Educational Leadership & Policy

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The Mission of the Educational Leadership and Policy Department is to prepare ethical researchers, leaders and policy makers in PK-12 through higher education who are informed by comprehensive and empirically-based theory and research, as well as committed to leading educational organizations that enact principles of justice, equity, and excellence for all learners.

Highlights & News

Rudy MedinaRudy Medina, a current PhD student in Educational Leadership and Policy, received The W. Rolfe Kerr Community-Engaged Scholarship for 2013-2014.  Rudy received this prestigious honor at the College of Education Alumni Awards banquet held in the new Beverley Taylor Sorenson Arts & Education Complex on April 24, 2014.  Rudy is also an alumni of the ELP department, receiving his Master’s of Education with an emphasis in Student Affairs in the Spring of 2013.  Rudy currently serves as the Latino/a Programs Coordinator in the Office of Student Equity and Diversity here on campus. 

Lauren Peacock, a graduate student in K12 School Administration in the Educational Leadership and Policy Department has received the Excellence in Education Award. Lauren is currently a teacher at Oquirrh Hills Middle School. She is recognized for her ability in improving practice in classroom instruction and student achievement. Lauren is a key player in professional development for teachers that addresses TA Interventions and ZAP. Lauren has a bright future in school leadership.

aleman Stolen Education A Film
Enrique Alemán, Jr. Executive Producer & Co-Writer
Segregated by race. Punished for being Mexican-American. Eight children testified against injustice. This is the untold story of how they changed education in Texas. Read More...

ErinRecent Publication by Erin Castro: Castro, E. L. (2013). Racialized Readiness for College and Career: Toward an Equity-Grounded Social Science of Intervention Programming. Community College Review, 41(4):

hancockNatalie Hancock, a second year student in the K12 Educational Leadership M.Ed program, was named the Teacher of the Year by the Utah Association of Family and Consumer Sciences. She was selected following a peer nomination process. "It's a very big honor for me just to be recognized among my peers," said Hancock.

Hancock started her teaching career six years ago at Eastmont Middle School. While there, she received the 2011 New CTE Teacher Award from the Utah Association of Teachers of Family & Consumer Sciences, a division of the Utah Association of Career & Technical Education. Natalie has a knack for sparking students' imagination, infusing math and science principles into her curriculum, and continually boosting enrollment in her classes. Congratulations, Natalie and we look forward to your future leadership achievements.

Colin BenColin Ben completed his term on the National Indian Education Association (NIEA) Board of Directors as the Student Board Member. He served on the Legislative and Organization committees. "Since 1970, NIEA has been the premiere advocate for American Indian, Native Hawaiian, and Alaska Native students. It supports traditional Native cultures and values; enables Native learners to become contributing members of their communities; promotes Native control of educational institutions; and works to improve educational opportunities and resources for Native children throughout the United States" (

ledesma-ginsburg After attending oral arguments in Schuette v. Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action, as a guest of  Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, ELP Assistant Professor María Ledesma meets with Justice Ginsburg in her chambers, October 15, 2013.

2013 NASPA Region V Graduate Student Rising Star Award

portiaCongratulations to Portia Anderson for receiving the 2013 NASPA Region V Graduate Student Rising Star Award! Portia is a second year student in the master’s degree with an emphasis in student affairs and serves as an Assistant Residential Education Coordinator in Housing. This Award is presented to a student based on the following criteria:

• service to others,
• demonstration of outstanding leadership skills,
• significant contribution to their institution by planning a program or activity that benefits students,
• involvement in research that would benefit the student affairs profession,
• helping to make the campus culture a positive experience for students, and
• going beyond what other students are contributing on campus.


Enrique Alemán, Jr.

Enrique Alemán, Jr., Judith Perez & Nereida Oliva (pictured below) co-authored an article in The Journal of Cases in Educational Leadership titled Adelante en Utah: Dilemmas of Leadership and College Access in a University–School–Community Partnership. This case study discusses some of the issues that Adelante, a 6-year university–school–community partnership, continues to encounter in addressing college access and parent and community leadership in a community of color.

Nereida Oliva
Judith Perez
Rosie Connor

Three Department of Educational Leadership and Policy graduate students were selected to participate in the UCEA Barbara L. Jackson Scholars Network Program. Nereida Oliva and Judith Perez were selected for the 2012-2014 cohort and Rosie Conner for the 2013-2015 cohort. The Barbara L. Jackson Scholars Network Program was established by UCEA as a two-year program to provide formal networking, mentoring and professional development for graduate students of color who intend to become professors of educational leadership. For more information regarding the UCEA Barbara L. Jackson Scholars Program see

Amy BergersonListen to Amy Bergerson's interview on Tampa, FL radio station WMGG. Amy discusses how college students can make the most of their time while in college. (Interview starts at minute 82.) 


Bobbi WozabTwo alumni of the master’s degree program with an emphasis in student affairs, Bobbi Davis and Jen Wozab from the class of 2012, received two of the University Academic Advising Committee (UAAC) Outstanding Academic Advising Award for 2013.  Jen’s award was for an advisor who has been advising for 3 years or less and Bobbi’s award was for more than 3 years. 

Tim Stanley, ELP doctoral student, has been selected as a Fellow for the 2013 National Data Institute sponsored by the Association for Institutional Research (AIR), National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), and National Science Foundation (NSF). The Institute, held in Washington, DC, is an intensive week-long seminar where participants collaborate with federal officials to build their research capacity around national postsecondary education datasets and survey research methodologies.  Fellows are selected via a competitive review process, drawing applicants both nationally and internationally.  Congratulations Tim!  More information on the Institute is available here .





Last Updated: 5/7/14