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Faculty/Staff Profiles

The ECS department has recruited a strong, diverse faculty and an exceptional group of graduate students of diverse ethnicities. By building a vibrant, energetic and diverse department, we are able to enjoy an exciting intellectual climate that brings together the insights of many different research traditions and many different groups. We have a mix of critical scholars with overlapping research interests and strong disciplinary roots. One faculty member studies the education of Indigenous people (Cynthia Benally), two are educational sociologists (Leticia Alvarez Gutiérrez, William Smith), one is a curriculum researcher (Karen Johnson), two are educational philosophers (Audrey Thompson, Frank Margonis), one studies Pacific Islander Education (Kēhaulani Vaughn), and two study language and education (Veronica Valdez, Wenyang Sun). Additionally, we have José Gutiérrez who specializes in cognitive development and math education and Frankie Santos Lannan who focuses on college access and success of minoritized students. Added to our research interests, our faculty bring together life experiences of African Americans, American Indians, Chinese, Latinxs/Indigenous, Pacific Islanders, Jewish Americans, and European Americans. The faculty teach a variety of courses focused on the history, social, cultural, feminist, literary, political, economic, and linguistic contexts of BIPOC in the United States and abroad.

 Many of our faculty have strong academic connections in Ethnic Studies & Gender Studies. Dr. William Smith has a joint appointment in the area of African American Studies.

Recent Faculty Publications >>


**contact is available by email only unless phone number is listed**

Dr. Valdez

Veronica Valdez - View Profile
Department Chair, Professor
SAEC 3285
Office Hours:  Tuesdays 2:00pm - 4:00pm and by appointment 



Leticia Alvarez

Leticia Alvarez Gutiérrez- View Profile
Associate Professor, Director of Graduate Studies
SAEC 3295
Office Hours: By appointment

Cynthia Benally

Cynthia Benally - View Profile
Assistant Professor
SAEC 3287
Office Hours: Monday and Wednesdays and Thursdays 3:00pm - 4:00pm and by appointment 

Jose Gutierrez José Francisco Gutiérrez - View Profile
Assistant Professor
SAEC 3283
Office Hours: Tuesdays 1:00pm - 3:00pm and by appointment
Alex Hyres  Alexander Hyres - View Profile
Assistant Professor
SAEC 3271
Office Hours: Wednesdays 11:00am - 2:00pm or by appointment
Frank Margonis

Frank Margonis - View Profile
SAEC 3289
Office Hours: Thursdays 2:00pm - 4:00pm and by appointment

Dr. Laanan Frankie Santos Laanan - View Profile
SAEC 3202E 
Office Hours: By appointment

Will Smith

William Smith - View Profile
SAEC 3286
Office Hours: By appointment

Wenyang Sun 

Wenyang Sun - View Profile
Assistant Professor
Office Hours: Mondays 1:00pm - 3:00pm and by appointment 


Kehaulani Vaughn -View Profile
Assistant Professor
SAEC 3269
Office Hours: Mondays 3:00pm - 4:30pm and by appointment.  

Tuba Yilmaz

Tuba Yilmaz
Assistant Professor (Clinical)
SAEC 3292
Office Hours: Tuesdays 2:30pm - 4:30pm


Jason Newmum

Jason Newnum

Academic Advisor 

SAEC 3282

Office Hours: M, W, Th, F: 8am-5pm;

T: works remotely


Josephine Amoakoh, PhD

Associate Director, APEX Program 


Office Hours: Monday-Friday, 9:am to 5:PM 

Sarah Vorsheck

Sarah Vorsheck

Administrative Assistant

SAEC 3284

Office Hours: M, T, Th, F: 8:15-4:45pm;

W: works remotely






Donna Deyhle Donna Deyhle 
Professor Emerita
Karen Johnson Karen A. Johnson - View Profile
Professor Emerita 

Harvey Kantor

Harvey Kantor - View Profile
Professor Emeritus

Audrey Thompson Audrey Thompson - View Profile
Professor Emerita
SAEC 3285
Office Hours: By appointment
Last Updated: 10/18/23