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Meet Our Students

PhD in Education

The PhD in Education is limited to a cohort of select full-time students who are fully embraced as members of the School of Education. They are engaged, committed individuals with a passion for the field of education, the possibilities it represents and the motivation to respond to its opportunities and challenges.

Cohort 1
Matthew Duvall, Mollie Gambone, Seth Jacobson, Anthony Matranga, Jeaná Morrison

Matthew Duvall

Matthew Duvall (2017 Graduate)

Matthew Duvall graduated from Drexel's PhD program in Educational Leadership Development and Learning Technologies, with an emphasis on STEM education in 2017 and upon graduation, accepted a position as a post-doctoral fellow in Drexel's Entrepreneurial Game Studio.

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Mollie Gambone (2017 Graduate)

Mollie Gambone is a 2017 graduate of Drexel PhD in Educational Leadership Development and Learning Technologies program and is currently the Eexcutive Director of the Progressive Education Lab Fellowship and interim dean of students at the Crefeld School.

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Seth Jacobson

Seth Jacobsen (2017 Graduate)

Seth Jacobson graduated from Drexel's PhD in Educational Leadership Development and Learning Technologies in 2017 and is currently a William Penn Fellow for the Pennsylvania Governor's Office.

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Anthony Matranga

Anthony Matranga (2017 Graduate)

Anthony Matranga is a 2017 graduate of the Educational Leadership Development and Learning Technologies doctoral program and is currently an Assistant Professor of Mathematics Education and Educational Technologies at California State University San Marcos.

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Jeana Morrison

Jeaná Morrison (2018 Graduate)

Jeaná Morrison is a 2018 graduate of Drexel's PhD in Educational Leadership Development and Learning Technologies program and is currently a Postdoctoral Associate at Boston University.

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Cohort 2
Amanda Barany, Jonan Donaldson, Tamara Galoyan, Jessica Novak, Elaine Perignat, Shawnna Thomas-EL

Amanda Barany

Amanda Barany

Amanda Barany is a graduate student in the Educational Leadership and Learning Technologies program. Her research interests focus on the development and implementation of games as learning tools to support engagement, interest, valuing, and identity development around STEM careers.

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Jonan Donaldson - Drexel University Researcher

Jonan Donaldson (2019 Graduate)

Jonan has been an educator for two decades. The first decade was in Osaka, Japan, and in the second decade I taught technologies for teaching and learning in master’s degree programs in Oregon. His research focus involves metaphors of learning in relation to beliefs and practices related to learning. His research also investigates the intersection of learning sciences, creativity, agency, and technology.

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Tamara Galoyan (2019 Graduate)

Tamara Galoyan is from Armenia and is currently enrolled in the Educational Leadership Development and Learning Technologies doctoral program in the School of Education, Drexel University. Her research interests focus on educational technologies, learner cognition, formal and informal learning, game-based learning, and curriculum design. Tamara is also working as a volunteer teacher at the Language Program Department at the International House, Philadelphia.

Prior to entering the program, Tamara earned a Master's degree in TEFL from the American University of Armenia and a Master's degree in Linguistics from the Yerevan State Linguistic University, Armenia.

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Jessica Novak (2019 Graduate)

Jessica is a former middle school and high school STEM teacher with certifications in Elementary Education, Special Education, Middle School Math, Middle School Science, and High School Earth Science.  Jessica attended Providence College and graduated with a BS in Elementary/Special Education and a BS in Psychology with minors in both Mathematics and Science.

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Elaine Perignat

Elaine Perignat (2019 Graduate)

Elaine Perignat’s current research interests focus on Creativity, creative cognitive processes, and creative problem solving pedagogies in STEM curriculum. As a PhD student, Elaine is a graduate assistant and teaches first-year courses for the School of Education, is a member of AERA, and is involved in various student activities on campus.

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Shawnna Thomas-EL

Shawnna Thomas-EL (2019 Graduate)

Shawnna L. Thomas-EL is a PhD student enrolled in Drexel's program in Educational Leadership Development and Learning Technologies. A native of West Philadelphia, Shawnna grew up under the umbrella of University City where advanced education and the integration of research and practical applications were presented as solutions to the issues and challenges that are faced by communities. Intellectually curious and ambitious, she was educated in the Philadelphia School District and enrolled early from a progressive high-school in the Chestnut Hill section of the city into Drexel University where she completed her Bachelor's degree in International Area Studies and her Master's degree in Arts Administration.

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Cohort 3
Alia Ammar, Katelyn Bright Alderfer, Leona Donaldson, Rasheda Likely, Magdalene Moy, Hamideh Talafian

Alia Ammar Drexel University School of Education

Alia Ammar

Alia Ammar is passionate about education, equity, and teaching English Language and Literature.

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Katelyn-Alderfer

Katelyn Bright Alderfer

Katelyn Bright Alderfer is a PhD Candidate at Drexel University in the Educational Leadership and Learning Technologies program.

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Leona-Donaldson

Leona Donaldson

Leona Donaldson is a PhD candidate in the Drexel School of Education. She is majoring in Educational Leadership and Learning Technology and minoring in Entrepreneurship and Innovation.

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Rasheda Likely Drexel University School of Education

Rasheda Likely

Rasheda Likely received her Bachelors of Science and Masters of Science in Biology from the University of North Florida.

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Magdalene Moy Drexel University School of Education

Magdalene Moy

Magdalene Moy is a Ph.D. candidate in the Educational Leadership Development and Learning Technologies doctoral program with a concentration in STEM education.

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Hamideh-Talifian

Hamideh Talafian

Hamideh Talafian is a third year Ph.D. candidate in Educational Leadership and Learning Technologies (STEM concentration) at Drexel University.

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Cohort 4
Brian Delaney, Shadi Dini, Ague Mae Menongsong, Alysha Meloche, Mark Petrovich, Amanda Reinsburrow

Brian Delaney Drexel University School of Education

Brian Delaney

Brian Delaney is a doctoral student in Educational Leadership and Learning Technologies and a Research Assistant in Drexel University’s School of Education.

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Shadi Dini

Shadi Dini

Shadi Dini is a Ph.D. student at Drexel University School of Education.

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Ague Mae Manongsong Drexel University School of Education

Ague Mae Manongsong

Ague Mae Manongsong is a current PhD student and graduate assistant in the Educational Leadership track. Her research interests center on the different applications of mentoring for the purposes of increasing the likelihood of positive career outcomes for minorities, women, minority women, and other marginalized groups.

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Alysha Meloche Drexel University School of Education

Alysha Meloche

Alysha Meloche intends to study approaches to Art that instill creative confidence and identity in students.

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Mark Petrovich PhD Student Drexel University School of Education

Mark Petrovich

Mark Petrovich Jr. is a doctoral candidate and research assistant in the Education program with a concentration in STEM. His research focuses on educational technology, game-based learning, informal learning, identity exploration, and the learning sciences. 

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Amanda Reinsburrow Drexel Unviersity School of Education

Amanda Reinsburrow

Amanda is a former middle and high school mathematics teacher with certifications in mathematics and special education.

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Cohort 5
Guillermo Ibarrola Recalde, Brian McCommons, Mikhail Miller, Monique Woodard

Guillermo Ibarrola Recalde Drexel University School of Education

Guillermo Ibarrola Recalde

Guillermo Ibarrola Recalde received both a Bachelor of Arts in Biology and Chemistry and a Master of Arts in Physical Inorganic Chemistry, Materials and Nanotechnology from Queens College of the City University of New York.

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Brian McCommons Drexel University School of Education

Brian McCommons

Brian is currently enrolled in the Educational Leadership and Policy doctoral program at Drexel University.

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Mikhail Miller Drexel University School of Education

Mikhail Miller

Mikhail Miller is a PhD student in the School of Education whose focus is on STEM education.

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Monique Woodward Drexel University School of Education

Monique Woodard

Monique “Moe” Woodard is an intuitive 3D artist who seeks to bridge the gap between virtual reality and education.

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Cohort 6
Janel Dia, Kathlyn Elliott, Yiyun "Kate" Fan, Christopher Fornaro, Katie Mathew, Kimberly Sterin, Katrina Struloeff

Janel Dia PhD student Drexel University School of Education

Janel Dia

Janel Dia received her Bachelors of Science from the Pennsylvania State University and Masters of Education, TESOL from Eastern University. 

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Kathlyn Elliott PhD student Drexel University School of Education

Kathlyn Elliott

Kathlyn Elliott is a first year PhD student at Drexel University in the Education Leadership and Policy track. 

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Yiyun Fan PhD student Drexel University School of Education

Yiyun "Kate" Fan

Yiyun (Kate) Fan is a PhD student and research assistant at the School of Education.

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Christopher Fornaro PhD student Drexel University School of Education

Christopher Fornaro

Christopher Fornaro received his Bachelor of Science in chemical engineering from Rutgers University and Master of Education from Temple University. After working as a process engineer for roughly three years, he completed an alternative certification program and Master’s degree as a Robert Noyce scholar, funded by a Wachovia grant. 

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Katie Mathew Drexel University School of Education PhD student

Katie Mathew

Katie Mathew received her Bachelors in Psychology and Linguistics from the University of British Columbia.

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Kimberly Sterin PhD student Drexel University School of Education

Kimberly Sterin

Kimberly Sterin believes that education policy should seek to ensure equitable educational opportunities for all students. This belief drove her work as a middle and high school English teacher in two Title I public schools in Montgomery County, Maryland for seven years.

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Katrina Struloeff PhD student Drexel University School of Education

Katrina Struloeff

Katrina Struloeff is an experienced k-12 urban educator with a strong background non-profit operations, educational development, and communications.

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Cohort 7
Dara Bright, Tajma Cameron, Karena Escalante, David Mattson, Sinead Meehan, Neisha Young

Dara Bright Drexel University School of Education PhD student

Dara Bright

Dara Bright is a Ph.D. student at Drexel University in the Education program.

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Tajma Cameron Drexel University School of Education PhD student

Tajma Cameron

My name is Tajma Cameron and I am a first-year Ph.D. student enrolled in Drexel’s program in Educational Leadership and Policy.

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Karena Escalante Drexel University School of Education PhD student

Karena Escalante

Karena Alane Escalante is a Philadelphia-based doctoral student at Drexel University’s School of Education.

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David Mattson Drexel University School of Education PhD Student

David Mattson

David Mattson is a second year PhD student at Drexel University School of Education.

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Sinead Meehan Drexel University School of Education PhD student

Sinead Meehan

Sinead Meehan is a first-year doctoral student in Drexel’s PhD in Education program with a STEM focus as well as a research assistant in Drexel’s School of Education.

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Neisha Young Drexel University School of Education PhD student

Neisha Young

Neisha Young is a doctoral student in Drexel University’s PhD in Education program.

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