Three graduate students awarded 2020-2021 Dorman Commons Fellowships

Monday, May 3, 2021
Destiny Hoerberg, Donald McNish, and Darby McIllroy

The 2020-21 Dorman Commons Fellows (l-r): Destiny Hoerberg, Donald McNish, and Darby McIllroy

Destiny Hoerberg, Darby C. McIllroy, and Donald McNish were awarded 2020-2021 Dorman Commons Fellowships. This fund was established by Dorman L. Commons, who spent eight years on the State Board of Education and three years as the Chairman of the California Commission on the Teaching Profession. It is used to support fellowships for students who are classroom teachers or professional educators returning to work on advanced degrees.

Destiny Hoerberg is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Education in the Special Education, Developmental, and Risk Studies research area. 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/caregiver education and interaction with children with disabilities by further developing and improving current evidence-based therapeutic intervention practices.

Darby McIllroy is a Teacher Education Program student pursuing a Master’s in Education and an Education Specialist Credential with an emphasis in Mild/Moderate Disabilities. After she has completed her Mild/Moderate program, Darby plans to become a Resource Teacher at an elementary school in the area.

Donald McNish is a first year Ph.D. student in the Department of Education with an emphasis in STEM education. His particular areas of interest are related to how teachers and students work collaboratively in the digital environment and how changes to education technology shape students' experiences in science class, particularly students from traditionally underserved communities. He is also interested in teacher education and the changes to professional training and development within science education in the 21st century.

[The fellows are available for interviews; contact George Yatchisin at]