Ph.D. UW Student Receives Fellowship to Develop Latino School Leaders | New

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June 20, 2022

Victoria Flores

A doctorate from the University of Wyoming. student in the literacy concentration of the curriculum and instruction was recently selected for a scholarship from the Latino Educator and Administrator Development (LEAD) program.

Victoria Flores, of El Paso, Texas, will be part of the third cohort of the program which aims to invite, advance and retain Latino educators in Catholic schools through a summer conference and program one year training.

The program was created by the Alliance for Catholic Education at the University of Notre Dame and the National Catholic Educational Association to increase the number of Latino school leaders in the education system.

Latino children are one of the fastest growing segments of the US school population, yet there is often a lack of Latino leadership in schools. The LEAD program emphasizes that Latino representation is critical in the classroom and that when a student and teacher share the same identity, it can lead to better student outcomes.

“When Latinx educators take on leadership roles in schools, it sends the message to Latinx families saying, ‘You’re welcome here. Your culture, your identity and your voice are represented, says Flores. “Plus, having Latinx school leaders shows Latinx students that they, too, have access to college careers. Latinx leaders serving as role models can empower students to play a role in their own learning and academic success. »

The fellowship aims to develop transformative Latino leaders by uncovering participants’ personal leadership trajectory and helping to form leadership qualities rooted in Latino culture. The goals of the framework are to inspire LEAD Scholars to embrace, educate, and empower themselves as leaders and the future generation of Latino students.

“As a student who has experienced marginalization due to a lack of representation, I feel called to advocate for those who continue to go through similar experiences in schools,” says Flores. “My current doctoral work is on a language and cultural immersion program at an Arapaho school on the Wind River Reservation. The skills and abilities I learned through the LEAD program will facilitate my research on language learning. language and culture of Arapaho students.”

The LEAD program offers educators a small learning community that meets monthly via Zoom. The community is guided by a LEAD mentor to inspire thoughtful and informative conversations on a variety of topics, including embracing destiny and leading with charity.

“My goal is to complete my doctorate and become a teacher,” says Flores. “I came to learn how teachers fulfill a crucial leadership role for teachers in training. Latinx educators and leaders must be cultivated today as well as in future generations.

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