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Global Update: Newsletter of the International & Comparative Education Program at Teachers College, Columbia University

Message from the Program Director

Dear Students, Alumni, Faculty, and Friends of the ICEd Program, 

We hope you enjoyed the Winter Break! It was wonderful to see so many of our current students and alumni at CIES Regional Conference in beautiful Monterrey in October. We hope to see many of you again at CIES 2024 in Miami.

As this newsletter shows, our students, faculty and alumni are thriving and pursuing meaningful work to make a local and international impact in education. I feel proud and privileged to be part of this global family. Despite the current conflicts and challenges that our world is facing, the program would like to celebrate the contributions each of you are making to promote justice and equality. 

To help us to continue to share alumni profiles and updates for the newsletter, please take this short survey for you to update your contact information, share your interests, and any good news to share with the community.

I hope you enjoy this newsletter edition and the news about the fantastic TC community accomplishments. For more regular updates about ICEd between issues of the newsletter, please follow us on X/Twitter at @TC_ICeducation, Instagram, and on Facebook.

Best wishes for the new year!

Garnett Russell
Associate Professor and Director, ICEd

Program News

Environmental Justice Needs Inclusive Science Education

Through TC’s Center for Sustainable Futures, as well as the Science Education and International and Comparative Education programs, researchers and advocates at the College are the intersections between climate change and its impact on marginalized communities.

As the impact of climate change is already felt — especially by marginalized people who have fewer resources to rebuild their lives when disaster strikes — the need for justice-driven climate education is more apparent than ever. And when teachers are tasked with preparing the students who will continue the battle for environmental justice head on, how can we best prepare them? 


CICE Celebrates its 25th anniversary with a new issue

In celebration of Current Issues in Comparative Education’s (CICE) 25th anniversary, the Special Issue theme was “Comparative and International Education in Turbulent Times”. The spirit was to engage and discuss the role of CIE in the face of the ongoing challenges that the world is facing: climate change, the rise of right-wing movements, the disruption of artificial intelligence, the post-pandemic consequences, the impact of forced migration and the refugee crisis, and so forth. As a result, the Special Issue  includes various articles looking at the impacts of COVID-19 on female educators and students, the critical role of Socio-Emotional Learning in the Refugee context, the importance of including a racial perspective when teaching climate change, and much more. Go ahead and check it out here!

Education Policy Research By, For, and With Indigenous Peoples in Canada, Mexico, and the United States

This past summer Faculty and students of the International and Comparative Education (ICEd) Program organized and participated in multiple research projects across a wide range of educational topics. Education Policy Research By, For, and With Indigenous Peoples in Canada, Mexico, and the United States is a publication project by scholars Dr. Teresa McCarty, Dr. Angelina Castagno, Dr. Regina Cortina, Dr. Michelle Pidgeon, and Dr. Lorena Sanchez Tyson.

The American Education Research Association will publish this collaboration in the Handbook of Education Policy Research, 2nd Volume (forthcoming) edited by Dr. Lora Cohen-Vogel, Dr. Janelle Scott, and Dr. Peter Youngs.

This collaborative research project offers a critical analysis of education policy research by, for, and with the 34 million Indigenous Peoples in the vast region occupied by Canada, Mexico, and the United States (US).


Transitional Justice and Education in Colombia

This research is led by Professor S. Garnett Russell, the Director of the ICEd Program. Alongside Faculty lecturer Dr. Daniela Romero-Amaya, two doctoral students, and two master’s students, they traveled to Medellin, Colombia, to conduct a 2-day workshop for school teachers and principals on preliminary findings from an ongoing 3-year-long research study on education, transitional justice, and peacebuilding.

This project seeks to analyze the relationship between transitional justice and education across secondary-level schools in Colombia. Working with 12 schools across three regions, we explore the experiences of students and teachers when discussing the Colombian armed conflict and the peace process, as well as when promoting the pillars of justice, reparation, reconciliation, and non-repetition in the classroom.

A version in Spanish of this story is available in our website. Una versión en español de esta noticia está disponible en la web.


Ubumwe: Exploring Arts for Education and Psychosocial Support with Refugee Children and Youth in Uganda

The Ubumwe: Exploring Arts for Education and Psychosocial Support with Refugee Children and Youth Project, funded by Columbia World Projects, set out to explore how the arts can be integrated in both formal education and broader community spaces to bolster psychosocial well-being, academic achievement, social cohesion, and peace among the refugee and host communities in the Kyangwali settlement in western Uganda. The Ubumwe project, which means “unity” in Kinyabwisha, was initiated at the request of a school leader running a community-based school in Kyangwali who believed that art education has the power to change the students’ experiences by promoting creative expression, collaboration, and reflection. The concept of Ubumwe also reflects this initiative’s multi-partner, interdisciplinary, and collaborative effort, which includes Teachers College (represented by Dr. Mary Mendenhall and doctoral student Kemigisha Richardson), Columbia’s Mailman School of Public Health, Building African Communities Opportunities (BACO) Foundation, Hopelink Action Foundation (HAF) Uganda, AfriChild Center at Makerere University, and two New York City-based arts organizations, Artolution and Arts Ignite.

Student and Alumni Highlights

ICE at CIES 2023 Western Regional Conference

This October, our program faculty and students attended the 2023 CIES Western Regional Conference. The conference theme was “Education, Migration & Human Rights: Intersecting the Local and Global”, held at Monterrey, California. This CIES regional conference gathered more than 150 scholars and practitioners, including a large number of ICEd members, as at every CIES conference. 


Enabling Access to Quality Education Through Technology

TC alum Muhamad Iman Usman builds ed tech startup to serve millions across Southeast Asia


Welcome New Doctoral Students – Fall 2023!

The International and Comparative Education (ICEd) Program is proud to welcome a new cohort of doctoral students to our vibrant doctoral program! We are looking forward to working with and learning from them in the coming years. In addition to the various reasons for joining the program, each of our new students is undertaking research across a wide range of topics and regions.


These 2023 Education Graduates Embody the Spirit of TC

Meet a handful of standout education graduates and learn what drives them and where they’re heading next.


Congratulations to our new graduates!

We are proud of the many graduates who completed their Masters’ and Doctoral Degrees this year. We wish you the very best in your future endeavors! Read more about our doctoral graduates' experiences here: 2023 PhDone!


Congratulations to all our students for their achievements in the 2022-2023 academic year!

The International and Comparative Education students and graduates have been wildly successful this academic year! We have over 40 congratulations to dole out and are thrilled to highlight a few! 

Faculty Highlights

Professor Steiner-Khamsi gave a keynote address at Iceland’s Annual Conference of Educational Research

On September 28th, Professor Gita Steiner-Khamsi delivered a keynote speech on education reform to Iceland’s education research association. The keynote took place during the first day of Menntakvika: Annual Conference of Educational Research in Iceland and was featured as well as live-streamed in Visir, the country’s largest newspaper.


Professor Regina Cortina was awarded for her trajectory in I&CE at the IV Congress of the Sociedad Iberoamericana de Educación Comparada in Mexico City

On September 27, Professor Regina Cortina in our International and Comparative Education program was recognized "for her transcendent contributions to Comparative Education and the defense of the rights of girls and women" at the IV Congress of the Sociedad Iberoamericana de Educación Comparada (SIBEC). The Congress took place at the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), in Mexico City.


10 Year Anniversary: Professors Garnett, Mary, and Oren!

The International and Comparative Education (ICEd) Program celebrates the 10 anniversary of three Faculty: Dr. Garnett Russell, Dr. Mary Mendenhall, and Dr. Oren Pizmony-Levy!


Welcome, New Faculty 2023!

The International and Comparative Education (ICEd) Program is proud to welcome and to celebrate our new faculty of 2023: Dr. Prem Phyak, Dr. Manuel Cardoso, and Dr. Daniela Romero-Amaya!

Guest Speakers

A Conversation with Dr. Martín Benavides, Director of IIEP-UNESCO

The Education Across the Americas Fall 2023 Course had the pleasure of welcoming as a guest lecturer the Director of UNESCO’s International Institute for Educational Planning (IIEP) and Former Minister of Education of Peru, Dr. Martín Benavides. It was an insightful opportunity to discuss education policymaking in Peru, his experience while being a Minister of Education during the COVID-19 pandemic, and his ongoing work at the IIEP-UNESCO. This is the second time Dr. Benavides has participated as a guest speaker for the Education Across the Americas course. 


Alumni Profiles

Please complete this short survey if you would like your profile to be featured on the ICEd Program’s website. If your profile is featured but outdated, please fill out the survey again for us to update your information. 

Thank you! Stay tuned for the Spring 2024 newsletter!

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