AERA Announces 2021–22 Minority Dissertation Fellows
AERA Announces 2021–22 Minority Dissertation Fellows

June 2021

AERA has announced the recipients of the 2021–22 AERA Minority Dissertation Fellowship in Education Research. This highly selective program, designed for members of racial and ethnic groups historically underrepresented in education research, offers dissertation fellowships to minority graduate students and provides mentoring and guidance toward the completion of their doctoral studies. An important aim of the fellowship is to enhance the racial and ethnic diversity of faculty, scholars, and researchers in the field of education research.

The six new fellows are in the final stages of their dissertation studies across a broad range of topics, such as family engagement in bilingual schools, K-12 school finance in an era of fiscal crisis, family influence on students’ science values and STEM career aspirations, and historical research of Black teachers in both the 19th century and the post Civil Rights era. Using innovative quantitative and qualitative research methods, their studies conceptualize education research from cross and interdisciplinary perspectives including economics, history, psychology, and sociology.

Jennifer Hurst
University of Kansas
"The Decline in Black Teachers: Causes and Effects in Postwar America"
AL Liou
Teachers College, Columbia University
"Youth Activist Perspectives on Age-Based Power Dynamics and Solidarity"
Christopher Saldana
University of Colorado Boulder
"Articles Examining U.S. K-12 School Finance Policy and Politics in Moments of Fiscal Crisis"
Jasmine Alvarado
Boston College
"What Counts as Family Engagement? Raced, Classed, and Linguicized Relations between Families and a Two-Way Immersion Program"
Amber Neal
University of Georgia
"Portraits of Black Women Abolitionist Teachers and the Spirit of Our Work"
Kayla Puente
University of California, Irvine
"Apoyo de la Familia in the Sciences: A Retrospective Analysis of Family Support, Adolescent Science Values, and Cost in High School among Latinx Undergraduate Students"


Fellows are awarded a $25,000 stipend to complete their dissertation research and training. The awardees will present their work in a poster session during the 2022 Annual Meeting in San Diego, where they will meet with the Minority Dissertation Fellowship Selection Committee and other senior scholars as part of a mentoring and career development workshop.

Recent fellows are now faculty members at leading research institutions, including Georgia State University, Harvard University, Southern Methodist University, University of Georgia, and University of Southern California. Other recent fellows are conducting research at university-based research centers or applied research organizations. Their work has appeared in several peer-reviewed journals and edited volumes.

AERA Council established the Minority Dissertation Fellowship Program in Education Research in 1991 to support outstanding graduate students as they develop their research and begin their careers. AERA and its leadership are committed to providing a program of capacity building and training opportunities for scholars from racial and ethnic groups historically underrepresented in education research. Council recently reaffirmed its commitment to the program by increasing the stipend and reiterating the importance of supporting racial and ethnic minority graduate students and their scholarship.

“We are enthusiastic about the research these outstanding graduate students are developing,” said George L. Wimberly, AERA director of professional development and diversity officer. ”The fellows are conducting novel studies will enhance knowledge in the field. We are pleased to support their work and provide professional development and guidance.”

“We are deeply committed to the success of this program as it reflects the best of AERA’s commitment to diversity and inclusion,” said AERA Executive Director Felice J. Levine. “We are continually impressed by the work that fellowship recipients have produced and its impact across every subfield of our field.”

This is a highly competitive fellowship that funds the strongest research on topics across education, school and schooling processes, and student experiences. The selection committee seeks proposals with the potential to bring grounded, insightful, and informed perspectives to the field. AERA will begin accepting the next cycle proposals for this Program in later this summer with a November 1, 2021, application deadline.

For further details about the program, please email the AERA Fellowships Program at