Instructional Leadership, emphasis: K-12 School Leadership (MEd)
N A U student sitting at a table outside working on laptop.

Hall of Fame 2020

Outstanding Students

Amarah Abdul-Malik – Outstanding Master’s Student from the Department of Educational Psychology

Abdul-Malik is a dedicated advocate for students and addresses systemic issues. Overall, Ms. Abdul-Malik has been an asset in the practicum lab and in the schools where she worked, and she had an incredible impact on the clients and students she served. Given her counseling and academic excellence, as well as her professional commitment to the PK–12 school system, she will excel in her chosen career path.

Tiana Agdeppa – 2020 COE Distinguished Senior

Tiana is a truly exceptional student. She was an active member of Kappa Delta Pi honors organization and has been a committed volunteer and leader in multiple roles while obtaining her degree with honors. She plans to move back to the Big Island of Hawaii next year. Tiana’s future is bright with plans for a Master of Education program and teaching career.

Joseph Aruguete – Outstanding Doctoral Student from the Department of Educational Psychology

While attending classes, Joseph works at Northern AZ Substance Abuse Services in Flagstaff with court-ordered and voluntary clients. He has a high level of insight, clinical skills, and empathy for his clients. According to his nominator, Joseph Aruguete is one of the kindest humans and one of the most motivated, insightful, and competent students ever encountered.

Jodi Carlson – Outstanding Doctoral Student from the Curriculum and Instruction Program

Jodi is an exceptional doctoral student and embodies the characteristics necessary to be a successful scholar. She excels in all aspects of the program and is highly regarded by students (both undergraduate and graduate) as well as faculty. Jodi embraces all activities with an attitude of making sure she does her best and that she learns from every experience.

Devin Fraley – Graduate Student that has shown Outstanding Achievements in Research

Devin’s intellectual curiosity and research aptitude has positioned him as an academic influencer and impact leader in Arizona and in the STEM scholarship on community college student transfer. His dissertation research is so timely and applicable to the rapidly changing Arizona student demographics and urgent need for leaders in the community college systems. Mr. Devin Fraley represents the scholarly excellence and leadership mindset and skills the CCHE faculty strive to advance through the CCHE specialization.

Cody Kukulski – Graduate Student that has shown Outstanding Achievements in Leadership

Cody came from a family of educators and worked as a paraprofessional in his mother’s second grade classroom. It was there that he discovered his passion for teaching. He held 3 significant positions simultaneously at the Beaver Creek Elementary School in Rimrock, while completing his program requirements. Cody is respected for his intellectual curiosity, leadership skills, classroom expertise and ability to balance his many work responsibilities while excelling in his teacher preparation program.

Maria Marin – Outstanding Doctoral Student from the Department of Educational Leadership

Dr. Maria Marin received her Doctorate in Education Educational Leadership, December 2019. Her findings created powerful implications for practice which were centered on professional development, relationships, support, and the alignment of district initiatives to the standards-based evaluation system, and work of the school principals. Dr. Maria Marin developed and executed a study that was rigorous and relevant, and her findings significantly added to the body of literature related to school leadership.

Winona Miller – Outstanding Undergraduate Student in the College of Education

Winona was called to be a teacher. Her grandmother’s land on the Navajo Nation in New Mexico was provided a school—the same school that Winona and her brothers and cousins walked to. Whenever possible, Winona presented the philosophy and cultural lifeways to her peers and educated hundreds of children at a Title One Elementary School with her interactive weaving center. Winona represents the best of the College of Education because she is responsible, enthusiastic, organized, and dedicated to teaching all children.

Makayla Owens – Outstanding Master’s Student from the Department of Educational Specialties

Makayla Owens has continuously gone above and beyond as a Teaching, Research, and Graduate Assistant, while exhibiting multiple NAU core values and the importance of research, scholarship, and service. She has assisted with several NAU events that celebrate culture, diversity, discovery, and scholarship. Makayla strives to implement instructional design methodologies and innovative technology that best support student engagement in a web-based learning environment. She is deeply involved in creating an action plan for active learning and respectful relationships to increase student achievement.

Noel Trapp – Outstanding Master’s Student from the Department of Educational Psychology

Noel has been an exceptionally dedicated, hardworking, and professional student. He goes above and beyond the course requirements and does excellent work for every assignment. His practicum site supervisor has shared highest praise for his clinical skills and helpful nature, and his clients feel an instant connection and report continued progress with him.

Jeremy Williams – Outstanding Master’s Student from the Department of Educational Leadership

Jeremy is an outstanding leader whose tireless efforts addressed a wide range of educational barriers that face Native Americans at Summit High School, where he holds an administrative position as the Dean of Students. His ability to work effectively with staff and students alike make him a good fit for his position. Jeremy has a family and volunteers as a youth football and basketball coach for their teams.

Brianna Winiesdorffer – Outstanding Undergraduate Student in the College of Education

In addition to being a hardworking, talented, high-achieving teacher candidate, Brianna helped resurrect the languishing Future Teachers Club. She was instrumental in rebranding the growing club into Educators Rising, another student-led organization that continues to evolve and thrive under her leadership and commitment to undergraduate education majors at NAU. Brianna is not only an incredibly promising young dual certified teacher, but she is truly an asset to the College of Education and the Flagstaff community.

Faculty and Staff Awards

The Colleen Noble Rice Commitment to Student Success Award: This award is presented to a staff member for their commitment to student success.

Nicole Bies-Hernandez – Data Reporting and Assessment Specialists, Professional Education Programs (PEP)

Since beginning in her role with PEP in November 2017, Dr. Nicole Bies-Hernandez has proven her strong commitment to student success through her ongoing collaboration with initial teacher preparation and advanced education program faculty through the review of signature assignments to ensure these performance assessments are focused on meaningful, authentic tasks and are examined in relation to fairness. Additionally, she continues to provide significant reporting support for the Recruitment and Retention Committee to allow for data-informed decisions related to strategies being implemented and tracking of key student demographics. Dr. Bies-Hernandez has demonstrated high-level data verification and technical skills serving as the primary functional owner of the online applications completed by approximately 1400 students annually who are applying for entry to a teacher preparation program or are applying for a student teaching placement. There is no manual to complete this work, and she continues to exhibit significant problem-solving skills to minimize the issues students encounter. Dr. Bies-Hernandez led key data reporting initiatives related to the large-scale implementation of the Arizona Teachers Academy. In one year, the program has grown from 160 students to over 850. Her strong collaboration and communication skills in addition to her technical expertise has allowed for the creation of detailed data reports and processes that have provided the critical double check of student agreements, ability to extract and validate reports needed for ABOR, and the means to troubleshoot student issues as they arise. Her work truly demonstrates the values expressed through the Colleen Noble Rice Award for Commitment to Student Success.

David A. Williams Award for Innovation: This award recognizes educators who build on David Williams’ (former COE Award for Innovation Dean) legacy for innovative ideas, research, or programs.

Gilbert Accelerated School Leader Partnership (Educational Leadership Faculty)

Gilbert Accelerated School Leader Partnership offers the entire educational leadership curriculum over a sixteen-month period with students enrolling in the 36-credit master’s degree and completing a course each month with a capstone experience (principal internship) completed in the last four months. We had a 100% completion rate for this cohort and significantly increased the number of highly prepared leaders in that district.

Schools and school districts need effective leaders like never before to take on the challenges and opportunities facing education today and in the future. The College of Education’s Department of Educational Leadership graduating class of 2020 includes some of the most well-prepared graduates to take on these challenges. In January 2019, the department implemented an innovative Accelerated MEd in Educational Leadership that welcomed 14 eager students. These students were experienced classroom teachers from various east valley districts who have a sincere desire to make a difference in the lives of their students, families, staff, and communities while taking on the daunting task involved with school leadership.

The Accelerated Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership, hosted by the Gilbert School District, moved the students through eleven master’s-level courses in twelve months. These courses met 2 weekends each month with field work and personal learning during the week. The capstone event of the master’s program was a six-month internship with an experienced, respected principal within their district supported by an NAU supervisor. During Megan Callahan’s final internship presentation recently, she shared, “This experience has been like nothing I would have ever dreamed of! We all worked so hard and cannot believe it is the end of such an amazing experience. I also wanted to say every single one of you has taught me so much, and we have gained life-long friends and colleagues.”

Students were guided through the program by respected full and part-time professors, all of whom are NAU alumni, with successful careers as principals or superintendents. Dr. Gayle Blanchard, one of NAU’s full-time faculty working with the cohort, expressed, “Serving as an instructor for the accelerated cohort has been such a rewarding and motivating experience. The students in this program consistently inspire me by their commitment and aspirations in developing their leadership skills.” Due to the hard work and dedication of both faculty and students, the entire cohort is graduating!

The job of school leaders is continuing to dramatically change. The high turnover rate of principals nationwide points to the complexities, responsibilities, and relentless pressures and stress of the job. Aspiring school leaders need high-quality principal preparation programs at the university level with real-world, relevant job-related programs that meet this growing demand. We are proud of our principal preparation program and of our students. We wish them all the best as they prepare for interviews as school leaders in the fall. We are confident in them and know they are prepared and ready to make a difference in the lives of students, families, staff, and the communities they serve!

2020 College of Education Teacher of the Year: This award is presented to an outstanding teacher in the College of Education who shows commitment to being a teacher.  COE faculty and staff nominate their peers and vote, and the President’s Office will announce this recognition to the broader community.

Sarah Kondratuk – Lecturer from the College of Education Department of Teaching and Learning

Sarah Kondratuk has 23 years of experience teaching pre-K through 3rd grade and has been teaching full-time for NAU-COE-T&L mountain campus since she was hired in 2013. She teaches 4 classes each semester as a clinical faculty member. Her focus area is in Early Childhood Curriculum and Assessment. Sarah has consistently earned outstanding evaluations from her students and comments about how inspiring she is. Sarah has also earned the respect of her colleagues as she models integration of current technologies, including but not limited to cell phones and iPads within her methods classes, and shares this with other faculty. Sarah is one of those veteran teachers who makes a big difference for her students because of her habits of including student experiences within the learning process and respecting each and every one as a holder of knowledge. Sarah’s classes celebrate diversity as they build a climate of inclusivity and respect from the first day of class through the last one. Sarah chairs the TARIAT committee that plans and carries out the professional development conference for our students each April. Sarah has also been the America Reads Faculty Advisor, which requires the placement and mentoring of each of the more than 30 students who participate in this program as well as the liaison who work with each of the Flagstaff schools. Sarah also serves as a National Board Candidate Mentor through NAU’s K-12 Center, and she participates in the LAUNCH program’s Early Childhood meetings. Sarah is an exemplary teacher who models innovation and care.

Promotion and Tenure – Effective August 2020

Shadow Armfield – Promotion to Professor – Department of Educational Specialties

Karyn Blair – Promotion to Clinical Professor – Department of Educational Leadership

Shane Haberstroh – Promotion to Professor – Department of Educational Psychology

Laura Michael-Blocher – Promotion to Senior Lecturer – Department of Teaching and Learning

Anthony Osborn – Promotion to Associate Clinical Professor – Department of Educational Specialties

Claudia Rodas – Promotion to Associate Clinical Professor – Department of Educational Specialties

Shawn Thomas – Promotion to Senior Lecturer – Department of Teaching and Learning