M.Ed. Student Profile: Devan Church

Name: Devan Church

Twitter: @ChurchDevanBC

Hometown: Salt Lake City, UT

Undergrad Institution & Major: University of Utah, Gender Studies

Favorite Food: Pastrami and Chopped Liver on Rye

Why did you choose the ELP program at the U?: I am very interested in social justice and advocacy in higher education. The ELP program has both theoretical depth and practical concepts built into the curriculum.

What are your dreams for your future? I’d like to work with a Community College or trade education program to bridge the gap between open access institutions and traditional Universities. Ideally, I would be able to work in a place that has strong ties to folk, jazz and blues music – NYC, Philadelphia, Chicago, Kansas City, New Orleans etc….

What is a skill you hope to develop? Break Dancing, Skateboarding, Rhythmic Flow……… Writing(the eternal struggle)! Better Assessment!!!!

What is something unique about you that you would like us to know? I’ve been playing the guitar for 20 years, and studying jazz and blues for 15 years.

Where would you go on a dream vacation if money/time did not enter into your thought process? I’d love to go to New Orleans, followed by a trip to Eastern Europe to document the Slavic accordion and brass band folk music of the region.

What is your favorite place to study/work? Graduate Student Reading Room FTW!

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Educational Leadership & Policy M.Ed. Student Affairs Campus Visit Day

You’re invited!
ELP M.Ed. in Student Affairs Campus Visit Day 2015


We invite prospective students to campus on November 19 from 1 to 7 PM to learn more about the Master’s of Education in Student Affairs.  You will meet faculty, staff, students, and student affairs partners; learn more about courses and internships; and attend a learning experience in the Multiculturalism & Diversity course.

RSVP by Monday, Nov. 16 to Marilynn Howard (Marilynn.howard@utah.edu or 801/581-6714) and please indicate the activities you will be joining.  Also, please let us know of any dietary restrictions you may have.

A sample of the activities for this informative day.

1:00 – 1:45           Welcome – Overview of ELP Department and M.Ed. in Student Affairs

1:45 – 2:55                  Break-out sessions

  • Graduate Assistant Opportunities – meet current GA’s & supervisors
  • Your Current Career & M.Ed. Enrollment – meet students and alumni that engaged in their current higher education position and enrolled in the M.Ed. Degree
  • Meet ELP Faculty
  • Internships – learn more about the internship from students and supervisors

2:55 – 3:30      Refreshment Break to meet ELP Community (students, faculty, staff, alumni, and partners from student affairs)

3:30 – 5:00      Tour of Campus – The University of Utah has a great deal to offer those seeking an engaged graduate experience.  The tour will include the Marriott Library and Student Life Center as well as areas that house the Division of Student Affairs.  Your tour guide is an alumni of the program.

5:00 – 5:35      Further Information on M.Ed. in Student Affairs, Admissions Tips & Questions

5:45 – 7 PM    Course:  Multiculturalism and Diversity – taught by Dr. Maria Ledesma, ELP Assistant Professor

Course Description:  This course is designed to help improve graduate students’ understanding of the major theoretical, research, and practical issues related to multiculturalism and diversity in higher education. The course is helpful to students dealing with policy and/or conducting research that intersects gender, class, race/ethnicity, power, and/or sexuality in higher education. It provides an opportunity for students to become more reflective educational leaders and policymakers by challenging them to critically analyze how higher education influences the experiences of culturally diverse people.
We look forward to sharing the M.Ed. in Student Affairs Degree with you!

Informal Gathering at ASHE 2015

Thinking about your next educational step?  Use opportunities at ASHE, such as this gathering sponsored by the Educational Leadership & Policy Department at the University of Utah, to learn about your options.  Faculty, current students, and alumni will be present to talk about the degree offerings.

As a prospective student attending this event or others, you will learn about educational opportunities, meet people engaged in research, and have fun.  You might talk to faculty about their research or the curriculum for a specific degree program.  Alumni and current students will share their experiences as well as resources that support student success.  Join the University of Utah ELP community on Thursday at 6:30 PM at Hyatt Peaks Lounge to learn more.

ASHE Flyer

Success as a Graduate Student at The University of Utah – Initial Resources

By Dr. Sharon A. Aiken-Wisniewski

Are you a new graduate student at The University of Utah?  Welcome to our campus!  I remember my first days of my graduate program. Some of the best advice I received was to connect with people from across the campus to build my network and utilize resources that support my goals.  Based on these tips, I found that this institution has a vibrant community that is eager to support graduate student success. Now that you are settled into your classes, let me share some additional tips that will contribute to accomplishing your goals.

The University of Utah has a number of libraries located throughout the campus. It is important to familiarize yourself with the wide range of resources that are offered at each location. In addition to traditional library services, you will find workshops on software solutions for research, space dedicated just for graduate students, and resources for all aspects of scholarly writing. Each college has a dedicated librarian who is eager to assist you with your projects. Check out all the options here:  http://www.utah.edu/libraries/index.phpLibrary

If you have not secured your U of U ID Card, please take the time to do this activity.  Your institutional ID is critical for many campus activities, such as the borrowing library resources.  Here’s how to acquire your ID:  http://www.ucard.utah.edu/

Another great resource, which complements your home department and college is the Graduate School.  A variety of general services are provided from travel assistance awards for conference presentations to forms that address academic policy to information on assistantships and fellowships.  The Graduate School works collaboratively with your department and college to guide you through your academic program to the point of graduation. You can familiarize yourself with services and activities at this site:  http://gradschool.utah.edu/current-students/

Finally, connect with the campus, college, and department websites, The Daily Chronicle, and various social media platforms for information on campus events and venues that nurture the whole person.  And, don’t forget to check-out the recently opened Student Life Center for a variety of health and wellness activities that address personal fitness needs.  Music, theater, athletics, and stimulating speakers are just a few of the many opportunities that await you during your graduate education at The University of Utah!

Welcome to the ELP blog!

The mission of the University of Utah Department of Educational Leadership and Policy (ELP), a division of the College of Education, is to prepare ethical researchers, leaders and policy makers in PK-12 through higher education who are informed by comprehensive and empirically-based theory and research, as well as committed to leading educational organizations that enact principles of justice, equity, and excellence for all learners.

The M.Ed. with an emphasis in student affairs provides a broad base on which students may build and advance their careers within higher education. Courses for the M.Ed. with student affairs emphasis cover topics including student affairs administration, contexts of higher education, and professional skill development.

This blog will serve as an interactive community for the M.Ed. program students and alumni, as well as a particularly useful resource for prospective students. The blog will include information about applying to the M.Ed., perspectives from current students and alumni on the program, and a variety of other posts from students and faculty highlighting their research and exploring higher education and student affairs. We welcome contributions and feedback from the ELP community, and look forward to the discussion and communication that this project will provide.