his B.S. in elementary education and his M.S. in special education, both from Manhattan College, and spent 5 years as a classroom teacher in the Boston area. His research interests include teacher education and teacher perceptions, as well as improvement science. He can be reached at mdannhauser@ucsb.edu.

 

Downey, Jonathan
Jonathan is a doctoral student in the Learning, Culture and Technology program. Prior to arriving at UCSB, he studied Spanish literature at Tufts University in Boston (B.A.) and language acquistion at the University of the Basque Country in Northern Spain (M.A.) He has worked as an ESL instructor in Europe and the Middle East, and as a high school Spanish teacher in Colorado. Currently, he is building course materials for an online UC Basque Language and Culture course, and is employed as a teaching assistant in the UCSB English Department. Jonathan’s research is oriented towards developing tools and resources for autonomous ESL learners. His specific research interests include pronunciation training with smart phone apps, online language learning platforms, L2 fluency perception, and augmented reality for multimodal input. Feel free to contact him at: jdowney@education.ucsb.edu

Edwards, Jeremy
Jeremy Edwards is a Ph.D. student in Education with an emphasis in Culture and Development. In 2017, he received a Master of Arts in Education, during which he conducted a case study analysis on a university-based academic preparation program in an effort to better understand program sustainability, especially when examining the delivery of college-going services and established relationships between the program and secondary schools being served. In addition to his prior research on university partnerships with local schools, his current work involves capturing the cultural and historical practices of access to higher education for black students in a U.S. context, while also highlighting and providing a narrative for students' experiences in their preparations for the completion of college. His general research interests include access and equity issues within a socio-educational context, urban education, adolescent youth development and self-concept, and community cultural wealth/capital frameworks. Jeremy can be reached at jedwards@education.ucsb.edu.

Ekman, Tom
Tom is a first-year doctoral student. Immediately prior to attending UCSB, he taught bilingual Science for 3 years at a social-mission school in Mexico. Ekman is the co-author of Babies of Technology: Assisted Reproduction and the Rights of the Child (Yale University Press, 2017) He holds an M.Ed. in Secondary School Science Instruction from Hawaii Pacific University, a J.D. with certification in Public Interest Law from The University of San Francisco School of Law, and a B.A. from Williams College. Earlier in his career, he was an Environmental Planner II and Director of Content Development for National Geographic Maps Technology Division. His research interests are in technology, environmental education, bilingualism, free-choice learning, access to education, and systemic interventions. Tom can be reached at tomekman@ucsb.edu.

Evanstein (Bernstein), Emily
Emily is a doctoral student studying Special Education under the guidance of her advisor, Dr. George Singer. She also works at Antioch University, Santa Barbara, in the teacher credentialing program, where she teaches special education courses for multiple subject and dual credential candidates. Prior to her doctoral studies, Emily taught special education at the elementary level in east San Jose and Santa Barbara, California. She holds a Mild/Moderate Education Specialist Credential. Emily's research focuses on how general education and special education teachers can be taught to collaborate more fully. She plans to investigate this topic in her dissertation research. She can be reached at ekbernstein@ucsb.edu.

Fahler, Valentina
Valentina is a second-year doctoral student in the Education department with an emphasis in language and literacy working with Dr. Karen Lunsford and Dr. Charles Bazerman. She received her B.A. in Letters (with a focus in Linguistics) from the Universidad de Buenos Aires (Argentina) in 2015, and a specialization degree in Education Policy from the Universidad Torcuato di Tella (Argentina) in 2017. Her research interest is writing in higher education; specifically, how undergraduate students build knowledge within the writing practices in their particular fields. Prior to arriving to UCSB, Valentina was an initial literacy teacher at the Fundación Franciscana, a non governmental organization. She was also part of a research group from the Universidad de Buenos Aires that focused in undergraduate student writing in humanities degrees. Feel free to contact her at fahler@education.ucsb.edu

Ford, Katerina
Katerina Ford is a third year doctoral student in the Education program with an emphasis in Special Education, Disability, and Risk Studies, advised by Dr. Mian Wang. She received her B.A. in Psychology with a minor in Applied Psychology from UC Santa Barbara in 2010. After her undergraduate work, she completed the Global Urban Trek internship with InterVarsity in Lima, Peru. Upon returning to Santa Barbara, she worked as literacy tutor with AmeriCorps for one year and continued to work as a clinician and parent educator with Koegel Autism Consultants. Her research interests include: remote interventions and trainings through programs like Skype, social conversation skills, supervision of behavioral interventions for ASD, and introducing Pivotal Response Treatment in countries that lack services for individuals with autism. Please feel free to contact her at: kford@education.ucsb.edu

Gribble, Jim
Jim is a doctoral student with an emphasis in technology at the elementary school level. His advisor is Dr. Danielle Harlow. He is interested in researching the impact computer coding has on the communication skills of children with autism. Prior to arriving at UCSB he was a Kindergarten teacher with TeachForAmerica in Charlotte, a founding 2nd grade teacher at an environmental start-up school in Chicago, technology coordinator and teacher at an IB PYP school in London and a 2nd grade Science and Coding teacher in San Francisco. He wrote the programming curriculum (based on Scratch language) for a school founded by the Chief Scientist of Twitter and founded a company dedicated to teaching children how to code in after-school and one-on-one contexts. Jim taught teachers how to code in the Design Lab at the Sonoma County Office of Education. He earned a B.A. in Psychology at Marquette University, an elementary teaching credential at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte and an M.Ed. at San Francisco State University. Feel free to email Jim at: jgribble@education.ucsb.edu.

Grue, Michelle
Michelle Grue’s interdisciplinary research in Education and Writing draws on Black feminist, digital and African American rhetorics, and critical race/anti-racist education theories to investigate diversity issues in academia. Her current research projects include a joint study with Black studies and sociology to grade sociology PhD departments on how well they prepare their students to research and teach on issues of race gender, and dissertation research on how multimodal composition can help first-generation college students think fluidly about their futures, using Afrofuturist, speculative, and fluid fiction as a mediation. Her master’s thesis explored how Black female faculty utilize the digital environment to mitigate isolation, share their research, and cultivate a national and international reputation. Building her own national and international reputation, Michelle has presented at several conferences across her disciplinary interests in both the US and UK. She attended Pepperdine University for her undergraduate studies in Creative Writing. After which, she worked there as an academic advisor and tutoring coordinator while completing her teaching credentials in English and History. Teaching writing and education courses at the collegiate level over the last two years, Michelle enjoys using her pedagogical, experiential, and theoretical knowledge with the same diverse student population that inhabits the focus of her research. She has completed 3 years of her MA/PhD program in the Girvetz Graduate School of Education at the University of California, Santa Barbara and looks forward to continuing her studies there. Mgrue@ucsb.edu Twitter: @mnpgrue

Guerrero, Ana Y.
Ana Y. Guerrero was born in Mexico and raised in Goleta, CA. She is a PhD student in the UCSB Department of Education, conducting research on Latinx students' college and career aspiration development. She received her Bachelor's Degree in Sociology from UC Berkeley and a Master's degree in Education with an emphasis in Culture and Development from UC Santa Barbara. Currently, Ana is the Graduate Student Mentor/Program Assistant for the ONDAS Student Center as part of the Title V grant to UCSB as a Hispanic Serving Institution, and a TA for the ED 118 course, The Research University and the Transfer Student Experience. She is an active member of the Bridging Multiple Worlds Alliance, bringing together grad students and faculty from several universitits to plan and conduct research on P-20 strategies improving access to college among communities underrepresented in higher education. Her research interests include academic and career identity development, Hispanic Serving Institutions, multicultural education and general Latinx and first-generation to college student concerns in higher education. Ana has also worked with the youth in her community for many years in college preparation and leadership programs. You can reach Ana at the following email address: guerrero@education.ucsb.edu.

Hai, Jessica
Jessica Hai is a third-year graduate student in the Special Education, Disability and Risk Studies program. With the guidance of her advisor, Dr. Mian Wang she has been able to explore the special education community with a cultural lens. Her research interests include the cultural implications of Autism Spectrum Disorder and how that affects the process of assessment and intervention services. Her long term goal is to provide more awareness to families of cultural backgrounds who currently are stigmatized to seek assistance or do not have access to those resources. She is also a clinician providing behavioral interventions and Pivotal Response Treatment (PRT) to individuals on the spectrum at the Koegel Autism Center. Any questions or contact queries can be directed to her email: Jhai@education.ucsb.edu

Hallowell, David
David Hallowell David Hallowell currently fills his days with doctoral studies in education, with an emphasis in child and adolescent development. He keeps his perspective fresh with an interdisciplinary emphasis in cognitive science. David has pursued his interest in cognitional theory as an undergraduate in psychology and social behavior at the University of California, Irvine; as a U.S. Fulbright Fellow (2005/6) in Vienna, Austria; for his M.A. in philosophy at Boston College; and now for the PhD in the Gevirtz Graduate School of Education. He is currently doing innovative research on how young children reason about plane and solid shapes across 2D and 3D representations. His areas of interest are spatial reasoning, early geometry learning, and neo-Piagetian theory (Case & Okamoto). He also dabbles in LEGO robotics. He responds to email at dhallowell@education.ucsb.edu. You can follow his work at https://ucsb.academia.edu/DavidHallowell and at http://scholar.google.com/citations?user=XNyn2RIAAAAJ&hl

Hao, Jing
Jing Hao Jing Hao is a M.A./Ph.D. student in the Gevirtz Graduate School of Education at the University of California, Santa Barbara, in the area of Cultural Perspectives and Comparative Education. Her faculty advisors are Dr. Cook-Gumperz and Dr. Conley. She received her B.A. in Journalism from Northwest University (Shannxi, China) in 2009. She received her M.Ed. in Education from University of Central Oklahoma in 2012. She is currently working on a dissertation examining Chinese international students' pre-arrival preparation and post-arrival adaptation issues in U.S. University.  Her research interests also include: internationalization of higher education, intercultural adaptation and institution services of international students.  Jing Hao can be contacted at: jhao@education.ucsb.edu

Harris, Samantha
Samantha is a doctoral student in the Language and Literacy Education program. She studied English Literature at the University of Maryland in College Park (B.A.) and Linguistics with a focus on TESOL at Georgetown University in Washington D.C. (M.A.) She was an ESL instructor at Baltimore/Washington area community colleges for three years before coming to UCSB. Her research interests include equitable education for English Language Learners and Heritage Language maintenance. She is currently working as an instructor for the School Kids Investigating Language in Life and Society Program (SKILLS). She is also working on a project that examines heritage language learning and multiracial Korean Americans. Samantha can be reached at syharris@ucsb.edu.

Hoerberg, Destiny
Destiny is a doctoral student in the Special Education, Developmental, and Risk Studies program. With a strong background in working with children with autism and related disorders, both as a para-educator and behavioral therapist, and with an undergraduate degree in Psychology from California State University, Channel Islands, Destiny is interested in improving parent/caregive education and interaction with children with disabilities by further developing and improving current evidence-based therapeutic intervention practices. Additionally, Destiny is interested in exploring the neurodiversity that may exist between typical and atypical children to better support and foster their ability to acquire and maintain more desirable social and academic skills. Destiny is currently working under the advisory of Dr. George Singer, and may be reached at  dhoerberg@ucsb.edu.

Faith Hyun
Faith is a first year doctoral student with research interests in science education, working with Dr. Diana Arya and Dr. Julie Bianchini. She received an undergraduate degree in biology from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. Her major research interest is the effective and engaging pedagogical approach in competitive society, or learning environment. She would like to study further how collaborative engagement and interactions in a science classroom enhance student learning. Another significant interest is research on designing curriculum for the collaboratibve work of students, considering individual differences, that would further enrich their learning. Faith can be reached at hhyun@ucsb.edu.

Jessop, Raheem
Raheem is a second year PhD student in the department of education with a concentration on Culture and Development. His research will look at college decision-making among African American high school students and analyze the factors that make them choose between a Predominantly White Institution (PWI) and a Historically Black College or University. Raheem graduated from Morehouse College in 2017 and he uses his experience of Black education to pursue his passion and ensure Black students receive the best education and experience a school has to offer. 

Jing Yu
Jing Yu is a third-year doctoral student in Department of Education with an interdisciplinary emphasis in Appliied Linguistics advised by Diana Atya.  She received M.A. in TESOL from the Ohio State University in 2015.  Her research interested include: second language socialization. academic discourse socialization as well as 'third space theory' in intercultural communication.  She majorly looks at the languaculture socialization of international Chinese undergraduates within the US higher education, including academic challenges, social internaction and cultural adjustment. Specifically, she focuses primarily on how social identities and cultural practices are brought into being through students 'linguistic interaction in the classroom.  Ethnographic methodology has been adopted to investigate what cultural knowledge and practices may support or challenge Chinesse international students' experiences during their process of adapation in a new learning milieu.  Jing Yu can be reached at jyu@education.ucsb.edu

Katz, Daniel
Danny Katz is a third year graduate student with interests in quantitative methods, education policy, and educational measurement. His advisers are Dr. Andrew Maul and Dr. Karen Nylund-Gibson. Danny received his BA in political science from UCSB where he was introduced to quantitative methods of analysis in the social sciences. After graduating, he spent roughly three years working at an academic publisher, sparking his interests in educational research and measurement. Between working at a publisher and going to graduate school, Danny spent a year travelling across the country to race his bike while also working at a bike shop. Danny is currently involved in projects related to educational assessment at UCSB, measurement  and, more recently, the California Dropout Research Project. Other lingering areas of interest include vocational and technical education and The Lexile. Danny can be reached at dkatz@education.ucsb.edu

Kemp, Jacqueline
Jacqueline Kemp is a doctoral student in the Department of Education with a focus in culture and development. She also participates in the interdisciplinary emphasis in Language, Interaction, and Social Organization. Her advisor is Dr. Amy Kyratzis. She received a B.S. in Human Development and Family Studies and a M.S. in Human Development and Social Policy from the University of Utah. She has taught university courses at The University of Utah in the Department of Family and Consumer Studies and at Santa Clara University in the Liberal Studies department, including: Development in Infancy and Childhood and Early Childhood Education Curriculum. In addition to teaching and research, Jacqueline has been the Director of three university-affiliated early childhood centers and an active member of NAEYC. Her research interests include: storytelling and story-acting in early childhood classrooms, preschool children’s narrative development, preschool peer group culture, and language and socialization in preschool peer groups.Please feel free to email Jacqueline at jkemp@education.ucsb.edu or review her professional materials at:  https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Jacqueline_Kemp

Kennedy, Kelsee
Kelsee Kennedy is a fourth year doctoral candidate in the Department of Education with an emphasis in Special Education, Disabilities, and Risk Studies (SPEDR). She received a bachelors degree from UCSB in Psychology in 2011 as well as an Education Specialist Instruction Credential for individuals with exceptionalities who have moderate to severe support needs and a Master of Arts in Education with an emphasis in SPEDR in 2013. In 2015, she completed an Education Specialist Instruction Credential for individuals with exceptionalities who have mild to moderate support needs at Antioch University, Santa Barbara. Currently, she works as an Education Specialist for a full inclusion program for exceptional students, a teaching assistant for the Language Arts course in the Teacher Education Program at UCSB, and a Cooperating Teacher at Antioch University. Her past applied experiences include working as a Behaviorist in school settings for Hope School District, a Program Supervisor and Researcher at the Koegel Autism Clinic, and a Reading Instructor for English Language Learners at the McEnroe Reading Clinic at UC Santa Barbara. Her research interests include: Autism, Emotional Disturbance, Multi-Tiered Systems of Support for Behavior/Character Development, Social Emotional Learning, Restorative Justice Discipline, Teacher Education, and the Pipeline to Prison phenomenon for students with exceptionalities. Please feel free to contact her at kkennedy@education.ucsb.edu.

Kim, Aram
Aram Kim is a doctoral student with an emphasis in cultural perspective and comparative education. Her advisors are Dr. Dorothy Chun and Dr. Diana Arya. Prior to attending UCSB, she worked as an English instructor at a language institute in Korea teaching adult learners. She received her M.A in Education at UCSB focusing on L2 language learners’ reading strategies. She is currently working on her a dissertation examining the relationship between community-based literacy activities and literate identity construction. Her research interests includes literacy practice and identity construction, literacy practice in non-school setting, second language acquisition, reading comprehension, interaction and dialogue in language learning, discourse analysis, social context of language learning. She is a UCSB Campus liaison of AERA Division G. You may reach Aram at: okim@education.ucsb.edu

Kirksey, Jacob
Jacob Kirksey is a PhD candidate in the Department of Education and a graduate research fellow with the National Science Foundation. At the heart of his research are the questions: Who is left out of consideration of mainstream education policy? What are the consequences? What can we do about it? Drawing from various perspectives and interdisciplinary frameworks in educational policy, Jacob's research examines unintended consequences in educational policy and focuses on frequently forgotten populations. Specifically, his research has examined whether general education teachers are prepared to teach in inclusive classrooms, how to best prepare people with disabilities to succeed in STEM, and the determinants and consequences of chronic absenteeism and truancy in K-12. Previously, Jacob taught drama in a small school district and served on the school board for a charter school in the Pikes Peak Region. You can follow Jacob on Twitter @jjacobkirksey or by visiting his website: www.jjacobkirksey.com. His email is jkirksey@education.ucsb.edu.

Kwong, Wai-Yee Ann
Ann Wai-Yee Kwong is a Ph.D. student in the education program with the emphasis of Special Education, Disabilities, and Risk Studies advised by Dr. Wang. She received her B.A. in Psychology and a minor in Education from UC Berkeley as a Gates Millennium scholar. Prior to her attendance at UC Santa Barbara, she worked as an education technician intern in Washington DC disaggregating student suicidality data and analyzing its negative impact on both student and school excellence. Ann testified at the U.S. Senate hearing in 2014 to advocate for herself and others, informing policy makers of the attitudinal and tangible societal barriers which limit the potentials of people with disabilities. Her research interests include: creation of innovative workforce development curriculum for transition age youth with disabilities, self-determination, and cultural implications of professional and family partnerships. She is currently collaborating with UCP Work Inc. on designing and implementing curricula to increase competitive integrated employment for individuals with disabilities and their families; she recently concluded a project with the Institute for Educational Leadership (IEL) on implications of cultural reciprocity with the implementation of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act and pre-employment transition services. In addition, Ann co-founded Survive or Thrive where she designs and facilitates workshops as well as mentors youth with disabilities and their families. In a professional capacity, she also serves on various boards including the California Department of Rehabilitation's Advisory Committee and the Association on Higher Education and Disability. Through her research and advocacy, Ann hopes to continue empowering others to envision, define, and achieve their future aspirations. She can be reached at: akwong@education.ucsb.edu.

La Joy, Jonna
Jonna La Joy is a doctoral student with an emphasis in Science and Mathematics Education. Her advisor is Dr. Yukari Okamoto. Jonna received her M.A. in Child and Adolescent Development from San José State University in 2013 and received her B.A. in Psychology from Sonoma State University in 2009. Her research interests include mathematics and science education, quantitative research methodology, educational psychology, child and adolescent development, and cognitive science. Her current research is on fractions and the influence of procedural and conceptual knowledge on mathematical self-efficacy and attitudes about mathematics. jlajoy@education.ucsb.edu   or review her professional work at:  https://ucsb.academia.edu/JonnaLaJoy

Langlo, Tatzia
Tatzia Langlo is a PhD Candidate in the Department of Education in the research focus area of Cultural Perspectives and Comparative Education, working with Professor Jenny Cook-Gumperz and Dr. Tine Sloan as her advisors. Langlo’s research interests reach into the development of global learning-teaching communities and the need for increased communication, cultural awareness, and contextual competencies involved with interacting as citizens on the stage of the global world. As a scholar and researcher she works with a non-profit organization based on principles and practices of civil participation, service-learning, and education assistance through development of local and global relationships. She maintains interdisciplinary Ph.D. emphases in Global Studies and Language, Interaction, and Social Organization. 

Lee, Wona
Wona Lee is a doctoral student with an emphasis in cultural perspectives and comparative education working with Dr. Jin Sook Lee. She was born and raised in Korea and moved to the States 17 years ago. While trying to get accustomed to her new life in this diverse society as a mother of two American born Korean children, Wona became passionate about bilingualism and heritage language maintenance. After getting a master's degree in applied linguistics at San Diego State University, she taught various Korean language classes and introductory linguistics classes at various places.  At present, Wona’s specific interest is how children learn in a bilingual context. In order to explore this topic, she is working on the data from a Korean/English dual language immersion program.  Wona may be reached at: wlee@education.ucsb.edu

Lew, Lilly Chung
Lilly is a fourth-year doctoral student in the Education department with a Language and Literacy emphasis.  She earned her B.A. in European History at University of California, Riverside (UCR) and her M.A. in Education: Curriculum and Instruction at California State University, Los Angeles (CSULA) with an emphasis in literacy specialist. Prior to pursuing doctoral studies, Lilly taught writing composition for secondary education (grades 7-12), assisted with implementation of large scale writing assessments in the Los Angeles metropolitan area and is a fellow of the Los Angeles Writing Project (LAWP). Under the advisement of Dr. Richard Durán, she is exploring storytelling in community-based literacies, equity and access to technology, and the learning opportunities made available through university-community partnerships.  Lilly is also interested in the role of literacy in identity development and the ways that engaging in literacy activities could foster human agency. Her research has been made possible through her affiliation with researchers at both University-Community (UC) Links and the Center for Education Research on Literacies, Learning & Inquiry in Networking Communities (LINC).   She is also serving as the campus liaison for Division G: Social Context of Education at the American Educational Research Association (AERA).  You may contact Lilly at: llew@education.ucsb.edu

Li, Simeng (Karen)
Simeng (Karen) is a doctoral candidate with an emphasis in special education and learning technology, advised by Dr. Mian Wang. She received her B.A. in Journalism and M.S. in Instructional Technology from Jilin University, China. Prior to joining University of California Santa Barbara, she taught elementary school students in China. She also worked for a non-governmental organization in New Delhi, India to develop teaching programs for underprivileged school children. Currently, she is working on a research project in learning science as applied to STEM higher education pedagogy with Dr. Mian Wang and Dr. Michael Gerber. Meanwhile, she is also collaborating with three special education schools to develop an evidence-based learning application for students with Autism Spectrum Disorders. Her research interests include: instructional technologies, students with developmental disabilities, and inclusion education in China. She can be reached at: sli@education.ucsb.edu

Lin, Yixin
Yixin Lin is a doctoral student with an emphasis in Special Education working with Dr. Mian Wang. She received her B.A. in Business Administration from Southwestern University of Finance and Economics in China. In the meantime, she worked as a volunteer teacher in a special education school for three years. Then she received an M.S. from Columbia University in Social Work. During her graduate study, she also worked as an intern in Hamilton-Madison House Childcare Center and the Association to Benefit Children in New York.  Her research interests include: autism ,developmental delay, inclusive education in both United States and China, and cross-cultural special education. Though her research interests are relatively broad, she is currently involved in research about an autism app design with her advisor. Her longer term research purpose is to further study on inclusive education of children with autism and developmental delay. Yixin can be reached at yixinlin@umail.ucsb.edu.

Macias, Heather
Heather Macias Heather Macias is a doctoral student with research interests in multilingual literacy, literacy education, and sociocultural learning theory under Dr. Richard Duran; she also has interdisciplinary research interests in applied linguistics and feminist studies. Heather received her B.A. in Fine Arts from the University of Southern California in 2006 and received a single subject teaching credential in both English and Fine Arts, as well as an M.A.T. in Secondary Education from the University of Southern California in 2007. After graduation, Heather taught for seven years at the largest charter school in the nation, Granada Hills Charter High School, where she taught English/Language Arts and served as a community service-based club advisor, in addition to working as an assistant cheer coach/advisor for nationally ranked teams.  Previously, Heather served as the President of the Graduate Student Association for the Education Department. Currently, she is the Vice President of Academic Affairs for the Graduate Student Association at UCSB, the UCSB Campus Liaison Representative for the American Educational Research Association (AERA), the Graduate Student Representative for the University of California Student Mental Health Oversight Committee, and the Graduate Student Representative for the UCSB Student Resources Building Governance Board.  Heather may be reached at:  hmacias@education.ucsb.edu

Macias, Meghan
Meghan is a first year doctoral student working with Dr. Julie Bianchini. She received B.A.'s in Education Sciences and Psychology & Social Behavior with a minor in Gender & Sexuality Studies in 2016 from the University of California, Irvine. Her research interests include educational equity and critical pedagogy in preschool settings, persistence and retention in the sciences, and teacher professional development. Currently, she is a part of the MOXI Apprenticeship Program at the Wolf Museum of Exploration and Innovation. Meghan can be reached at meghanmacias@ucsb.edu

McBeath, Jasmine
Jasmine McBeath is a doctoral candidate with an emphasis in Learning, Culture, and Technology. Jasmine majored in Spanish and Ecology in undergrad at the University of Arizona. After college, she spent a year teaching English to indigenous leaders in Manaus, Brazil on a Fulbright Scholarship. Since then, she has enjoyed working for nonprofit organizations in California and New Mexico as a teacher, community organizer, and case manager. Currently, she leads a makerspace program at a local teen center integrating science, technology, and art into social action projects. She is also the coordinator of the Curie-osity Project where 4-6th grade girls learn about science through researching, interviewing, and writing a book about female scientists at UCSB. Jasmine is interested in afterschool programs that broaden the definition of science, and is passionate about getting more girls to participate in and contribute to STEM fields. https://ucsb.academia.edu/JasmineKyleMcBeath

McLean, Mandy  
Mandy McLean is currently finishing up her doctoral studies at UCSB in STEM Education, with an emphasis in quantitative methods in social sciences. Her current research focuses on gender equity in engineering and her background spans mechanical engineering, earth science, and high school teaching. Mandy can be reached at amclean@ucsb.edu.

 

Meier, Valerie
Valerie Meier is an Education doctoral student working with Dr. Jin Sook Lee. She holds a BA and BFA from Tufts University, an MA in Composition from San Francisco State University, and an MA in Second Language Studies from the University of Hawaiʻi at Manoa. In addition to having taught a wide range of reading and writing classes at US universities, she has also taught English in Japan and Laos. Her research interests broadly include academic literacies, second language acquisition, and language-in-education policies; her current focus is on better understanding how teachers can capitalize on their students’ bilingual resources in order to promote the acquisition of academic literacies in one or more languages. You can contact Valerie at vmeier@education.ucsb.edu.

Mottus, Lindsey (Siksika Nation, Alberta, Canada)

Lindsey is a third-year doctoral student in the Department of Education specializing in Culture and Development. Lindsey's research interests lie within Language and Literacy. She attained her Bachelor's Degree in Art History with a minor in Education. At UCSB, Lindsey is a literacy tutor at the McEnroe Reading Clinic, working with students from Kindergarten to Grade 7. Under the advisement of Dr. Diana Arya, she is researching the processes of language revitalization amongst the North American Indigenous Groups, and how they maintain their cultural identity within today's mainstream society. You can contact Lindsey at lrmottus@ucsb.edu.

Muller, Ali
Ali is a first-year doctoral student working with Dr. Danielle Harlow. She received her B.S. in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from the University of Arizona in 2017. She has worked with informal science institutions for the past 9 years, including The Chandler Museum, Tucson Children's Museum and Biosphere 2. Currently, her research interests are facilitator, curriculum and exhibit development within informal science environments, specifically focusing on aquariums. She would love to receive emails at almuller@education.ucsb.edu.

Nazaryan, Sos
Sos Nazaryan is a second year student in the MA/PhD program interested in afterschool programs, digital storytelling, curriculum design, and design based research. He works closely with mentor and advisor Dr. Betsy Brenner to make an impact at the local level through Club Proteo, an afterschool program he has coordinated since 2014 (and been a part of since 2012) that serves over one hundred local elementary students. He is also currently the Teaching Assistant for an undergraduate course in the Department of Education. His goal is to bridge the gap between research and practice to help create learning environments that keep students engaged and equipped with the skills necessary for a bright future. He received his B.A. in Sociology from UCSB in 2014 and explored parent involvement in two-way dual language immersion programs as part of his undergraduate honors thesis. You can contact Sos at sosnazaryan@ucsb.edu.

Nguyen, Dana
Dana Nguyen is a doctoral student in the Special Education, Disabilities and Risk Studies program working under Dr. Mian Wang. She received her B.A. from University of California, San Diego in 2007 where she studied Psychology and was involved in research at the Autism Clinic.  She continued work in the field of autism as an applied behavior analyst before starting her doctoral program here at University of California, Santa Barbara in 2012. Currently, she is interested in studying disability through a family systems approach and looking into parent training and resources available for families, especially those from culturally diverse backgrounds.  Emails are welcome at dnguyen@education.ucsb.edu

Ozuna, Christopher
Christopher is a second-year doctoral student in the Education Policy Group, working with Dr. Michael Gottfried. He earned his B.S. in Human Development from UC Davis and his M.S. in Educational Psychology from UW Madison. Chris' research interests include studying the impacts of community resources and policies on students and schools using mainly quantitative methods. He is currently working on projects involving transportation and attendance, the availabllity of school-based health centers, as well as teacher education through the CTERIN group. Before coming to UCSB, he taught 4th and 5th grade for the Madison Metro School District in Wisconsin, where he became interested in social justice and restorative practices in an elementary context, as well as in educational technology. Get in touch with Chris at cmsalem@ucsb.edu or via his website: http://christopher.ozuna.me.

Pacheco, Fabian
Fabian Pacheco is a third year doctoral student. As an alumnus of the University of California Los Angeles, he graduated with departmental honors in Chicana/o Studies and Sociology, and is currently working under the guidance of Professor Mireles-Rios. Fabian is a strong advocate for ethnic studies both in the K-12 and college-level setting. He enjoys being actively involved in his community of Boyle Heights as a mentor and coach. For his MA thesis, he is looking at the racial socialization practices Latino parents engage with their children during a time of anti-immigrant sentiment. Additional research interest include, but are not limited to, access to higher education, creating a college going culture, and examining various aspects of student experiences that impact their educational attainment and pursuit. Currently, he is a teaching assistance in the Department of Black Studies and can be widely reached at fpacheco@education.ucsb.edu.

Pal, Hui-Ju 
Hui-Ju is a doctoral candidate with an emphasis in Cultural Perspectives and Comparative Education and after-school tutoring program under Dr. Hsiu-Zu Ho. She received a B.S. in Music as well as a Teacher Certificate in primary school level from National Sun Yat-sen University, Taiwan, and a M.S. in Curriculum and Instruction from Kansas State University. Prior to joining the program at UCSB, she worked for a nonprofit organization which provides an after after-school tutoring program to primary and junior high school students with low socioeconomic status and indigenous students in remote regions. Recently she is undertaking her dissertation research aiming to explore how a community-based after-school tutoring program executed by the primary and middle schools of two Taiwanese indigenous Atayal tribes practicing family-school-community partnerships. Hui-Ju may be reached at: huiju@ucsb.edu.

Penner, Kaitlynn
Kaitlynn is a second year doctoral student with an emphasis in Special Education, Disability, and Risk studies. Her faculty advisor is Dr. George Singer. She earned a B.S. in Special Education from South Carolina State University in 2014 and a M.S. in Special Education with an emphasis in Autism Spectrum Disorders from Florida International University in 2016. She is a clinician at the Koegel Autism Center, where she works with individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder and their families in teaching them the strategies of Pivotal Response Treatment (PRT) and other evidence based practices.  Her interests include improving the cultural relevance of interventions for children with Autism Spectrum Disorders, specifically in the area of parent education and treatment acceptability for underserved populations. Kaitlynn can be reached at kpenner@ucsb.edu.

Poyser, Samantha
Samantha Poyser is a third-year student with an emphasis in Special Education, Disabilities, and Risk Studies. Her faculty advisors are Dr. Robert Koegel and Dr. Ty Vernon. After receiving her B.A. in Psychology and Anthropology from the University of California, Santa Barbara in 2015, she worked as a Program Coordinator for the Boys & Girls Club before returning to UCSB for her doctorate. She is a clinician at the Koegel Autism Center, where she provides evidence-based treatments to children and adults on the Autism Spectrum. Her research interests include academic motivation for children with disabilities, as well as collaborating with stakeholders in education to create more inclusive educational and community settings for students with disabilities. Samantha can be reached at Spoyser@ucsb.edu.

Pulgar, Javier
I’m Javier Pulgar (jpulgar@education.ucsb.edu) a third year grad student in Science Education, with emphasis on physics education. My advisor is Dr. Danielle Harlow. Currently I’m working in my second year research project, which consists in studying collective creativity and problem solving. The purpose is to develop a model that allows us to understand how effective and original groups might be in creating/designing solutions to particular problems in physics. Additionally, I’m interesting in developing instruments to measure individual divergent thinking in the context of physics problem solving, and the dimensions that this may involve. Due to my experience teaching physics in a Chilean university (Universidad del Bio Bio, in Concepcion, where I come from), my research interests are oriented towards college students.

Sanosa, David
David Sañosa is a doctoral student emphasizing in Learning, Culture, and Technology under the advisory of Dr. Richard Durán and is broadly interested in the research and development of technology-based learning environments and strategies. He received his B.S. in Biopsychology from the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences at UCSB where he assisted investigations in the use of virtual models for chemistry education. He has also worked as a research assistant on validity studies for NAEP digitally based science assessments and as a developer at a virtual reality software company located in downtown Santa Barbara. He currently assists makerspace activities at a local teen center where he has worked with youth in constructing creative projects using digital and electronic platforms such as Scratch and Arduino. His current research interests focus on the use of technology to engage youth in processes such as computer programming and digital music production (and by sheer coincidence, he enjoys these activities in his personal time). In addition, he is currently developing an application for Scratch-like visual programming within an immersive virtual reality environment. Email: dsanosa@education.ucsb.edu

Serrano-Gutierrez, Gabby
Gabby is a third year doctoral student with an emphasis in Culture and Development. Her advisor is Dr. Laura Romo. Gabby received her B.A. from UC Santa Barbara in Chicana/o Studies with a minor in Education. Her current research focuses on how Latina and Latino college students compare in their perception of being first-generation in the context of their academic and social experiences. She is also interested in fostering Latina high school students’ motivation and interest to pursue STEM in college. Gabby can be reached at: ggutierrezserrano@ucsb.edu

 

Solis, Bertin
Bertin Solis is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Education at UC Santa Barbara with an emphasis in Culture and Development. He earned a BA in Sociology and an M.A. in Education from UC Santa Barbara. His doctoral research investigates how community college Latinx students develop aspirations for college and careers and how they experience the transition to a 4-year public research university. He employs a sociocultural perspective to understand how cultural resources, values, relationships, and challenges operating in students' lives support or hinder their educational progress. Bertin is also interested in the following research areas: academic achievement and motivation, higher education access and completion of historically underrepresented students, mentoring practices, critical pedagogy, and the civic engagement and literacy practices of immigrant populations. Bertin can be reached at: bertin@ucsb.edu

Sperling, Jenny
Jenny Sperling is a third-year doctoral student with an emphasis in literacies, languages, and cultures working with Dr. Diana Arya. She received her B.A. in Spanish and Comparative literature from our beautiful community campus here at UCSB in 2011. After graduation, she spent her time coaching women's high school basketball and working in a restaurant, ultimately working toward saving money for her future graduate studies. In 2013 she attended Berkeley, where she received her M.A. in Education, focusing on the cultural studies of sport in education. Currently, her research explores both students' and teachers' language and literacy practices, both inside and outside of classroom settings. Her areas of interest include discourse analysis, interactional ethnography, sociocultural linguistics, and  critical/reality pedagogy and literacies. She welcomes your emails always at: jsperling@education.ucsb.edu

Spina Deidre, Alexis
Alexis Deidre Spina  is a third year doctoral student with an emphasis in Math Education and is working with Dr. Sarah Roberts. She received her B.A. in Physics Education from the University of Delaware in 2007, and her M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction in Secondary Science Education from the University of Delaware in 2009. Prior to starting her PhD, Alexis taught high school math and science for ten years. Currently, her research interests are professional development for in-service mathematics teachers and preparing pre-service mathematics teachers. Alexis is a member or our GSAE, a CTERIN fellow, and teaches with our TEP program. You can reach her at adspina@education.ucsb.edu

Tanous, Chelsea
Chelsea Tanous is a fourth-year doctoral student with an interdisciplinary emphasis in Language, Interaction, and Social Organization (LISO) working with Dr. Amy Kyratzis. Chelsea received her B.A. in French and Spanish at the University of Southern Mississippi in 2011, after which she spent one year working as an interpreter and translator while teaching a high school French independent study course. She received her M.A. in French and Applied Linguistics from the University of Alabama in 2014, where her thesis research project explored the communicative strategies of undergraduate and graduate students of French in classroom and informal contexts. Her current research focuses on issues in second language learning, including language socialization, intercultural communication, issues of culture and community, and the negotiation of identity in interaction. Chelsea currently teaches French language courses through the Department of French and Italian at UCSB and works as an instructor in the McEnroe Reading and Language Arts Clinic. She can be reached at ctanous@education.ucsb.edu. To review Chelsea’s current research and teaching projects, please visit her website at: https://chelseatanous.com/

Valdez, Valerie
Valerie is a doctoral student in the Department of Education, with an emphasis in Teacher Education and Professional Development. Her advisor is Dr. Julie Bianchini. Valerie received her B.A. in Sociology from the University of California Berkeley, and her M.A. in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of the Pacific. Her research interests include teacher preparation program evaluation and the effects of practice-based professional development for pre-service teachers. Valerie is also interested in the development of rapport between teacher and students and its role in creating an inclusive learning environment, as well as its effects on student achievement. Prior to attending UC Santa Barbara, Valerie worked as a second and third grade teacher in Sacramento and as clinical faculty with Alder Graduate School of Education. Valerie is currently teaching a literacy course in the teacher preparation program at Antioch University Santa Barbara. She can be reached at valerievaldez@ucsb.edu.

Wang, Tiange
Tiange Wang Tiange Wang is a doctoral candidate in Education, working with Dr. Jin Sook Lee, and she is enrolled in the Applied Linguistics interdisciplinary emphasis. She earned her B.A. degree in English Language and Literature and an M.A. degree in Linguistics from Beijing Normal University, China. She started her doctoral studies in the year of 2013 and her research interests include bilingualism, heritage language maintenance and second language acquisition. Her current research project examines the curriculum and its implementation in a Chinese-English Dual Language Immersion school. Tiange may be reached at: twang@education.ucsb.edu.

Wolf, Melissa
Melissa Gordon Wolf is a doctoral student focusing on quantitative research methods under the guidance of Dr. Andrew Maul. Her primary focus is on the measurement of ontologically subjective attributes and the validity of the scales designed to assess them. Methodologically, she is interested in latent variable and psychometric analyses (SEM, mixtures, IRT), atypical approaches to measurement (such as network analysis), and research design. She is currently working on projects related to invalid and deceptive responses on surveys, the nature of constructs (kinds vs continua), cut scores, and evidence for validity based on the response process. When Melissa isn't doing research, she can typically be found at Dog Beach (a beautiful, off-leash Santa Barbara beach full of puppies - it is as wonderful as it sounds). She can be reached at mgordon@education.ucsb.edu.

Yang, Rong
Rong Yang is a doctoral student with an emphasis in Teaching and Learning. Her advisor is Dr. Dorothy M. Chun. She received her B. A. and M.A. in English Language and Literature from Sun Yat-sen University in P.R.C. Her research interests include: Second/foreign language teaching and learning, technology and language education, and cross-cultural communications. She is currently working on an online intercultural exchange project between language learners. ryang@education.ucsb.edu

Yu, Jing
Jing Yu is a third-year doctoral student in Department of Education with an interdisciplinary emphasis in Applied Linguistics advised by Dr. Diana Arya. She received M.A. in TESOL from the Ohio State University in 2015. Her research interests include: second language socialization, academic discourse socialization as well as ‘third space theory’ in intercultural communication. She majorly looks at the languaculture socialization of international Chinese undergraduates within the US higher education, including academic challenges, social interaction and cultural adjustment. Specifically, she focuses primarily on how social identities and cultural practices are brought into being through students’ linguistic interaction in the classroom. Ethnographic methodology has been adopted to investigate what cultural knowledge and practices may support or challenge Chinese international students’ experiences during their process of adaptation in a new learning milieu. She can be reached at jyu@education.ucsb.edu.