MLFTC doctoral students honored with research awards

By

Erik Ketcherside

Two MLFTC doctoral students — Valencia Clement (PhD: Educational Policy and Evaluation) and Amanda Riske (PhD: Learning, Literacies and Technologies) — were recently honored with awards based on their research and merit.

Valencia Clement


Valencia Clement
was awarded an Education Trust-West Russlynn Ali Summer Fellowship. The fellowship program supports people of color entering policy and advocacy leadership by laying the foundation for current and future policymakers, researchers, advocates, and promising African American, Latinx, Asian American or Pacific Islander and Native American or Indigenous educators to become lifelong leaders within California’s pre-K–16 education ecosystem. As the 2021 Anti-Racist Practices Research Fellow, Clement will lead a literature review and research project to ensure that ETW has a deep understanding of current anti-racism frameworks and practices.

Clement, a PhD student in the Educational Policy and Evaluation program, is a Haitian American scholar, artist-activist and scholar from Queens, New York. She has self-published five poetry collections since 2019 on intersectional social justice themes and Haitian culture.   Last year she was named a 2020–21 Race Relations Scholar by ASU’s School of Historical, Philosophical and Religious Studies, and was also awarded a Recovering Truth fellowship through the Center for the Study of Religion and Conflict.

Clement was featured at ASU’s inaugural Diversity and Inclusion Conference in April this year, reading her poem on social justice, “Parasites of the Planet.” The film for her poem was featured at 2ANNAS, the Riga International Short Film Festival in the Baltic states. Clement is the founder of several equity-focused entrepreneurial and social justice initiatives, including Ansanm Mutual Aid, and V’s Bubblery, an artisanal soap company.


Amanda Riske


Amanda Riske
, a PhD student in the Learning, Literacies and Technologies program, is one of 100 women to receive a 2021 Scholar Award from the P.E.O. Sisterhood. These $20,000 merit-based awards are presented to women of the U.S. and Canada who are pursuing a doctoral-level degree at an accredited college or university. This year, nearly 850 women applied for the award — Riske was nominated by the Tempe Chapter X of the sisterhood. Recipients are selected based on their high level of academic achievement and their potential for creating a lasting and positive impact on society.

Riske earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Secondary Education (mathematics) from ASU in 2003. Before returning for her PhD she taught mathematics in Norway, Germany, China and Washington, D.C., and developed a curriculum for a traveling school. While in Norway she earned her Master of Philosophy degree in Comparative International Education from the University of Oslo.

Last year Riske was named one of 10 fellows of the Community for Advancing Discovery Research in Education. Funded by the National Science Foundation, the CADRE fellows program annually provides professional growth opportunities for early career researchers from universities across the U.S. whose work centers on diversity, equity and inclusion in STEM education. Riske’s dissertation focuses on pedagogical practices for the development of data-driven decision-making of students. Her research will inform the creation of a professional development handbook for mathematics teachers on statistical literacy and data justice, an interest fueled by her experience as a mathematics teacher and by the need within society for using data in daily life.