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Program Faculty

Program Co-Coordinator: Alexios Rosario-Moore, PhD Heading link

Alexios Rosario-Moore

Alexios Rosario-Moore is a clinical associate professor of educational policy studies and the co-coordinator of the MEd in Urban Higher Education. His research focuses on racial and socioeconomic equity in secondary and post-secondary education through an integrated analysis of federal and state policy, organizational theory, and decision-making among school leaders, parents, and students. Alexios has held leadership roles in dual-enrollment programs in New York and in New Orleans where he founded a college bridge program for opportunity youth. Since moving to Chicago, he has participated in local policy initiatives related to racial equity in school leadership, school facilities planning, and school funding.

He is currently a Student Affairs Faculty Research Fellow at UIC and a Senior Fellow with Chicago United for Equity.

Program Co-Coordinator: Celina Sima, PhD Heading link

Celina Sima

Celina M. Sima (PhD, Northwestern University) is Visiting Associate Professor in Educational Policy Studies and Program Coordinator for the MEd in Urban Higher Education. Dr. Sima has held leadership roles in academic affairs, student affairs, and administrative services at the college and university levels. Dr. Sima’s institutional research is on higher education policy and planning and includes the examination of academic advising, minority student retention and success, general education in the undergraduate curriculum, evaluation of mechanisms for the improvement of undergraduate student transfer and faculty retention strategies. Dr. Sima has taught research designs for policy, public sector strategic planning, organization and administration of higher education, history of higher education and student development theory and has taught in the College of Education’s Urban Education Leadership program.

Danny Lambouths III, MA, MEd Heading link

Danny Lambouths headshot

Danny Lambouths III is an Assistant Director in the UIC Office of Institutional Research (OIR) and also is the Special Advisor to the Provost. In this dual role, he is responsible for managing data-related projects as defined by the Provost. Danny has been with the Office of Institutional Research for three years. Prior to working with OIR, Danny was a full-time Sociology doctoral student. Danny earned an M.Ed. in Measurement, Evaluation, Statistics, and Assessment and Youth Development and an M.A. in Sociology, all from UIC.

Maria Luna-Duarte, PhD Heading link

Maria Luna-Duarte headshot

Dr. María E. Luna-Duarte, grew up undocumented in Chicago until the age of 21. She pursued a bachelor’s degree in Sociology and a minor in Women and Gender Studies, and later a Master’s degree in Educational Leadership at Northeastern Illinois University. She completed her Ph.D. in Policy Studies in Urban Education from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Early in her career, she worked at the Consulate General of México in Chicago in their legal department. After a few years she transitioned to work as the Community Liaison for the Chicago ENLACE Partnership, a W.K. Kellogg Foundation grant to increase the educational attainment of Latinos from K-16. Upon the completion of the grant, she transitioned to work as the Coordinator of Student Support Services, at Northeastern Illinois University El Centro campus, was later promoted to Assistant Director and then Director. She was the director at Northeastern Illinois University El Centro for over twelve years and an adjunct faculty for the ENLACE Higher Education Program for the past four years. Currently, she serves as the Associate Dean of Student Success and Clinical Assistant Professor, Educational Policy Studies. Her moral principles are founded in hard work and dedication. Her mission is to transform the lives of minoritized populations to provide access and opportunities for higher education to be able to find their passion and become successful professionals.

Maria Luna-Duarte’s Profile Page

Mark Martell, PhD Heading link

Mark Martell

Mark R. Martell (PhD, University of Illinois at Chicago) is adjunct faculty in Educational Policy Studies, Faculty Fellow in the UIC Honors College, and Affiliated Faculty at the UIC Global Asian Studies Program. He became the director of the UIC Asian American Resource and Cultural Center in January 2015. Mark’s doctoral research explored the racialized experiences of UIC Asian American students and the effects on their student success. Mark is also co-principal investigator for the UIC Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander-Serving Institutions Initiative, where he assists in facilitating grant programs and assists in teaching Asian American courses. He also teaches Asian Americans in Pop Culture, Superheroes and Cultural Mythology, and Comics & Society at the UIC Honors College.  Mark has served as Co-Chair for the Chancellor’s Committee on the Status of Asian Americans and has served various campus organizations including AARCC’s Advisory Board. In addition to participating in a number of Chicago’s Asian American, LGBTQ, and theatre organizations, Mark has taught at Harold Washington College and for the UIC College of Education and Asian American Studies.

Gordon Palmer, PhD Heading link

Gordon Palmer headshot

Gordon Palmer (PhD, Higher Education and Psychology, University of Michigan) joined the Department of Educational Policy Studies as a Bridge-to-the-Faculty Fellow in Fall 2021. Dr. Palmer’s work is motivated by an effort to understand how Black people transform the places that they occupy into more just and compassionate places through meaning-making, cultural ideologies, compassionate relationships, and acts of justice. His emerging program of research broadly focuses on 1) examining the sociopolitical development of Black urban residents—with a particular focus on Black women college and graduate students—through innovative critical qualitative placed-based methodologies and 2) examining how parents, mentors, and spirituality influence the well-being and persistence of Black peoples generally and Black university students specifically. He takes on this work as someone dedicated to ethical, rigorous, and reciprocal research practices aimed at transforming the extant higher education understanding of urban residing Black students in the US into one that is more emic and inclusive.

Gordon Palmer’s Profile Page

Benjamin Superfine, PhD Heading link

Benjamin Superfine

Benjamin Superfine (JD, PhD, University of Michigan) is a Professor and Department Chair of the Educational Policy Studies department and teaches classes for PhD, EdD, and MEd students in the Educational Organization and Leadership and Urban Education Leadership programs. Dr. Superfine’s research focuses on the history of education law and policy, school finance reform, standards-based reform and accountability, and teacher evaluation. His research is interdisciplinary and addresses educational issues through the lenses of law, history, and social science. He teaches classes on the history, development, implementation, and analysis of education policy, in addition to the foundations of education research. Dr. Superfine is also the founder and Director of the Research on Urban Education Policy Initiative (RUEPI). RUEPI is a project at the UIC College of Education that is aimed at fostering more informed dialogue and decision-making about education policy in Chicago and other urban areas.

Marc VanOverbeke, PhD Heading link

Marc VanOverbeke

Marc VanOverbeke (PhD, University of Wisconsin, Madison) is an associate professor in the Department of Educational Policy Studies, and Associate Dean for Academic Affairs for the UIC College of Education. His professional training and research focus on the history of higher education.  In particular, he has addressed the connections between higher education and secondary education and the ways in which the two educational levels have worked together, competed with each other, and influenced and shaped each other.  While his methodological focus is history, Dr. VanOverbeke also explores the policy implications that arise from this historical perspective.  He is a corresponding editorial board member for the History of Education Quarterly (UK), and is a member of the Executive Committee of the International Standing Conference for the History of Education (ISCHE).