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Notable Faculty & Staff Accomplishments


  • Dr. Sarah Irvine Belson, Executive Director of the Institute for Innovation in Education, was awarded $127,000 from the Benedict Silverman Foundation for the initial implementation of a tutoring program utilizing Reading Rescue and Reading Ready. Dr. Belson and her team have secured funding from the DC Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE), which covers a large portion of the research budget. [November 17, 2022]
  • Assistant Professor Dr. Emily Grossnickle Peterson was identified by Educational Psychology Review as one of the most productive early career scholars in an analysis of publishing trends in educational psychology journals. The study, "Individual and Institutional Productivity in Educational Psychology Journals from 2015-2021,” ranked the articles scholars published in the top five educational psychology journals. [November 17, 2022]
  • More than $1.3M was awarded from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to AU’s Dr. Shari Earnest Watkins and Dr. Brian L. McGowan, Associate Professor, as part of the Collaborative Research-Racial Equity project (CRRE) to examine undergraduate Black students’ postsecondary STEM experiences. [October 14, 2022]
  • Professor Dr. Cynthia Miller-Idriss presented at the United We Stand summit at the White House. Read a Q&A with her, and watch the recording. [September 21, 2022]
  • Dr. Ocheze Joseph, Director of Undergraduate Teacher Education and Senior Professorial Lecturer, was named a 2022-23 Institute for Teachers of Color Committed to Racial Justice (ITOC) Fellow. [June 27, 2022]

Publications & Presentations

  • Senior Professorial Lecturer Dr. Eugene Pringle published two book chapters: "Leveraging the Mentorship Experiences of Black Males with Doctoral Degrees" in Best Practices and Programmatic Approaches for Mentoring Educational Leaders and "Foundations of a Resilience Model Pipeline for Black Male Well-Being and Leadership Principles" in The Future of Black Leadership in Higher Education: Firsthand Experiences and Global Impact. [January 18, 2023]
  • Senior Professorial Lecturer Dr. Phelton Moss wrote for the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD) about how Black boys express their personality and character through their sneakers. Read his article here. [January 18, 2023]
  • Check out the Noodle podcast "The Most Interesting People in Higher Ed" (Episode 19) featuring SOE Dean Dr. Cheryl Holcomb-McCoy here. [January 18, 2023]
  • Virginia Public Media, the Richmond National Public Radio affiliate, interviewed and quoted Assistant Professor Dr. Robert D. Shand about the proposed Education Savings Account policy in Virginia. Read the story here. [January 18, 2023]
  • SOE is the first AU school to have a land acknowledgment statement, which made news in this District article about the university's Indigenous inclusion, where Dean Cheryl Holcomb-McCoy was quoted. [January 18, 2023]
  • SOE is the first AU school to have a land acknowledgement statement, which made news in this District article about AU’s Indigenous inclusion, where Dean Cheryl Holcomb-McCoy was quoted. [December 15, 2022] 

  • Associate Dean Dr. Corbin Campbell was an invited panelist at the Boyer 2030 Commission National Conference, sponsored by the Association for Undergraduate Education at Research Universities. The convening brings together higher education scholars and leaders from across the US to discuss issues related to the support of college teaching, learning, and equity. In this presentation, she talked about her forthcoming book (Harvard Education Press, 2023), Great College Teaching: Where it Happens and How to Foster it Everywhere. [December 15, 2022] 

  • Dr. Phelton Cortez Moss, Education Policy Advisor in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senior Professorial Lecturer of Education Policy and Leadership, convened an education brain trust to make recommendations for Congress’s Commission on the Social Status of Black Men and Boys. The commission recommends policies to improve upon, or augment, current government programs, and is chaired by Congress member Frederica Wilson. [December 15, 2022]

  • Director of the Education Policy and Leadership Program and Senior Professorial Lecturer Dr. Reuben Jacobson was a panelist for the talk, "Community Schools: A Model Locally, a Model Nationally," at the Jefferson Educational Society Global Summit in Erie, PA. He also served as moderator for the panel discussion, “How District Leaders Start and Sustain Community Schools,” hosted by Brookings. [December 15, 2022]

  • Faculty member Lynne Brenner Ganek was highlighted in this story about actor LeVar Burton’s lifetime achievement Emmy award. She was a creator of Reading Rainbow, which first aired on PBS in 1983 with Burton as host. [December 15, 2022]

  • Urban Teachers, a national teacher residency program and partner with the SOE, was highlighted in media across the county this month. In the Philadelphia Citizen, and on Baltimore-based WBAL television, Urban Teachers was featured as a robust, qualified teacher pipeline in cities with an urgent need for more teachers. [December 15, 2022]

  • Dr. Samantha Cohen, Executive Director of EdD Program and Senior Professorial Lecturer, was quoted on how successful teachers engage their students regardless of the modality - online or in person, in this article. [December 15, 2022]

  • Senior Professorial Lecturer Dr. Amaarah DeCuir published the article "Public Memory Generates Disinformation on 9/11 in Public Schools," in the American Association of University Professors' (AAUP) Journal of Academic Freedom. [December 15, 2022]

  • Associate Professor Dr. Jennifer Steele began serving as an Associate Editor of the American Educational Research Journal (AERJ). With a 5-year Impact Factor of 6.246, AERJ is a flagship journal of the American Educational Research Association, publishing articles that advance the empirical, theoretical, and methodological understanding of education and learning. [November 20, 2022]
  • Senior Professorial Lecturer Dr. Altheria Caldera published an editorial in Education Week about how LA City Council Member Nury Martinez's words on the leaked recording reflects the ways Black boys are pathologized by institutions. [November 17, 2022]
  • Dr. Amaarah DeCuir - Senior Professorial Lecturer, CTRL Senior Inclusive Pedagogy Fellow, and AUx Faculty Fellow - was invited by the Australian Curriculum Studies Association to be on a panel of international scholars to discuss the policies and practices common in American public schools to advance equity for religious-marginalized students. Watch a video recording of the talk, "Religious Responsivity." [November 17, 2022]
  • Professorial Lecturer Dr. Rebecca Lubin presented research at the International Conference on Urban Education's 2022 Conference, "Speaking Truth to Power: Sustaining Excellence in Urban Realities," a solutions-based biennial global event. [November 17, 2022]
  • Professor Dr. Vivian Vasquez co-authored her latest book, "Critical Comprehension: Guiding Students to Deeper Meaning," which is in pre-release (available Feb. 2023). It focuses on working with K-6 students to help them think through multiple perspectives, explore diverse texts, and use the power of story to develop life skills to discuss vast topics with critical curiosity. [November 17, 2022]
  • Faculty members Dr. Samantha Cohen and Dr. William N. Thomas IV presented "Supporting Educational Leaders in Creating an Equity-centered Culture of Continuous Improvement" at the University Council for Educational Administration's (UCEA) UCEA22 conference. [Nov. 17-20, 2022]. 
  • Drs. Tomiko Ball and Samantha Cohen presented at the CPED Conference on the topic: Creating Learning Environments within EdD Programs that Foster Antiracist Scholar Practitioner Communities. [October 13, 2022] 
  • Dr. Robert Shand, Assistant Professor, published a paper in the American Journal of Evaluation titled "Program Value-Added: A Feasible Method for Providing Evidence on the Effectiveness of Multiple Programs Implemented Simultaneously in Schools." [September 20, 2022]
  • Scholar-in-Residence Dr. Andre Perry, a Senior Fellow at Brookings, published the Valuing Black Assets Initiative (VBAI), which seeks to mobilize a new generation of leaders to invest in the assets critical to wealth creation and economic growth in Black communities. The work indexes assets and opportunities Black people have in critical quality of life areas – health, housing, business, employment, and education. [September 19, 2022]
  • Dr. Jennifer Steele, Associate Professor, was interviewed on CGTN about expanding who can teach, and the potential to send students to school four-days-a-week. [September 8, 2022]
  • Dr. Olatokunbo (Toks) Fashola, Research Professor in Residence, was one of three STATA Scientific Council members coordinating the STATA Conference in Washington, DC. [August 2, 2022]
  • Scholar-In-Residence Dr. Andre M. Perry spoke to CNBC about how student debt disproportionately impacts the Black community. [August 29, 2022]
  • Scholar-In-Residence Dr. Andre M. Perry wrote an article about the cancelation of student debt being a great first step toward solving borrowers’ problems. [August 25, 2022] 
  • Dr. Samantha Cohen, Executive Director of EdD Program and Senior Professorial Lecturer, published a review of the book “The Improvement Science Dissertation in Practice” in “Impacting Education: Journal on Transforming Professional Practice.” [August 12, 2022] 
  • Dr. Brian McGowan, Associate Professor, was quoted in the Chronicle of Higher Education today about DEI competencies in promotion and tenure processes. [August 12, 2022] 
  • Dr. Reuben Jacobson, Director of the Education Policy and Leadership Program, and Senior Professorial Lecturer, wrote a blog post on the Brookings website and is working to create a toolkit for schools interested in starting a community schools initiative. [August 9, 2022] 
  • Dr. William N. Thomas IV, Professorial Lecturer, presented on "Flux Pedagogy" at the inaugural Social Emotional Learning (SEL) Summer Institute at Harvard University. [August 5, 2022]
  • Dean Cheryl Holcomb-McCoy published this piece on the need to increase the number of mental health counselors in schools in District Administration. [July 29, 2022]
  • Q&A about school quality with faculty member Dr. kecia hayes appeared on [July 25, 2022]

Other Impactful News

  • Scholar-in-Residence and Director of the Summer Institute for Education Equity and Justice (SIEEJ), Dr. Antonio Ellis was elected chair-designate of the Exemplary Contributions to Practice-Engaged Research Award Committee within the American Educational Research Association (AERA). [November 17, 2022]
  • Instructor Annie Murphy Karabell, Director Danielle Gervais Sodani, and Professor Dr. Sarah Irvine Belson, members of the Institute for Innovation in Education, are doing a year-long course for the District of Columbia Public School principals called the Science of Reading for School Leaders. It is part of a larger project where SOE has worked with 27 DCPS schools over the last three years. [December 15, 2022]

Career Transitions

  • Dr. William Thomas was appointed to a new role as AUx Faculty Fellow. [August 24, 2022]
  • President Biden appointed Elizabeth Ryan, Adjunct Instructor in SOE, to be the new Administrator of OJP’s Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. Ryan is president of Youth First, leading the shift from incarceration to community-based services and resulting in the closing of youth prisons in 6 states. [May 4, 2022]