Dr. Elizabethe Payne is a critical sociologist of education with research interests in LGBTQ issues in education; gender, sexuality and popularity in schools; the transgender elementary school experience; adolescent lesbian identity, and adolescent lesbian drag king performance. She teaches courses on qualitative research and the LGBTQ experience in schools. Her recent publications include work on the slut discourse and the marking of adolescent womens’ sexuality, and evaluation work on the Reduction of Stigma in Schools program. Dr. Payne serves on the New York State Education Department Dignity for All Students Act Task Force and the Dignity for All Students Act State Policy Group. She was a high school English teacher in Houston, Texas before returning to graduate school.
Dr. Payne began the Reduction of Stigma in Schools (RSIS) program in 2006 as an exploratory effort in utilizing research to create educator professional development trainings in support of LGBTQ students. The research component of the project quickly expanded and the scope of research widened beyond the original intentions of RSIS to include generating new strands of research and addressing critical issues within the field. In 2009, she founded The Queering Education Research Institute.
QuERI Research Fellow and Professional Development Coordinator
2012-2013 QuERI Dissertation Fellow
Research Focus: Teacher Professional Development; Teacher Ally Identities
Melissa J. Smith is a PhD candidate in Cultural Foundations of Education at Syracuse University. Her research interests include teacher professional identity and the experiences of educators who identify themselves as Allies for LGBTQ youth. She served as co-researcher with Dr. Payne for the Reduction of Stigma in Schools evaluation study 2008-2010 and was the first research fellow for QuERI.
Through her work with RSIS, Smith has provided professional development training in schools throughout the Central New York region that aims to inform educators about the school experiences of LGBTQ youth and equip them with knowledge and tools that will empower them to create supportive learning environments for LGBTQ students.
Prior to her doctoral work, Smith was a high school English teacher in Omaha Public Schools (Omaha, Neb.). She holds a M.A. in English from the University of Nebraska.
QuERI Arts Affiliate
Research Focus: Social Justice-Centered Arts Curriculum
Kristin A. Goble is a PhD candidate in the Teaching and Curriculum Department at Syracuse University. Her research interests include adolescent art education, visual culture, gender and social justice within high school visual art curriculum. Goble is currently developing workshops for young students to explore their agency and identity through art making experiences in high schools.
Prior to her doctoral work, Goble was a high school and middle school art teacher in New York City. She holds a MA in Art and Art Education from Columbia University, Teachers College and a BFA in Photography from the University of Michigan. In Fall 2012, She began a new position in the College of Education at University of Wisconsin-Whitewater.
QuERI Research Associate
Research Interest: Masculine female bodies in education spaces, LGBT college student development, LGBT educators, and LGBT issues in teacher preparation programs
Lauren Hannahs earned a M.S. in Higher Education at Syracuse University in Spring 2011. She served as the Graduate Assistant at SU’s LGBT Resource Center while pursuing her masters degree. Lauren received a B.M. in Music Education with a minor in LGBT Studies from Syracuse University. Lauren began work with QuERI after participating in the Queer Kids/Straight Schools course her senior year. She is currently the Assistant Director of Multicultural Affairs and Director of LGBT Affairs at University of Florida.
QuERI GSA Coordinator
Catherine is currently pursuing her Master’s Degree in Higher Education Administration at Syracuse University’s School of Education. Catherine received her B.A. in Economics and Political Science from Nazareth College in Rochester, N.Y. As an undergraduate, Catherine was involved in student activities and student government, as well as was a member of the Equestrian Team. Catherine hopes to work as a college administrator in student development after obtaining her Master’s Degree.
QuERI GSA Coordinator
Kimberly is a Spring 2012 graduate of the Syracuse University School of Education with a dual M.S. in Secondary English education and Inclusive Special Education. Kimberly received her B.A. in English Literature from James Madison University, with a focus on alternative genres and modern literature. Before returning to school to work on her M.A., Kimberly spent a year in schools working in special education classrooms in Hawaii. In Fall 2012, Kimberly will begin her teaching career as a special education teacher in South Carolina.
QuERI Research Fellow
Research Focus: School Policy
Rebecca Johnson is a PhD candidate at Syracuse University in the Cultural Foundations of Education Department with a focus on education policy.
Johnson has been an educational advisor and teacher since 1997. She has taught in public and private schools in the United States and abroad and is a New York State Certified Teacher. In her consulting and professional development work in New York State Schools, she has conducted workshops on inclusive teaching and reducing bias in the school environment. Most recently, she worked at the Center on Education Policy in Washington D.C., researching and current federal education policy.
Johnson holds a B.S. in Economics and Women’s Studies from the University of Wisconsin – Madison and a M.S. in Applied Economics from Cornell University. Starting in Fall 2012, she will be an Assistant Professor of Education at Cazenovia College in Cazenovia, New York.
QuERI Research Associate
Research Focus: Arts Educators’ Experiences in Supporting LGBTQ Youth
Kelly graduated in 2010 from Syracuse University with a B.F.A. in Musical Theatre. While an undergraduate, she co-founded a group of like-minded actors called Community Arts Practice with Professor Stephen Cross that developed socially and politically aware pieces of theatre, including an educational play about high fructose corn syrup and a musical about the issues of gay marriage. They also performed and taught improvisation in Syracuse City School District high schools and middle schools. Kristin has also performed in numerous plays at Syracuse University, the Redhouse Theatre, and the Delavan Art Center and finished her time at Syracuse directing The General of Hot Desire in the Black Box Theatre. Kristin was the Syracuse University 2010-2011 Engagement Fellow in the arts, dedicating a year to QuERI Arts-in-Action projects in performance and visual arts. Kristin is currently working in New York City in a program that uses theatre to develop students’ literacy skills.
Reduction of Stigma in Schools Trainer
Research Focus: School Leadership
Marcia A. Ranieri is a doctoral student at Syracuse University in the Teaching and Leadership Program. Prior to coming to the University, Ranieri was a high school Spanish Teacher and school building leader in a suburban NY district for 8 years. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Spanish education from Geneseo, her Masters in Bilingual Education from the University at Buffalo, and her C.A.S. in Educational Leadership from Syracuse University. Her research interests include social justice leadership, gender, and inclusion. Ranieri is a member of the Reduction of Stigma in Schools Program that is a partnership between Syracuse University and the School of Education, that works with district leaders and classroom teachers to facilitate discussion and create awareness around the issues that LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) students face each day in our schools. In addition, Marcia is the bilingual parent outreach coordinator for the Syracuse University Parent Advocacy Center at Syracuse University. She works to assist bilingual parents in gaining more equitable access for their students with disabilities. Ranieri has received recognition in the field for her work with diversity efforts as well as excellence in teaching. Her current position is an Instructional Administrator in the Guilderland (NY) Central School District.