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Illuminating the Strength of Faculty Research

Twelve new faculty members expand expertise, capacity
Lightning Symposium 2019

For the second time in as many years, the UNC School of Education showcased the work of its faculty members and doctoral students during its Lightning Symposium hosted Friday, September 20, at the Rizzo Conference Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

The symposium convened faculty, students, staff and campus partners, providing a platform to briefly share a range of current projects and their potential impact and to spur future collaborations.

The event also served as an introduction to field-advancing work conducted by 12 new faculty members who joined the School in 2019:

  • Dorothy Espelage, William C. Friday Distinguished Professor of Education, is a leading authority on student well-being and school safety.
  • Kara Hume, associate professor, is Co-PI of the Center on Secondary Education for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder launched with a $10 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education.
  • Ethan Hutt, assistant professor, conducts research that historically examines educational testing and assessment of students and educators.
  • Daniel Klasik, assistant professor, works to understand the ways students consider college options and then create effective policy solutions with a focus on equity.
  • Kathryn Leech, assistant professor, specializes in children’s language and literacy development during early childhood.
  • Constance Lindsay, assistant professor, conducts research focused on policies and practices to help close racial achievement gaps in education.
  • Esther Ohito, assistant professor, leads research to address the role of race in teacher education programs and to promote anti-racist pedagogy.
  • Troy Sadler, Thomas James Distinguished Professor of Experiential Learning, examines how students negotiate complex socio-scientific issues and how these issues may be used as contexts for science learning.
  • Lauren Sartain, assistant professor, studies a range of topics in urban education policy, focused on understanding policies and practices that have positive effects on the lives of students and adults in school buildings.
  • Todd Cherner, clinical assistant professor and program director of the Master of Arts in Educational Innovation, Technology and Entrepreneurship program, studies the quality of edtech and how teachers use it to promote student engagement and learning.
  • Dana Riger, clinical assistant professor, conducts quantitative research concerned with the role technology plays in dyadic and family relationships.
  • Yuliana Rodriguez-Vongsavanh, clinical assistant professor, studies the family and couple experiences of immigrant groups.