Alumna Mandy Stewart selected as PDK Emerging Leader

Williamson & Stewart
Patricia Williams of PDK International (left) presents Mandy Stewart with PDK's Outstanding Doctoral Dissertation award at a special reception March 22, 2013.

Mary Amanda Stewart, ('12 Ph.D.) now an assistant professor at Texas Woman's University, has been named a PDK Emerging Leader for her research and advocacy of adolescent English learners, particularly those that are new arrivals, undocumented, or lack formal education.

"Immigrant students possess the skills American children will need to be successful in the 21st century of global connectedness," Stewart said. "We desperately need to tap into that resource instead of pushing it aside due to longstanding racism and misunderstandings of bilingualism in this country."

This year, Stewart was also awarded the PDK Outstanding Dissertation Award and the University of North Texas College of Education Outstanding Dissertation Award. Her dissertation also focused on this issue.

PDK International, the education association that has recognized Stewart as an up-and-coming leader in the K-12 profession, will host Stewart and 25 other education change agents at a weekend networking event this December. The PDK Emerging Leaders will gather in Washington, D.C., meet with federal education policymakers, and share best practices with each other.

"The Emerging Leaders program is our way of paying it forward in public education," said William J. Bushaw, PDK International's executive director. "We find people under 40 who are standouts in the profession and we bring them together for a weekend of networking and expertise-sharing in the nation's capital. By investing in these young leaders, we are investing in the future."

PDK International is an association that represents nearly 30,000 professionals in K-12 education across the country. Every year, it recognizes a new class of PDK Emerging Leaders. For more information on PDK's 2013-2014 Class of Emerging Leaders, go to www.pdkemergingleaders.org. Information about PDK International is at www.pdkintl.org.