Theresa Catalano

Theresa Catalano, PhD Associate Professor

Theresa Catalano is Associate Professor of Second Language Education/Applied Linguistics in the Department of Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education. Her research interests overlap in several important ways with the aims of M3. First, Theresa is dedicated to examining the connection between migration and education, namely through preparing teachers to work with students with (im)migrant backgrounds. In her book Talking about Global Migration (Multilingual Matters, 2016), she interviews migrants from around the world analyzing their discourse by looking at the metaphors they use to describe their experiences, and then providing implications for teachers. She is also interested in the experiences of multilingual students and teachers and how they draw on their languages in learning (Catalano, Traore Moundiba, & Pir, 2019; Catalano & Hamann, 2016; Catalano, Shende & Suh, 2016). Additionally, she is committed to the integration of arts-based education and is currently working on several projects which show how arts-based interventions can be used to improve and enrich the education of newcomer students, but also better prepare teachers to work with them (Catalano & Leonard, 2016). Finally, Theresa employs critical discourse analysis/studies to analyze anti-immigration discourse in the US (Catalano 2013, 2016, 2017), discourse about dual language programs (Catalano & Moeller, 2013 Liu & Catalano, 2015), the border patrol/unaccompanied child migrants (Catalano & Musolff, 2019; Catalano & Mitchell-McCollough, 2019), right-wing populism, immigration and the Roma (Catalano, 2014; Fielder & Catalano 2017; Catalano & Fielder 2018), and the way preservice students talk about emergent multilinguals they interact with in their practicums (Catalano, Reeves, & Wessels, 2018). Besides discourse in the US Theresa has examined immigration discourse in South Africa (Catalano, Fox & Vandeyar, 2016) and Italy (Catalano 2018).

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Elaine Chan


Elaine Chan is an Associate Professor of Diversity and Curriculum Studies in the Department of Teaching, Learning, and Teacher Education, College of Education and Human Sciences, University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Her research and teaching are in the areas of: culture and curriculum; multicultural education; immigrant and minority students’ experiences of schooling; teacher knowledge; teacher education; and narrative inquiry. She has taught and conducted long-term, classroom-based research in Canadian, Japanese, and American schools. She received an Early Career Award from the American Educational Research Association (AERA) Narrative Research Special Interest Group (SIG), and publication awards from Division K (Teaching and Teacher Education) and the Narrative Research SIG for her research examining the curricular experiences of students and teachers in diverse school contexts.

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Lauren Gatti

Lauren Gatti, PhD Associate Professor

My research focuses on the intersection of teacher education, teacher education policy, and democratic education. I am particularly interested in how novice English teachers learn to teach within particular policy contexts, whether that is in Lincoln, Nebraska or Chicago, Illinois. I am keenly interested in how we prepare teachers to think historically and critically about what it means to educate (versus “school”) and, relatedly, how we prepare teachers to enact pedagogies and engage students in humanizing and critical ways. My belief is that the hard work of justice-oriented teacher education is unromantic, incremental, and slow but that it is a crucial space of resistance and transformation for both teacher educators and novice teachers.

My work intersects with the larger aims and commitments of the M3 initiative in a couple of important ways: 1) my work is interested in how race, social class, and other kinds of social positionings shape the learning to teach process, and 2) my work is committed to understanding what kinds of programs and pedagogies in teacher preparation might result in more just and equitable experiences for youth in schools, especially racially and linguistically minoritized students.

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Tricia Gray


Dr. Trish Gray is an assistant professor of practice in the department of Teaching, Learning, & Teacher Education. Her pedagogy draws together commitments to collective critical consciousness, democratic education, and constructivism. Her fifteen years as a high school Spanish teacher in contested spaces—including an urban context, a public school located on Tribal lands of the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe, and an exurban community experiencing demographic change—inform her work in meaningful ways. 

Trish’s scholarship addresses how young people construct citizen identities in school and aims to center and amplify the experiences of marginalized young people to inform more equitable and justice-oriented schooling. As a Senior Research Associate with International Consortium for Multilingual Excellence in Education (ICMEE), she develops curriculum and explores questions around teacher learning to better serve multilingual and multicultural learners.

Dr. Gray serves on the leadership team for the CEHS Racial Literacy Roundtables and supports the work of the Teacher Scholars Academy. She is also the faculty sponsor for the UNL chapter of the Nebraska Student Education Association’s Aspiring Educators (NSEA AE) and the Exploring Queer Teacher Identities (EQTI) organization. 

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Edmund (Ted) Hamann

Edmund (Ted) Hamann Professor

Dr. Hamann's primary scholarly interests are in three overlapping areas: (1) how transnational movement of students and families is responded to by schools (particularly movement between the U.S. and Latin America); (2) how educational policies are cultural productions transformed in their conversion to practice (particularly collaboration across tiers of the educational system, like state departments of education working with schools); and (3) how school reform is/is not responsive to various student populations (particularly transnationally mobile students and English language learners). More than 50 of Dr. Hamann's publications, including his graduate students' theses and dissertations, can be accessed through UNL Digital Commons using the search term "Edmund T. Hamann."

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Nicholas E. Husbye


Nicholas E. Husbye is a teacher educator and literacy education researcher in the Department of Teaching, Learning, and Teacher Education in the College of Education and Human Sciences at the University of Nebraska - Lincoln. His research focuses on the training of elementary literacy teachers to enact ambitious teaching in the classroom. Ambitious instruction centers students’ sensemaking within the lesson; for pre-service teachers, this requires an ability to hypothesize the underlying logic students utilize as they build knowledge and skills to wield in the wider world. To this end, pre-service teachers must develop insights into how multilingual and diverse learners construct knowledge, adapting core literacy instruction routines and teaching practices to respond to student thinking to ensure accessible and equitable literacy learning in their classroom.

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Lydiah Kananu Kiramba

Lydiah Kananu Kiramba, PhD Assistant Professor

Dr. Lydiah Kiramba is an assistant professor of educational linguistics at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Dr. Kiramba’s research examines communicative practices of multilingual students in super-diverse classrooms, and, literacies of migrants, immigrants and multilingual populations in K-12 classrooms. Her continuing study investigates multilingual competencies among multilingual children of migrant and refugee backgrounds who are emerging multilinguals (often called ELL). Dr. Kiramba teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in Applied Linguistics, Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages TESOL), and Multilingual education in the department of Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education.

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Amanda Morales

Amanda Morales, PhD assistant professor

Dr. Amanda Morales is an assistant professor in the department of Teaching, Learning, & Teacher Education. Prior to her work at UNL, Dr. Morales was an assistant professor of practice and the diversity coordinator for the College of Education at Kansas State University (KSU). She also served as a program coordinator and manager for several grant-funded recruitment and retention programs for bilingual/bicultural Latino/as in education within KSU’s Center for Intercultural Multilingual Advocacy.

Amanda is the author of over 20 peer-reviewed publications and numerous grant proposals addressing issues of equity and access for culturally and linguistically diverse populations across the PK-16 education continuum. Her current research explores identities of and issues faced by teachers of color in predominately white institutions. Furthermore, she examines the lived experiences of immigrant/ migrant, and multicultural students in mid-West contexts. Amanda earned the 2018 Research on Teacher Diversification Award from AACTE and was named a Great Plains Fellow in 2017.

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Ursula Nguyen

Ursula Nguyen, PhDassistant professor

Ursula Nguyen is an Assistant Professor in Elementary Mathematics Education in the Department of Teaching, Learning & Teacher Education (TLTE), College of Education and Human Sciences at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Her research broadly focuses on issues of equity in STEM education at the intersection of race/ethnicity and gender.

Her current research involves two main lines of inquiry. The first investigates instructional practices that promote equity in STEM. The second centers the views and experiences of historically excluded learners, such as young women and Students of Color, in STEM spaces. As such, she is committed to supporting pre-service teachers in better serving culturally and linguistically diverse students. Dr. Nguyen’s research and teaching commitments stem from her past experiences as a Bilingual learner and educator in Houston, TX.

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Jenelle Reeves

Jenelle Reeves, PhD Associate Professor

Dr. Jenelle Reeves, an associate professor, is a teacher educator and educational researcher whose focus is teachers’ development for multilingual classrooms. She prepares teachers to work with multilingual and English-learning students in K-12 settings, and she coordinates UNL’s K-12 English as a second language (ESL) endorsement and graduate-level Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) certificate programs. Dr. Reeves’ research explores teacher thinking and identity in multilingual school settings. Her publications have appeared in TESOL Quarterly, Linguistics and Education, Teaching and Teacher Education, and Language Teaching Research. She served as co-editor for TESOL Quarterly’s 2016 themed-issue, “Language Teacher Identity in (Multi)lingual Educational Contexts.”

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Loukia K. Sarroub

Loukia K. Sarroub, PhD Professor and Graduate Chair

I am interested in exploring language-in-use and academic literacies as sociolinguistic, cultural, and social phenomena. My scholarship focuses on how young people, their teachers, and families engage in discourse about achievement and how education policy decisions are enacted at all levels of schooling, thus influencing agency among key players (students, parents, teachers, schools).

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Kara Mitchell Viesca


Kara Mitchell Viesca, PhD is an Associate Professor of Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education and focuses her scholarship on advancing equity in the policy and practice of educator development, particularly for teachers of multilingual students.

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Stephanie Wessels

Stephanie Wessels, PhD Associate Professor

Stephanie Wessels is an associate professor at the Department of Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. For the past several years, Dr. Wessels’ coursework, research, and teaching have focused on literacy development for young multilingual learners and their families. She teaches in the areas of early childhood, early literacy, and English as a second language education. Specifically, she is interested in vocabulary development that enhances and extends current academic practices in the primary grade-level classrooms as well as family literacies practices. She has conducted bilingual family literacy programs which built on literacy practices of the home and extended those practices into school-based literacy skills. Currently, she is focusing on digital family literacy programs where multilingual parents become digital storytellers on mobile devices. Along with her colleagues at Kansas State University, she published a book entitled Accelerating literacy for diverse learners: Strategies for the common core classrooms, K-8 with Teacher College Press. In addition, her work has appeared in The Reading Teacher, TESOL Journal, The School Community Journal, Early Childhood Education Journal and Young Children.

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Dr. Theresa Catalano

Interested in collaborating with the M3 Initiative?

Dr. Theresa Catalano