2011 Educational Technology Graduate Award winners

Every year, students who have shown outstanding achievement in the area of their study are selected as recipients of the Educational Technology Graduate Award. For the first time, there are two winners selected by the Educational Technology faculty and their peers.

The 2011 Educational Technology Graduate Award goes to Lisa Costello and Kavita Mehta. Their hard work and dedication are an inspiration for all Educational Technology students and faculty.

Lisa Costello


Lisa Costello was born in Tempe, Arizona, and has lived there most of her life.  She is a single mom to Anthony, who is stationed with the Army overseas, and her daughter, Theresa, who lives here in Arizona.

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Lisa received her BAE in Elementary Education from Arizona State University, and her MEd in Elementary Education from Northern Arizona University.  According to Lisa, completing her MEd in Educational Technology has provided her with a sense of self-satisfaction and pride. 

Lisa has worked for the past sixteen years in the Roosevelt School District 66 in Phoenix, Arizona, where she is an ELL 4th grade instructor. She has worked many different positions during these years, but there are two that she has cherished most: mentoring new teachers in her district, and working as a faculty adviser for Teach for America.    

Lisa’s final capstone project was an interactive, collaborative, online wiki course designed for younger elementary school children.  The topic dealt with cyber safety and digital citizenship, and was intended as an uncomplicated and trouble-free course for teachers to put together and implement. 

This engaging unit was supported by constructivist and networked learning strategies, and also housed a community resource section with further sources for parents and staff. 

Contact Lisa at LCostello03@aol.com.  



Kavita Mehta


Born and brought up in New Delhi, India, Kavita started her master’s in educational technology one and a half years ago. She obtained her bachelor’s and master’s degrees with top honors from Delhi University. She has been working in the technology department at an international school for the last twelve years in New Delhi.

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Coming from a totally different cultural, financial, and educational background, Kavita is proud that she created an "impossible" goal and believed in it to make it a reality. According to Kavita, she learned and discovered a great deal about herself and technology through this journey.

“I met new people from different cultures,” says Kavita. “It’s been a great experience of learning and sharing. It was a wonderful positive online learning environment. I felt valued by my instructors, peers, and group mates in the same way that I would value my own efforts.  I feel that my entire program of study has prepared me in multiple ways to achieve my goals. I am really grateful to this program for not only enhancing my love and desire of education, but also for opening my eyes to many new technological aspects and skills, and helping me grow to continue my journey as a lifelong learner.”

Kavita feels strongly about her capstone project, “Professional Development of Instructional Assistants.” She offers individual training and leads workshops after school or during in-service days to instructional assistants (IAs).

Her goal is to make them aware of technology tools and the advantages of teaching and learning with them. She uses presentations, FTF, hands-on training, videos, and resources like Moodle to bring IAs up to par with the community and help them feel comfortable utilizing these tools independently.

Contact Kavita at kavitasmehta@gmail.com.