Meet Our 2023 Outstanding Graduate Students
Every year, The College of Education recognizes outstanding graduate students at the master's and doctoral levels.. We want to congratulate all of our students for their dedication to their education, community, and respective fields.
Outstanding Master's and Doctoral-Level Students
Courtney Dillard is a graduate student in the Health and Human Performance Department and a graduate research assistant for the Metabolic and Applied Physiology Lab. Dillard plans to pursue a Ph.D. in Exercise Science at Texas A&M University starting in the Fall of 2023.
Humberto de Faria Santos
Humberto de Faria Santos is seasoned in the Human Resource Development field, having worked in diverse cultural contexts. His academic and personal curiosity encompasses various areas of knowledge, and he is passionate about helping others thrive through education.
Master's in Student Affairs in Higher Education
Jessica Anderson is a proud mom, wife, and part-time graduate student who works full-time as the Director of Advising Support at Texas Lutheran University while completing her master's in Student Affairs in Higher Education. She is incredibly grateful for the encouraging community of the SAHE program that has nurtured a deeper understanding of how to support and empower college students.
Master's in Elementary Education with a Concentration in Methods and Materials, Teachers Fellows Program
Juliana Blanchard is currently in Cohort 29 of the Texas State Teacher Fellows Graduate program, while simultaneously teaching 21 amazing first-grade students at Rutledge Elementary. In her free time, she enjoys rock climbing, reading, and playing board games.
Master's in School Psychology
After graduating, Raechel plans to continue working in Leander ISD as a Licensed Specialist in School Psychology. In 2019, she graduated with her B.S. in Psychology and Human Development & Family Studies with a certificate in Education & Educational Services from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Jesse Doñes Jr.
Master's in Educational Leadership and Community Leadership
Jesse (Jesus) Doñes has served in various roles throughout his 13 years in public education and is currently the Communications Coordinator for Cactus Ranch Elementary as well as a Lead Facilitator for Integration Education. He is looking forward to working with school districts across the state to provide high-quality professional development, curriculum support, system analysis, and needs-based school improvement.
Christina Gómez Hernández
Ph.D. in School Improvement
Christina Gómez Hernández is a Ph.D. doctoral candidate and a scholar activist in the School Improvement Program in the College of Education at Texas State University. Her dissertation focuses on the emergent bilingual public schooling experiences as a student and as dual language educators. Research interests include language policies, socio-cultural competence, and emergent bilinguals with special needs, such as autism.
Master's in Developmental Education with a Concentration in Learning Support
Joyce Nawara is a Texas Native and a proud first-generation graduate of Texas Lutheran University and Texas State University. She currently works as an advisor with San Antonio Education Partnership and hopes to one day become the director of a postsecondary learning support center.
Master's in Educational Technology
Aaron Peña previously taught at an elementary school and is now employed by the state as an e-Learning Specialist. He is an educational technology enthusiast and plans to use his degree to advocate for individual learners and their diverse needs.