The inaugural Ed.D. Postgraduate Research Conference kicked off in July
Candidates pursuing their doctorate in Leadership for Educational Justice (Ed.D.) in the School of Education got a chance this summer to present and learn from each other as they embark on their research for final dissertations.
The Ed.D. program engages up to 20 students per cohort in rigorous study, debate, research and practice. The driving mission of the doctoral program is to prepare educational leaders to recognize social and educational inequity and to serve as advocates for the disenfranchised and under-served.
At the July 9 student-led Postgraduate Research Conference, held in the Hall of Letters, nine current second year Ed.D. students made brief presentations on what they plan to research for their final dissertations. Topics included coming out in public school, first generation Latinas/Chicanas, service and gender, and literacy intervention with low socioeconomic status students.
International Visiting Scholar in Global Development and Education Alice Jowett, who helped the students plan and organize the conference, says it is important to give students an opportunity to discuss their work publicly, to receive feedback and to gain confidence and experience presenting at a professional level.
“Our hope is that our students will have an impact not only academically, but also on future policy and practice at the school, state and federal level,” says Jowett. “The topics students have selected show their clear commitment to social justice and education.”
For Amy Cecilio, a second-year doctoral candidate starting her 10th year of teaching high school French in Lake Elsinore, the conference provided a valuable opportunity to gather feedback on her proposed dissertation on the experiences of LGBTQ teachers.
“It was useful to hear from faculty members who had different perspectives, and from other students, too,” she says. “We’re all working professionals. Someone who works in counseling or administration or is working for social services might have a different lens than a teacher.”