President Heather Bennett
Treasurer Rafael Alvarado
Secretary Kendra Taylor
Rafael Alvarado is pursuing a joint JD/PhD degree in Law and Higher Education through a partnership between Penn State Law and the Department of Education Policy Studies in the College of Education. Prior to coming to Penn State, Rafael received a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Washington University in St. Louis, MO, and an MS in Student Affairs in Higher Education from Miami University in Oxford, OH. Rafael’s current research interests focus on the use of educational research in public policymaking. Contact Rafael at email@example.com.
Kendra Taylor is a PhD student in Educational Leadership at Penn State. Her interests focus on school segregation, restorative justice in schools and the school to prison pipeline. Before pursuing her PhD, Kendra received her M.Ed. in Applied Youth, Family and Community Education at Penn State where she conducted research on peace education in Morocco. Contact Kendra at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Heather Nicole Bennett received a B.A in Political Science at The Pennsylvania State University. After graduation, she joined the Atlanta Corps of Teach for America, and served for two years as a High School Social Studies teacher for Fulton County Public Schools in Georgia. Heather then returned to Penn State to attend the Dickinson School of Law, where she graduated with a Juris Doctor of Law. Heather also has a license to practice law in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the state of New Jersey. Currently, Heather is a third year Ph.D. candidate in the Education Leadership program in the College of Education at the Pennsylvania State University. Contact Heather at email@example.com.
Kristina Brezicha is a dual-title doctoral candidate at The Pennsylvania State University in Educational Theory and Policy and Comparative International Education program. Her research focuses on immigrant students’ political socialization, student voice, school reforms and improvement including leadership development and teacher quality. Through PEEP, she is researching how school districts make sense of and respond to the demographic changes in new immigrant destinations. Prior to beginning her doctoral program, she taught elementary special education students in New York City. She holds two Master degrees, one in Politics and Education from Teachers College, Columbia University and the second in Urban Education from Mercy College. Contact Kristina at firstname.lastname@example.org
Jennifer Lynn Corra is a Ph. D. candidate in Rural Sociology focusing on rural studies, stratification, emerging adulthood, and survey research methodology. She has worked on projects looking at youth educational, occupational, and residential aspirations, satisfaction, and preferences. Her dissertation will examine the processes used by rural youth as they make decisions regarding their post-secondary aspirations, whether or not place influences these decisions, and if so, how.
Alex Collopy is a PhD student in Curriculum & Instruction in Early Childhood Education and Comparative & International Education at Pennsylvania State University. She currently serves as President of the Disability Studies Student Group. Alex is particularly interested in cross-cultural understandings of inclusive education for deaf and disabled children.
Emily Hodge is a PhD candidate in the Educational Theory and Policy program at Penn State. Her research focuses on changing strategies for educational equity, including desegregation, detracking, and standards-based reform. Hodge was previously a middle school Language Arts teacher in the Pittsburgh area and is currently a managing editor of the American Journal of Education. Contact Emily at email@example.com
Stephen Kotok is a Ph.D. Candidate in Education, Theory, and Policy with a Minor in Demography. He holds an M.A. in Politics and Education from Teachers College, Columbia University, an M.A. in Secondary Education from the University of Pennsylvania, and a BA in History and Political Science from the University of Wisconsin. Stephen’s research interests include charter schools, school climate, and the relationship between social stratification, racial segregation, and k-12 education. He has worked as a Middle School Team Leader at the Hope Academy Charter School in Asbury Park, NJ, as a Social Studies Teacher at the Camelot Schools in Philadelphia, and as a Literacy Specialist for AmeriCorps in St. Louis. Contact Stephen at firstname.lastname@example.org
Jing Liu is a dual title doctoral candidate in Educational Leadership and Comparative and International Education at Penn State University. She is interested in principal evaluation, teacher leadership and collegiality, education equity, and education and health. She is the Editor of Beacon, a peer-reviewed journal belongs to the Pennsylvania School Study Council. In addition, she is a current member at American Journal of Education Student Board. Contact Jing at email@example.com
Hilario Lomeli Jr. is a PhD student in Language, Culture, Society Program in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction in the College of Education at Penn State. He holds a B.A. in Government, a Minor in Mexican American Studies from the University of Texas in Austin. His research interests include Educational Anthropology, Video Ethnography, Feminist theory, Identity theory, and Latina/o education policy. Hilario’s research projects include Graduate Research Assistant positions in ethnographic research examining the implementation of a Literacy through Photography curriculum in central PA and in video ethnographic research examining the cultural dynamics of a pre-school in State College, PA as well as the Pennsylvania Equity Project where he is examining educational equity in Hazleton, PA. Contact Hilario at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Erica Lopatofsky Kryst is a PhD candidate in Educational Theory and Policy at Penn State University. She also holds a Master of Science in Education in College Student Personnel from Bucknell University. For the past several years she has worked as a Student Affairs practitioner at The University of New Hampshire, and currently she works as a Career Counselor at Penn State. Her research interests include the educational trajectories of rural youth, youth educational outcomes in post-socialist Eastern Europe, rural identity in the United Stated and abroad, and equity in access to higher education. Contact Erica at email@example.com
Wideline Seraphin is a 3rd year doctoral candidate from Miami, Florida studying Language, Culture and Society within the department of Curriculum and Instruction. She has worked as a out of school literacy instructor and school teacher for five years. She also holds an MA in African American and African Diaspora Studies from Indiana University, Bloomington. As a new PEEP member, Wideline is interested in studying the schooling experiences of immigrant students of color and the curricular responses of schools to these students in Pennsylvania.
Alison Tyler is a doctoral candidate in Education Theory and Policy at Penn State University. Her research interests focus on discipline, segregation, and other equity concerns. Prior to coming to Penn State, Alison received a B.A. in Informal Science Education from Juniata College in Huntingdon, PA and worked as a Traveling Science Educator at The Franklin Institute in Philadelphia, PA. Contact Alison at firstname.lastname@example.org
Stephen Worthington is pursuing a joint JD/MA degree in Law and Educational Theory & Policy at Penn State. He blogs on educational equity in Pennsylvania for “The Forum,” Penn State Law Review’s legal blog. Stephen holds a B.S. degree in secondary education (social studies) from Utah State University. His current research focuses on racial disparities in school discipline. Contact Stephen at email@example.com
Devin Carpenter received a B.A. in Anthropology from the University of Montana. Upon gradation, he began as an admissions counselor there, and continued in that role for three years. Devin recently moved to State College to begin his Masters degree in Higher Education with an emphasis in Student Affairs at Penn State, where he also works as the Graduate Assistant for the Parents Program. While Devin is new to graduate school, he is interested in research regarding equity in education, particularly for LGBT and Queer students. Contact Devin at firstname.lastname@example.org
Chi Nguyen is a PhD student in Educational Leadership and Comparative & International Education at the Pennsylvania State University (Penn State). She earned an M.S.Ed degree in Education, Culture, and Society at the University of Pennsylvania (UPenn) and a B.A. degree in International Studies at Hanoi University, Vietnam. Prior to graduate school, Chi worked as an academic coordinator for an international undergraduate program at the Vietnam National University. She also co-founded a non-profit organization in Vietnam that supports comprehensive youth development. Her research focuses on equity and access to higher education for socioeconomic disadvantaged and minority students. Contact her at email@example.com
Anke Li is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Education Policy Studies and the Educational Theory and Policy program. Her research interests focus on the educational experiences of Chinese undergraduate students in both U.S. and China, and the educational experiences of students with disabilities. Currently she is researching the role played by social background in Chinese and Taiwanese students’ access to overseas higher education. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org
May Lee is a PhD student in Educational Leadership at Penn State. Her research focuses on how educational equity is facilitated at intersection of the policy, school leadership and instruction. Before pursuing her PhD, May received her M.Ed. in Elementary Education and served as an elementary and English as A Second Language teacher in Philadelphia. Contact her at email@example.com
Jeremy Anderson is a PhD student in the Education Theory and Policy program at Penn State University. He holds a Master of Arts in Teaching from the University of Pittsburgh. Jeremy is a former high school social studies teacher whose interests include education policymaking and equity and technology in education. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org
Lorraine A. Jones is a graduate student studying Higher Education and Comparative International Education. She earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Human Development and Family Studies. She has an extensive background in working with and advocating for underrepresented youth and families. Her research interests are in college access and education equity for students of color and first generation low-income students. She has worked as a Legislative Assistant for several years for Pennsylvania’s House of Representatives and worked on original legislation on behalf of underprivileged constituents. She has also co-lead adolescent multi-cultural groups that have enhanced cross-cultural communication. She has managed an international house on Pennsylvania State University campus for visiting scholars, graduate students and professors. She currently works as a graduate assistant in the College of Education Multicultural Programs office at Pennsylvania State University where she provides mentorship and cultural support for students experiencing challenges transitioning to higher education. She also organizes and designs social and educational programs/activities for underrepresented undergraduate and graduate students to meet college diversity goals and objectives. Ms. Jones also serves on Pennsylvania Education Equity Project (PEEP) and American Journal of Education (AJE) at Pennsylvania State University.
Tiffanie Lewis is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Leadership, Foundations, and Human Resource Education at the University of Louisville. She holds a doctorate in Education Theory and Policy, and a BA in Psychology and Journalism, both from Penn State. Her research interests include Urban School Reform, Educational Policy, School/District Leadership, Educational Equity, and Youth Development. Contact Tiffanie at email@example.com
Steven L. Nelson is a doctoral candidate in the Education Policy Studies Department at Penn State University. He is enrolled in the Educational Leadership Program, where he focuses on issues pertaining to education law, policy and politics. Prior to enrolling at Penn State, Steven worked as an education advocate with the Southern Poverty Law Center. He also worked for several years as a classroom teacher in traditional public schools, public charter schools and private schools in the New Orleans Metro Area. He holds degrees in law from the University of Iowa, teaching from Xavier University of Louisiana and political science from Louisiana State University. Steven’s research foci include the impact of school choice paradigms on historically disadvantaged groups, the democratic process as it plays out in public charter schools, the school-to-prison pipeline and (re)segregation of public schools. He has published with several professors in a variety of publications, including education-based journals, law reviews and book chapters. Steven has also presented his work at national conferences including the American Educational Research Association, the Education Law Association and the University Council for Educational Administration. Upon receiving his doctoral degree, Steven intends to pursue a career researching and teaching at the collegiate level. Contact Steven at firstname.lastname@example.org.
is a postdoctoral research associate in the Department of Statistics at Texas A&M University. She holds a doctorate in Educational Theory and Policy from Pennsylvania State University with a concentration in Demography. Her research interests include the schooling and academic achievement of minority and immigrant children and segregation in public schools. Currently, she is working on two projects dealing with the relationship between student grades, standardized test scores, and college completion as well as the relationship between student evaluations of teaching and student learning. Contact Katherine at email@example.com