A new cohort of Social Justice & Diversity Graduate Research Fellows has been selected for the 2021-2022 academic year. The fellowship offers eight students from various fields within education the opportunity to form a community to support and promote research in the areas of social justice and diversity.
The fellowship aims to facilitate networking and interdisciplinary collaborations, provide a platform for feedback and mentoring, and create a space where new projects can be discussed and promoted.
The fellowship is designed to support students as they learn practical, rigorous research skills, bolster their writing, and gain exposure to the submission and editorial processes essential to being productive researchers. Funding will also be available to help students attend conferences to present their research.
The Social Justice and Diversity Graduate Research Fellows program is directed by Dr. Natoya Haskins, associate professor of counselor education, and Dr. Janise Parker, assistant professor of school psychology. If you are interested in learning more about the program, please contact Dr. Haskins at firstname.lastname@example.org or Dr. Parker at email@example.com.
Meet the new Social Justice and Diversity Graduate Research Fellows
Ph.D. Counselor Education & Supervision
Why is Social Justice important? As long as systems are set in place that normalize the overwhelming privileges and benefits granted to the dominant society, many marginalized people may not even recognize inequality. Philippa's interest is to raise awareness in this area, and have marginalized people see where change can occur for the benefit of their lives.
M.Ed. Military and Veterans Counseling
Talia Coleman-Chatman has always been a lover of people, especially those within her community. Lending a hand, especially someone who could use the extra help, has always been an important aspect of her life. Talia is also a Durham native who nurtured her passion by completing her post-secondary degrees in psychology and human science. Talia is a second-year master's student in the Clinical Mental Health Counseling program with a focus on military veterans and their families. She became passionate about this population during her years as a military spouse. It is her earnest hope that she will be able to impact the lives and well-being of others directly and that she can aid them in navigating systems with people who have no true understanding of the culture in which they are derived. The bulk of her experience embodies working with Gold Star moms within the military and working with BIPOC pregnant women through an organization she helps lead called MAAME, Inc. The mission is to help women of color navigate systems that were not truly designed with them in mind. She eagerly seeks to support the vision of her organization which aims to meet the needs of women through sisterhood, education, community resources, and research.
M.Ed. Higher Education Administration
Ivana's undergraduate academic interest areas at the University of Richmond led her to study human rights issues in Poland, Jordan, London, Canada, Ireland, and Northern Ireland. After her experience working as a Governor’s Fellow in the Office of Policy for past Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe, she sought opportunities to address human rights issues in institutions of higher education. Currently, Ivana serves as the Assistant Director of Alumni Engagement and Inclusion Initiatives at William & Mary; where she develops the engagement, leadership and philanthropy of three identity-based alumni communities: Asian-Pacific Islander-Middle Eastern/Southwest Asian (APIM), Crim Dell Association of LGBTQ+ alumni, and Latinx alumni. Additionally, Ivana is the newly appointed Chair of the University Advancement Diversity & Inclusion Committee. She is extremely passionate about engaging communities through education in meaningful ways, both at home, in the United States, and globally.
M.Ed. Clinical Mental Health Counseling
Paul Kabera is a master's student in the Clinical Mental Health Counseling program. He serves on the executive board of the Society for Sexual, Affectional, Intersex, and Gender Expansive Identities (SAIGE) as an Emerging Leader. His long-term career goal is to work with adults that present a variety of mental health concerns. However, he has special interests in helping individuals work through complex trauma, especially those whose trauma relates to marginalized social identities and those with comorbid chronic illness and/or a terminal diagnosis.
M.Ed. School Psychology
Alexus' social justice interests are focused on educational inequities, specifically disbanding the school-to-prison pipeline. She is also an advocate for increasing awareness of mental health in the Black community, and for creating and implementing more culturally-competent treatment options for mental health illnesses.
M.Ed. Clinical Mental Health Counseling
In her professional career, Deanna is the Director of Training for an international startup company. She wants to open minds through imparting knowledge and helping others give voice to their story by creating a space where compassion and equity thrive. In the future, she hopes to provide consulting, training, and individual counseling to workplace environments, community organizations, and individuals in the areas of DEI, emotional intelligence, cultural awareness, organizational change, and crisis and trauma intervention.
Danielle Likvan Swanson
M.Ed. School Counseling
Danielle's research interests include disparity of basic needs within public schools, epigenetics and its collaboration with counseling, as well as race and gender experience and equality within public schools. As a Social Justice and Diversity Fellow, Danielle looks forward to expanding her knowledge and experience in research-based social justice work and continuing the work on the current research studies and making a difference in the lives of the families involved. She is passionate about educating herself and others on current and historical social justice issues, and, as a parent and Girl Scout troop leader, her interactions with young children are always teachable moments. For her, social justice is a way of life, and the foundation upon which she is trying to build her children's outlook on the world.
Monique D. Williams
Ed.S. School Psychology
Monique believes that being an educator puts her in the forefront of being a changemaker, differentiator, and most of all a disruptor to the failure of the education system that gets stuck on maintaining racial and social inequity. She decided to become a Research Fellow because she wants to gain the resources and tools to further her good trouble and lens in the community through strong academic research and application. She truly believes that educators must dismantle the system that lays the foundation for how students (especially marginalized youth of color and low SES) and staff are treated, permeated in special education, and pushed out of schools with little attempts to intervene and to meet students' unmet needs.