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Fall 2014 News

Aztec Science Camp Makes Science Fun!

Aztec Science Camp

This summer San Diego State University offered its first ever science camp for children ages 6 to 11. The three-week camp not only offered hands-on learning for kids, but gave the SDSU science and engineering majors who led the camp the opportunity to try out teaching science.

The Aztec Science Camp is actually a pilot in hopeful anticipation of the Noyce Track 1 Grant for School of Teacher Education faculty. The science education team, under the direction of Dr. Lisa Lamb, was recently awarded a National Science Foundation (NSF) award of over $1 million. This grant will support the project, entitled "Supporting Science Teaching: The San Diego State University Noyce Scholars and Interns Program," and is under the direction of Lisa L. Lamb, Donna Ross, David P. Pullman, Kathy S. Williams, and Meredith E. Houle Vaughn.

Aztec Science Camp serves as a cornerstone of the Noyce Track 1 grant, in that camp provides opportunities for many of SDSU's highly qualified science and engineering majors to have opportunities to engage with children learning science, and, we hope, to become passionate about teaching. The project team is grateful to have had the support of the President’s Leadership Fund, the Math/Science Teacher Initiative, the School of Teacher Education, the Center for Research in Mathematics and Science Education (CRMSE), the Center for Teaching Critical Thinking and Creativity, and the faculty in the College of Sciences in order to get this pilot off the ground and running.

Read more about the fun at Aztec Science Camp at SDSU Newscenter.


Trish Hatch and Lauren Owen Represent SDSU at White House Event

Hatch and Owen at Harvard - Story

Story adapted from article at the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

On Monday, July 28, 2014 the Harvard Graduate School of Education, in partnership with the White House’s College Opportunity Agenda, convened leaders in education to discuss strategies to increase access to college for Americans. SDSU Counseling and School Psychology faculty members, Dr. Trish Hatch and Dr. Laura Owen were among the leaders and decision makers who attended the event to discuss how improvements in school counseling and college advising can bring about greater postsecondary opportunities for Americans.

Earlier in the month, at the American School Counselor Association Annual Conference (ASCA), First Lady Michelle Obama told the audience, “School counseling should not be an extra or a luxury just for school systems that can afford it. School counseling is a necessity to ensure that all our young people get the education they need to succeed in today’s economy.”

Dr. Owen participated in a panel titled, “Innovative Programming and Research” where she discussed areas of college-readiness for high school students. These areas included college affordability planning, college and career admission processes and the high school to college transition process. Listen to Dr. Owen’s panel discussion on YouTube.

Dr. Hatch was a featured speaker over the lunch session and inspired the crowd by sharing the exciting commitments that SDSU has made to increase student college-readiness. These commitments, supported by SDSU University President Hirshman and College of Education Dean Johnson, include offering the SDSU campus as a location for a West coast convening of President Obama’s College Opportunity program and First Lady Michelle Obama’s Reach Higher program and developing a new doctoral program with a specialization in School Counseling. Listen to more of Dr. Hatch’s inspiring talk on YouTube.

Read more about the White House event

Exciting COE Leadership Changes and Faculty & Staff Promotions

The College of Education is excited to start the Fall semester with these new faculty and staff changes and promotions:

  • Julie White, former COE Manager of Operations and Support Services has become the COE Manager of Budget and Analysis.
  • Dr. Nancy Farnan will become the Associate Dean of COE.
  • Dr. Audrey Hokoda will become the Department Chair of Child and Family Development.
  • Dr. Doug Fisher will become the Department Chair of Educational Leadership.
  • Dr. Nadine Bezuk will become the Director of the School of Teacher Education.
  • Dr. Ian Pumpian will become the Director of the SDSU Ed.D. (K-12) Program.
  • Dr. J. Luke Wood will become Director of the SDSU Ed.D. (Community College/Postsecondary Education) Program.

Promoted to Full Professor for Fall 2014

  • Dr. Audrey Hokoda
  • Dr. Lisa Lamb

Promoted to Associate Professor for Fall 2014

  • Dr. J. Luke Wood
  • Dr. Meredith Houle Vaughn

COE Faculty & Staff Making a Difference

COE Welcomes Seven New Faculty Hires this Fall

Mark Tucker, ARPE
Mark Tucker, ARPE

Mark Tucker joins the College of Education full-time after spending several years with the Interwork Institute, where he also taught part-time in the ARPE department. Prior to joining the staff at the Interwork Institute, Mark worked as Program Coordinator for a Southern California-based non-profit agency providing case management, crisis counseling, and vocational planning services. His areas of research interest include examining the relationships between individual, contextual, or case-service factors and vocational rehabilitation outcomes of transition-age youth and adults with disabilities. Mark is a Certified Rehabilitation Counselor; he holds a Master of Science degree in Rehabilitation Counseling from San Diego State University, and a Ph.D. in Human Rehabilitation from the University of Northern Colorado.

Nellie Tran, CSP
Nellie Tran, CSP

Nellie Tran, Ph.D. (University of Illinois, Chicago 2010) Dr. Tran is a community psychologist specializing in the study of subtle forms of discrimination (i.e., microaggressions, racial color-blindness), especially pertaining to race and gender. She is particularly interested in understanding which biases exist in different contexts, how people adapt to them, and how best to change environments to reduce and buffer people from the impact of subtle biases. Her current projects explore the impact of subtle biases on women in the STEM disciplines, the effect of microaggressions on U.S.-born Asian Americans, how school/classroom norms influence the way students think about and understand race.

Laura Owen, CSP
Laura Owen, CSP

Laura comes to SDSU from Johns Hopkins University. In addition to her role as an assistant professor in school counseling, she will serve as the Director of College and Career Readiness, a new division in the Center for Excellence in School Counseling and Leadership (CESCaL). Prior to moving to higher ed, Laura was a high school counselor, district school counseling supervisor, and a writer and co-principal investigator on two US Department of Education Elementary and Secondary School Counseling grants. Laura’s dissertation looked at the U.S. Department of Education’s FAFSA Completion Pilot Project and examined the influence of school counselor outreach on FAFSA completion and college enrollment. Since 2012, she has worked with several large urban school districts across the US to evaluate the impact of individualized school counselor outreach on students on time college matriculation. Her current research looks at interventions to address the summer melt and the influence of customized and personalized text messages on FAFSA completion and college enrollment. She was just awarded an IES grant to expand her research to a national sample.

Arianne Miller, CSP
Arianne Miller, CSP

Arianne E. Miller earned her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from Adelphi University in 2008. She completed a pre-doctoral internship at the Center for Multicultural Training in Psychology at Boston University Medical School and a Postdoctoral Fellowship at Harvard Medical School/ Boston Children’s Hospital. Prior to coming to SDSU she held positions as a Lecturer in Psychology and Critical Gender Studies at UCSD; a Staff Psychologist at Fenway Health, a LGBT health center in Boston; and a Clinical Instructor at Harvard Medical School. Her areas of research include the use of race and gender in the phenomenon known as "Gaydar," the relationship between beliefs about gender roles and how people conceptualize sexual orientation, and the improvement of self-care practices among clinicians and underserved communities. Dr. Miller is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist with specialties in Multicultural and LGBTQ Psychology, Adolescence, and Eating Disorders. She is interested in the intersections of race, gender and sexuality wherever they may be found; food politics and obesity; and how to reduce stigma about mental illness and psychotherapy. As a native New Yorker, Dr. Miller never imagined moving to California, owning a boogie board or being well on her way to becoming “outdoorsy.”

Sarah Rieth, CFD
Sarah Rieth, CFD

Sarah R. Rieth is joining the Child and Family Development department from the Psychiatry Department at UCSD. She received her PhD in developmental psychology from the Autism Intervention Research Program at UCSD in 2012, with a focus in adapting evidence-based practices for children with autism for community environments. Her current research areas include long-term influences of early intervention, active ingredients across treatment approaches for children with autism, and the promotion of social-emotional skills in early development. In her free time, she enjoys cooking, outdoor activities, and traveling.

Alyson Shapiro, CFD
Alyson Shapiro, CFD

Alyson Shapiro received her Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology from the University of Washington under the direction of Dr. John Gottman, and then received post-doctoral training in the area of Infant Mental Health under the direction of Dr. Susan Spieker at the Barnard Center for Infant mental Health and Development at the University of Washington. Alyson also hasseveral years of experience teaching, mentoring students, and conducting research in the T. Denny Sanford School of Social and Family Dynamics at Arizona State University. Alyson aims to promote the wellbeing of infants, children, couples, and families through: 1) conducting and disseminating high-quality, application-relevant research; 2) teaching in the university setting; and 3) translating research findings for practitioners, educators, students, and parents. Alyson fosters transdisciplinary collaborative relationships and utilize multiple methodological approaches to further this goal. The focus of Alyson’s research is on family dynamics around the transition to parenthood period, and includes a focus on both high and low risk families. This dual focus enables a more comprehensive understanding of issues that affect infant mental health, family dynamics, couple relationships, and human development.

Melissa Soto, STE
Melissa Soto, STE

Dr. Melissa Soto joins the School of Teacher Education as a new mathematics educator. Dr. Soto earned her PhD in mathematics education at UC Davis, where she was advised by Dr. Rebecca Ambrose, a former STE faculty member. Melissa earned her BA in Elementary Education at the University of North Florida and MEd in Mathematics Education at the University of Central Florida. She holds Florida teaching credentials in elementary education (K-6) and mathematics education (grades 5-9), and is bilingual in English and Spanish. She has taught third and fifth grade in Florida. She also is an experienced professional development leader, conducting numerous sessions on Cognitively Guided Instruction for elementary teachers, and has participated in funded projects and served as a TA at UC Davis. Her research focuses on integrating mobile learning using screencasts as a formative assessment tool for mathematical explanations/reasoning. She has found that the use of screencasts has the potential to transform the learning environment by allowing teachers to gain more insight into their students’ mathematical thinking and encouraging students to reflect on their thinking. When Dr. Soto is not interviewing young math students or working with pre- and inservice teachers, she seeks out travel adventures. Her latest travel experience involved teaching Spanish to Arabic speakers in Abu Dhabi, UAE.

COE Programs Making a Difference

Dr. Jo Boaler Discusses Using 'Mindset' to Move Students' Careers Forward

Dr. Jo Boaler

On June 2, 2014, Dr. Jo Boaler presented "The Mindset Revolution: Teaching mathematics for a growth mindset," at San Diego State University.

Dr. Boaler’s presentation was part of San Diego State University’s Center for Research in Mathematics and Science Education (CRMSE) Distinguished Lecturer Series. Over 300 people attended the CRMSE Series, which included a roundtable discussion with math education leaders. Stanford Professor Boaler, shared her insight in the areas of mindset, mathematics, and the promotion of equity to motivate students to take their careers forward in these fields.

Boaler is a professor in the Graduate School of Education at Stanford University. Her research focuses on the most effective learning environments for students learning mathematics and has won awards in both England and the United States. Her studies have shown that students, who engage actively in their mathematics learning rather than simply practicing procedures, achieve at higher level.

CRMSE is dedicated to advancing mathematics and science education at local, state, and national levels. Made up of an interdisciplinary community of scholars in the College of Sciences and the College of Education at San Diego State University, the center is engaged in research, curriculum development and dissemination, publications, presentations, and leadership roles in the community and across the nation.

Read more about this program at the CRMSE website.


Gift Box Icon Help make a difference by supporting programs like CRMSE's Distinguished Lecture Series. Consider giving a gift to the College of Education today!

COE Programs Making a Difference

New Online Masters in Technology Leadership is First of Its Kind

MA in Technology Leadership Logo

San Diego State University and the San Diego County Office of Education are excited to announce the launching of a collaborative Online Master of Arts in Educational Leadership program focusing on Technology Leadership.

This latest partnership between SDSU and SDCOE is the premiere program in educational technology and the first of its kind, marrying the strengths of two outstanding institutions and their specialties: San Diego County Office of Education, Integrated Technology Services, with the San Diego State University Department of Educational Leadership. Both are well known for their areas of expertise.

The next cohort of this 15-month program will begin in summer 2015, with courses beginning late May. The program application window runs from November 1, 2014-April 1, 2015. For more information, please visit the M.A. EDL in Technology website.


Gift Box Icon Help make a difference by supporting first-of-its-kind programs like this online masters. Consider giving a gift to the College of Education today!

COE Students & Alumni Making a Difference

Young Aztecs Celebrate Dr. Seuss and Reading with CFD

Young Aztecs Celebrate Dr. Seuss and Reading with CFD

Story contributed by: Shelby Smith

In Spring 2014, in honor of National Read Across America Day, preschoolers from the San Diego State Children’s Center enjoyed a morning of listening to their favorite books being read by their teachers, parents, and other volunteers. The day is held annually to celebrate the birthday of Dr. Seuss, the renowned children’s book author.

Three and four year old preschoolers walked across the SDSU campus to the lawn in front of the iconic Hepner Hall for a special reading of classics like The Cat in the Hat, Green Eggs and Ham, and The Lorax. The goal of the event was to promote literacy and highlight the significance of reading early in children’s development.

Last spring marked the second annual event hosted by the Child and Family Development Department as part of its ongoing Children’s Library Project, and was organized by CFD seniors, Cyrene Prudente and Shelby Smith. In 2011, the CFD Department helped revitalize the children’s library at the on-campus Children’s Center, which was unorganized and rarely used by children and families. The receipt of a President’s Leadership Grant also assisted with the purchase of a computer database, furniture, and books for the revitalization project.

CFD students continue to support the library project through an ongoing action research project coordinated by faculty member Dr. Sarah Garrity. CFD graduate student, Chun-Ju Chen, is currently creating an online module linked to the Children’s Center website that will inform parents of infants, toddlers, and preschoolers of the benefits of shared book reading. The module will also provide information about high quality children’s literature and as useful instructions and strategies to help them read to their children more effectively.


Gift Box Icon Help make a difference for future SDSU graduates. Consider giving a gift to the College of Education today!


First day of fall classes
Monday, August 25, 2014
Holiday — Labor Day
Monday, September 1, 2014
Faculty/staff holiday. Campus closed.


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