Dean\'s Update – 3/8/2022
03/08/2022, 06:15:02 PM
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March 8, 2022


I’m proud of our College community for continuing to rise to the occasion — accelerating research activity, preparing students to lead in their fields, and meeting fundraising challenges.

To highlight a few recent accomplishments:

  • Our faculty were very well represented among the “50-in-5” honorees celebrated for their achievements in the second and third years of the University’s initiative. Please see details below.
  • At least a dozen of our alumni have won Teacher of the Year awards at their schools over the last few months, continuing an annual tradition of such recognition.
  • Our faculty, staff, alumni and friends rallied together to hit our UH Giving Day goal yesterday to raise funds for student scholarships. Thank you, all! The need is great, as we received about 300 scholarship applications this year.

Onward with continued success,

Banner: A throwback to a sunny day on campus


The University recently celebrated faculty for their “50-in-5” achievements related to major grants, high-impact publications and national awards in years two and three of the initiative.

The following COE faculty were honored for major grants unless indicated otherwise (from top left): Consuelo Arbona (PHLS), Ann Chen (PHLS), Virmarie Correa-Fernández (PHLS), Marcel de Dios (PHLS), Conra Gist (CUIN), Elsa Gonzalez (ELPS; grant and NSF CAREER award), Jorge Gonzalez (PHLS), Jacqueline Hawkins (ELPS), Cathy Horn (ELPS), Milena Keller-Margulis (PHLS), Dave Louis (ELPS; Fulbright award), Anne McClellan (ACES), Lyle McKinney (ELPS; Fulbright award), Rosenda Murillo (PHLS; publication), Ezemenari Obasi (PHLS), April Peters-Hawkins (ELPS), Lorraine Reitzel (PHLS), Augustina Reyes (ELPS), Kristi Santi (ELPS) and Amber Thompson (CUIN).

50in50 Research Recognition Advancing Equity in Education & Health


  • Career Aspirations of Asian Americans — Virtual guest lecture by Visiting Professor Alvin Leung. Sponsored by the Asian American Studies Center. Wednesday, March 9. 10 – 11:30 a.m. RSVP for event link.
  • Recognizing Acculturation as Racial Trauma — Virtual guest lecture by William Ming Liu, a professor of counseling psychology at the University of Maryland. Sponsored by the student group CheckED. Wednesday, March 23. 1 p.m. RSVP for Zoom information.
  • March for Babies walk — Sunday, April 24. 8 a.m. On campus. Join the COE team in support of healthy moms and babies by walking, running and/or making a donation.
  • COE Spring Commencement — Sunday, May 15. 2 p.m. Fertitta Center.



  • Thank you for your support of UH Giving Day! We met our challenge of receiving at least 50 donations of $50 to the COE Scholarship Fund, which generated an additional $2,000 gift from campaign co-chairs Kelly and Todd Thurber. A special thank you to Charlotte Carp (ELPS) and Geralyn Stevens for co-chairing the Faculty & Staff Campaign and to the communications team.


  • 2021 ePerformance: The deadline for supervisors to upload completed 2021 documents is Monday, March 14.
  • 2022 ePerformance: The deadline for employees to submit 2022 goals is Friday, March 11. The deadline for managers to establish the criteria is Friday, March 25. 


  • We’re delighted to share that Ana Morales is taking on a new role to complete our team of teaching and learning advisors. Ana previously worked as a program coordinator with our Teach Forward Houston students.


Editor’s note: External grant awards are listed under Office of Research. For publications, additional authors are not included. Please email Ericka Mellon with any questions.

Curriculum & Instruction


  • Kudos to our teacher education team for the recent string of Teacher of the Year award winners among our graduates!
  • Conra Gist discussed her forthcoming “Handbook of Research on Teachers of Color and Indigenous Teachers” in this AERA Q&A.

Educational Leadership & Policy Studies


  • Please welcome Amy Murdock as a project manager for the Asian American Studies Center! She earned her Ph.D. in higher education and policy studies from us in 2021.

Internal Grants

  • Virginia Snodgrass Rangel was awarded a National Centers Planning Award from UH for “Planning Grant: Engineering Research Center for Engineering Student Success Initiatives” (co-principal investigator).


  • Lyle McKinney, Virginia Snodgrass Rangel, Vincent D. Carales. “The impact of academic momentum on postsecondary matriculation among early college high school students,” Community College Journal of Research and Practice.
  • Virginia Snodgrass Rangel. “Career development in highly sex-typed postsecondary vocational technical education programs: A social cognitive analysis,” Journal of Career Assessment.


  • Yali Zou. “Transformational University Leadership: A Case Study for 21st Century Leaders and Aspirational Research Universities,” Emerald Publishing.


  • Keith Butcher and Virginia Snodgrass Rangel have been selected as 2022-23 faculty fellows of the Elizabeth D. Rockwell Center on Ethics and Leadership at the UH Hobby School of Public Affairs. They’re collaborating on a study of school principal interns’ experiences during COVID and their engagement with equity-focused leadership.
  • April Peters-Hawkins has been selected as co-chair of the AERA Division A (Administration, Organization, and Leadership) Mentoring Committee.
  • Kmt Shockley has been appointed an affiliate faculty member in UH’s Department of African American Studies.
  • Virginia Snodgrass Rangel has been selected vice president-elect of AERA Division H (Research, Evaluation, and Assessment in Schools). She will become vice president in 2023.
  • The Asian American Studies Center kicked off its 2022 Multicultural Success Initiative mentoring program with 20 doctoral student mentors and 41 undergraduate mentees from various majors.

Community Engagement

  • Kristen Hassett finalized a memorandum of understanding with Fort Bend ISD for the educational diagnostician practicum.


  • Kristen Hassett, Milena Keller-Margulis (PHLS) and Sarah Mire (PHLS) presented on “Evidence-based Practices for Autism: Implications for Teachers and School Psychologists” at the National Association of School Psychologists convention. Hassett and Mire also presented on “Co-Occurring ASD and ADHD: Identification Considerations for School-Based Interdisciplinary Collaboration.”

Psychological, Health, & Learning Sciences

Internal Grants

  • Milena Keller-Margulis received a UH Small Grant for “Examining Statewide Learning Loss in Writing in Response to Covid-19.”


  • Ann Chen. “Displacement and Isolation: Insights from a Mental Stress Survey of Syrian Refugees in Houston, Texas, USA,” International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.
  • Virmarie Correa-Fernández. “Utilización de prácticas clínicas para promover la cesación tabáquica en personas que viven con VIH en Argentina [Use of smoking cessation clinical practices among persons living with HIV in Argentina],” Revista Argentina de Salud Publica.
  • Michael Matta, Milena Keller-Margulis. “Evaluating Predictive and Diagnostic Bias for Hand-Calculated and Automated Written Expression Curriculum-Based Measurement Scores,” Special Issue of Assessment in Education.
  • Norma Olvera. “Reducing obesogenic dietary behaviors in Hispanic children through a family-based, culturally tailored RCT: Abriendo Caminos,” International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.
  • Lorraine Reitzel, Ann Chen, Maggie Britton. “Guest Support for Smoke-Free Policies within a Homeless Shelter,” International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.
  • Kayce Solari Williams. “Black Girls and School Discipline: The Role of Teacher Race, Pubertal Development, and Discipline Philosophy on Discipline Decisions,” Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders.


  • Milena Keller-Margulis was selected for the APA Leadership Institute for Women in Psychology.
  • Norma Olvera was elected president of the Hispanic Health Coalition.

Community Engagement

  • Allison Master presented on gender disparities in computer science and engineering at Rice University’s Industrial-Organizational Psychology Brown Bag.


  • Jay Lee presented on “A Campus-based Collaboration Model for International College Students” and “Promoting the Utilization of College Services Among Underserved Students” at the American College Counseling Association conference. Lee presented on “Dynamics of Online Engagement: Counseling Students’ Experiences and Perceptions in Distance Learning” and “Supporting International Counseling Students in Distance Education” at the Counselor Education & Distance Learning Conference.


  • Check out the latest media clips, featuring Kristen Hassett (ELPS), Allison Master (PHLS) and Ezemenari Obasi (PHLS).



  • Minority stress, stress physiology dysregulation, and drug use in sexual minority adults. NIH. $3,413,358 (incl. 55% IDC). Nathan Grant Smith (PHLS), PI; Ezemenari Obasi, Ann Chen (PHLS), co-investigators.
  • Positive parenting through playgroups: A pilot randomized control trial. NIH. $422,455 (incl. 55% IDC). Norma Olvera (PHLS), co-investigator.
  • Designing an online gamified intervention to advance morphological knowledge in emergent bilinguals: A mixed methods project. NIH. $426,250 (incl. 55% IDC). Miao Li (CUIN), PI; Mikel Cole, Susie Gronseth, Jie Zhang (CUIN), co-investigators.

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