AAAL 2024 Award Recipients


Book Award
Jerry Won Lee | University of California Irvine

Jerry Won Lee is a Professor in the Department of English at the University of California, Irvine, where he currently serves as the Director of the Program in Global Languages & Communication. In addition to Locating Translingualism (Cambridge University Press, 2022), his other books include Language as Hope, co-authored with Daniel N. Silva and also published with Cambridge University Press (2024). He is currently co-editing, alongside Li Wei, Ofelia García, and Prem Phyak, the Handbook of Translanguaging (under contract with Wiley-Blackwell).

Locating Translingualism

Dissertation Award
Christian Fallas-Escobar | Universidad Nacional de Costa Rica

Christian Fallas-Escobar self-identifies as a Latino, bilingual, language-in-education scholar who works at the intersection of critical applied linguistics and anthropology of education. His research centers on bilingual, Latina/o teacher candidates’ negotiation of identity at the nexus of language and race within multilingual/multicultural settings. His work examines language-related tensions within educational institutions, as well as how institutionalized language ideologies become reinscribed and contested in home/community spaces. He approaches this line of inquiry using critical ethnography and critical discourse analysis. He currently works as associate professor of applied linguistics at Universidad Nacional de Costa Rica, where he is involved in the preparation of English teachers.

Distinguished Public Service Award
Leslie Villegas | New America

Leslie Villegas is a senior policy analyst with the Education Policy program at New America, where she focuses on the PreK–12 policy landscape for English learners. Her work focuses on incorporating an equity- and asset-based approach into federal and state education policy through accountability, assessment, funding, and other key policy areas. Inspired by her own experiences as a first-generation Mexican immigrant raised in California, Villegas believes equitable access to quality education is the key to creating a more fair, inclusive, and representative society.

Villegas started her career in public policy working in the California legislature advising various elected officials. She has dedicated the last decade to advancing progressive policies that support marginalized communities through a variety of roles in government, academia, and think tanks.

Prior to joining New America, Villegas worked at the Migration Policy Institute, where she conducted research on the impact of federal education policy on state level accountability for English learner public education services, and consulted on projects focused on integration policy for refugees and asylum seekers for the GLIMER Consortium at the University of Edinburgh.

She holds a master’s degree in international development from the University of Edinburgh and a bachelor’s degree in political science from California State University, Sacramento.

Distinguished Service and/or Engaged Research Graduate Student Award in Relation to Diversity Efforts
Kelly Baur | Arizona State University

Kelly Baur is a documentary filmmaker and community organizer who dreams of a future with no police and no borders. She is currently pursuing a PhD in Linguistics/Applied Linguistics at Arizona State University.

Distinguished Scholarship and Service Award
Kendall King | University of Minnesota

Kendall A. King is Professor of Multilingual Education and Director of Graduate Studies at the University of Minnesota, where she teaches and conducts research in the areas of applied linguistics and language teaching and learning. She holds an M.A. and a Ph.D. in Educational Linguistics from the University of Pennsylvania, where she researched Quechua language loss and revitalization in the Ecuadorian Andes. Professor King has served as a faculty member at New York University, Georgetown University, and Stockholm University. She is also Past President of the American Association of Applied Linguistics (2020-2021), where she led multiple efforts to support greater equity, inclusion, and access within the organization.
Professor King’s scholarship focuses on speakers of minoritized languages, and critically examines the policies that often fail to serve them as well as practices which best support linguistic diversity and speakers of those languages. Central to all her work is equity and attention to speakers of minoritized languages. Within her (now) home state of Minnesota, she has collaborated with lawmakers and advocated to draft and pass progressive legislation supporting multilingual education and currently leads funded projects to increase equity and access to state seals of bilingualism. In addition to her many academic journal articles and books, she has written multiple op-ed pieces in regional and national newspapers, published articles and books for multilingual parents, and participated widely in media and community events supporting multilingualism.  She has served as Editor of the leading journal, Language Policy and is a highly engaged scholar active across multiple networks, organizations, and boards. 

Graduate Student Award
Aisha Barise | McGill University
Aisha is a PhD candidate in Language Education at McGill University. She is working to map the complex relations between multilingual politics and poetics, drawing on the work of radical thinkers in Black and African studies, this work aims to unsettle critical issues of linguistic/tongue (dis)possession, (un)belonging, (in-)security, (anti-)essentialism, and reclamation for the diaspora.

Graduate Student Award
Simon Bauer | University of Gothenburg

Simon Bauer is a PhD candidate in Multilingualism at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden. His research interests revolve around questions of power, resistance, and the discursive construction of Self-Other, drawing theoretically and methodologically on critical discourse analysis and discourse ethnography. He has a background in Sociology as well as Arabic and Middle Eastern Studies and is currently writing up his doctoral thesis on the state provided course “Civic Orientation for Newly Arrived Migrants” in which he critically analyses discourses pertaining to citizenship, belonging, and discursive constructions of Self-Other on multiple levels combining qualitative and quantitative approaches. His work has appeared in journals such as Critical Discourse Studies, Citizenship Studies, Social Inclusion, and the Nordic Journal of Migration Research, and he has presented widely at international Linguistics, Migration, and Education conferences.

Graduate Student Award
Saurav Goswami | Georgetown University

I joined the PhD program after 11 years of work in curriculum development, writing centre administration, and critical writing tutoring. Since then, I’ve explored how language learning and usage intersect with an assortment of factors, such as topos and place-experience, high-altitude remoteness, the job market, in identity work, and through legal discourse. I am currently interested in language acquisition and/as queerness. I want to study narratives of language learning among adult queer English learners in northeastern India, where I grew up. I hope to find out how multilingual (queer) identities are sustained by language learning in this and other neglected regions, amid complex discourses of border (in)security, ethnolinguistic mobilizations, and homophobia, in the era of resurgent Hindutva nationalism. 

Graduate Student Award
Yuanheng Wang | Penn State

Yuanheng (Arthur) Wang is a Ph.D. candidate in Applied Linguistics at The Pennslyvania State University. His research interests and areas of specialization include corpus linguistics; genre theory, research, analysis, and pedagogy; second language writing; and language teacher education. For over a decade, Arthur has taught cumulatively hundreds of undergraduate students, graduate teacher candidates, and adult learners in courses such as ESL freshman composition, English language analysis, TESL Methods, Teaching Second Language Writing, and Integrated ESL. He has also mentored ESL and EFL teachers at secondary and university levels, both in the U.S. and internationally. Currently a member of the Student Editorial Board of English for Specific Purposes (ESPJ), Arthur has published his research in journals including ESPJ, Journal of English for Academic Purposes, Corpus-based Studies across Humanities, and Research Methods in Applied Linguistics. 

Graduate Student Award | Duolingo Award
Lisa Lackner | University of Toronto

Lisa Lackner is a PhD Candidate in the Languages and Literacies in Education program at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto. She holds an M.A. in German as a Second or Foreign language from the University of Vienna and has prior experience as middle school teacher in Vienna. Her research interests include language policy, second language learning/teaching and multilingualism with a particular focus on how language policies can function as sites to uphold and contest racialized ideologies of monolingualism as the ideal. For her dissertation research, she is currently conducting a language policy ethnography by investigating how ESL policy is appropriated in Ontario secondary schools.

Graduate Student Award | Duolingo Award
Julia Spiegelman | University of Massachusetts Boston

Julia Donnelly Spiegelman is a critical applied linguist, French teacher, and anti-bias teacher educator whose research seeks to understand and counter the workings of racism and transphobia in world language classroom contexts. She is currently a Ph.D. Candidate in Applied Linguistics at University of Massachusetts Boston. Julia’s dissertation investigates the contexts, agency, and investment of gender nonbinary adolescent learners navigating cisnormativity and binary grammatical gender in their French and Spanish classrooms. Julia’s work has been published in Applied Linguistics, L2 Journal, The French Review, Critical Multilingualism Studies, and International Journal of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism. Julia has been solicited to give lectures and workshops on trans-inclusive language teaching by universities and organizations in the US and Canada, including the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL), the Massachusetts Foreign Language Association (MAFLA), and the Institut de Français UBC à Québec. She currently teaches at Boston University Wheelock College of Education & Human Development and at Longy School of Music of Bard College. Julia is a longtime faculty member at the Multicultural Teaching Institute, where she works with K-12 teachers to develop awareness of their own identities and engage anti-bias pedagogies in their classrooms.

Graduate Student Award | ETS Award
Hongye Zeng | University of Maryland College Park

I am a Ph.D. candidate in Language, Literacy, and Social Inquiry (LLSI) at University of Maryland. Being a bilingual myself and a teacher serving many K-12 multilingual learners transnationally leads to my passion in literacy pedagogies that can highlight resourcefulness and voices of diverse learners who are often silenced in classrooms. My research focuses on using digital multimodal writing to promote adolescent multilingual learners’ writing engagement and growth. I have enacted my ideas in a summer literacy program serving local diverse communities since 2022. I am also interested in inviting multiliteracies and multimodalities in literacy and language teacher education programs, responding to the expanding territories of literacy and development of technology. I started to bring these new perspectives into my teaching and mentoring of pre-service teachers. Advocating the potential, creativity, and joy of multilingual learners as writers, and preparing future teachers to challenge and update current monolingual, monomodal writing curriculum are two goals for my research and teaching practices. 

Graduate Student Award | Grabe/Stoller Award
Sophia Minnillo | University of California Davis

Sophia Minnillo is a PhD candidate in Linguistics at University of California, Davis with a designated emphasis in Writing, Rhetoric, and Composition. Her research focuses on second and heritage language learning, writing, pedagogy, and assessment. She also studies multilingual identities and experiences during international education and study abroad. Many of her projects are situated within the field of learner corpus research, and she is a member of the Corpus of Written Spanish- L2 and Heritage (COWS-L2H) team. Her work can be found in Research in Corpus Linguistics, Journal of Spanish Language Teaching, and in press at the International Journal of Learner Corpus Research.

Graduate Student Award | GSA-JEDI Award
Lyana Sun Han Chang | Penn State

Lyana Sun Han Chang is a PhD candidate in Applied Linguistics at The Pennsylvania State University. Her experiences growing up with an undocumented status in the United States motivated her to conduct collaborative and action-oriented research with minoritized and racialized immigrants. Her research focuses on the relationships between immigrant intersectional identities, immigrant reclaimant narratives, and mainstream discourse on immigrants within the context of undocumented status. Lyana is interested in understanding how immigrants with an undocumented status negotiate self and imposed identities and navigate public discourses which otherize racialized immigrants. Informed by her research, Lyana developed the UNDOCU Storytelling Webinar Series for Community and Representation at Penn State, and she is currently creating an “Illegalized Repository”, a virtual space to house diverse and minoritized immigrant-created reclaimant narratives.

Graduate Student Award | Multilingual Matters Award
Monica Shank Lauwo | University of British Columbia

Monica Shank Lauwo is a PhD candidate in Language and Literacy Education at the University of British Columbia. As an educator, teacher educator, and researcher, she is centrally interested in ways in which language and literacy can be mobilized to disrupt inequitable systems of power, and to support antiracist, decolonial struggles. Her research interests include translanguaging, multiliteracies, identity, teacher education, critical literacy, and language ideologies, in Tanzania, Kenya, and Canada.

Graduate Student Award | NFMLTA/MLJ Award
Harumi Maeda | Stanford University

I am a PhD candidate in Japanese Linguistics in the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures at Stanford University. My primary research interest lies in exploring ways to promote mutual understanding among people whose backgrounds differ by language, age, culture, and/or health condition. I draw on theories and frameworks of applied linguistics and interactional sociolinguistics to understand how language education and research can help individuals and communities move beyond pervasive preconceptions toward more meaningful communication. I am a co-author of the recently published article “On an even playing field of haiku making: An inclusive activity of creative verbal art” by Matsumoto, Maeda, Wan, and Liao in Pragmatics and Society (15-1).

Graduate Student Award | NFMLTA/MLJ Award
Caitlyn Pineault | Georgetown University

Caitlyn Pineault is a doctoral student in Applied Linguistics at Georgetown University. Prior to beginning her graduate work, Caitlyn was an elementary and high school Spanish teacher. Presently, her research interests include instructed second language acquisition, task-based language teaching, heritage language studies, and the researcher-practitioner interface. Her co-authored work can be found in the Modern Language Journal and the Foreign Language Annals. At Georgetown, she is a research assistant at the Assessment and Evaluation Language Resource Center (AELRC) and the co-lead instructor of the Georgetown-STARTALK 2024 teacher-training program on task-based language teaching. She is also the current project assistant for the TBLT Language Learning Task Bank.

Graduate Student Award | Wilga Rivers Award
Olessya Akimenko | Simon Fraser University

Olessya Akimenko is a fifth-year PhD candidate in the Languages, Cultures, and Literacies program at Simon Fraser University (SFU), exploring the employment experiences and identity negotiations of English as an additional language (EAL) teachers in British Columbia, Canada. Her motivation for this research stems from her firsthand experience as an EAL teacher, witnessing the hardships this group faces. Moreover, there is a notable dearth of studies investigating the experiences of EAL teachers in Canada. Olessya’s doctoral study aims to fill this gap by delving into the identity negotiations and employment opportunities for EAL teachers in Canada, employing a rigorous theoretical framework and considering multiple stakeholder perspectives. 

In her PhD program, Olessya have completed core coursework, a comprehensive examination, and successfully conducted data collection for her study, which involved surveying and interviewing EAL teachers, adult EAL students, and EAL program administrators. Currently, Olessya is actively engaged in data analysis and dissertation writing, with the goal of completing and defending her thesis in Fall 2024.

Furthermore, Olessya recently introduced the innovative languacultural landscape methodology, showcasing it in multiple conferences and securing publication in the OLBI Journal. As a research assistant, Olessya contributed to multiple SFU-based research projects like, e.g., the investigation of perceptions of good writing in an internationalized economics department. In addition, her teaching portfolio includes courses like EDUC471 Curriculum Development, EDUC100W Selected Questions and Issues in Education, and FALX99 Foundations of Academic Literacy.

Indigenous Language Scholarship Support Fund
Lorena Alarcon | University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Lorena Alarcon is a Ph.D. student in Spanish Linguistics, Second Language Acquisition, and Teacher Education at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her research interests include language testing and assessment, indigenous language revitalization and maintenance,  sociolinguistics, and language instruction.

Indigenous Language Scholarship Support Fund
Jacqueline Campo| University of Massachusetts Boston

Jacqueline Campo is a Quechua second-year PhD student in Applied Linguistics at the University of Massachusetts Boston. She holds a MA in Applied Linguistics with a concentration in bilingual education and foreign language pedagogy and a BA in Linguistics at the National University of San Marcos, Peru. Her research interests are language navigation in relation to indigenous identities in urban and immigrant spaces.  

Indigenous Language Scholarship Support Fund
Nimasha Malalasekera | University of Montreal, Canada

Nimasha Malalasekera is a PhD Candidate in Anthropology (Ethnolinguistics) at University of Montreal, Canada. Her current research, which is funded by the Fonds de Recherche du Québec – Société et Culture, examines the interrelations between linguistic ideology (and broader sociocultural ideologies), discursive practices, and language structure focusing on the endangered Vedda language and culture of indigenous Adivasi (‘Veddas’) of Dambana in Sri Lanka. She has earned an M.A. in Applied Linguistics (Second Language Acquisition and Teacher Education) at University of Alaska Fairbanks, USA and a B.A. in English at University of Colombo, Sri Lanka. Her research interests concern language ideology, language policy and planning, endangered languages, and languages and cultures of South Asia. 

Indigenous Language Scholarship Support Fund
Paul Meighan-Chiblow | McGill University

Pòl Miadhachàin-Chiblow (Paul Meighan-Chiblow) is a Gàidheal (Scottish Gael), born and raised in Glasgow, Scotland. He is a critical sociolinguist and holds a PhD in Educational Studies (2023) from McGill University. His interdisciplinary research focuses on multilingual and multicultural education, language revitalization, culturally responsive pedagogies, and language policy. Following a kincentric methodology, his doctoral research introduced and investigated the TEK-nology (Traditional Ecological Knowledge and technology) Indigenous language and knowledge acquisition approach with participants from his married family’s Anishinaabe community. His AAAL 2024 presentation is titled “Community members as decision-makers: Online language planning for Indigenous language revitalization and cultural reclamation”. Paul would like to thank AAAL, his family, the project participants, and all who have supported him on this lifelong learning journey.

Indigenous Language Scholarship Support Fund
Shaila Sultana | University of Dhaka, Bangladesh

Shaila Sultana is a Professor and the former Head of the Department of English Language, Institute of Modern Languages, University of Dhaka, Bangladesh. She has published extensively in different top-tiered peer-reviewed international journals. Her recent publications include a co-authored book Popular Culture, Voice and Linguistic Diversity and a co-edited handbook titled Routledge Handbook of English Language Education in Bangladesh, Language in Society in Bangladesh and Beyond: Voices from the Global South (2023) and a Special Issue of Australian Review of Applied Linguistics titled ‘Translingual practices entangled with semiotised space and time’. She is on the editorial boards of Language in Society (Cambridge University Press), Journal of English-medium Instruction (John Benjamins), Ampersand (Elsevier), Journal of AsiaTEFL, Crossing, Journal of BELTA, and other journals.

Research Article Award
Katie Bernstein | Arizona State University

Katie Bernstein is an applied linguist, early childhood education researcher, and associate professor in Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College at Arizona State University. Katie studies young multilingual children and the contexts that shape their learning—from peer interactions to teacher language ideologies to state language policies. When Katie isn’t fighting bad educational language policies in Arizona, she enjoys discourse analysis, rock climbing, and attending AAAL conferences. Katie was winner of the 2016 AAAL dissertation award and is grateful for this new recognition from her favorite professional organization.

Research Article Award

Claudia Cervantes-Soon | Arizona State University

Claudia Cervantes-Soon, Ph.D. is Associate Professor of Bilingual Education at Arizona State University and a former K-12 bilingual educator. Her research draws on ethnographic approaches, decolonial theory, critical pedagogies, and Chicana/Latina feminisms to examine sociocultural, pedagogical, and policy factors affecting the educational experiences of children, youth, and families from historically marginalized communities, particularly in bilingual, bicultural, and borderlands communities. She is the author of the award-winning book, Juárez Girls Rising: Transformative Education in Times of Dystopia, and is co-editor of the recently published book, Critical Consciousness in Dual Language Bilingual Education: Case Studies on Policy and Practice. 

Research Article Award

Yalda Kaveh | Arizona State University

Yalda M. Kaveh is an assistant professor of Bilingual Education at the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College at Arizona State University. Her work focuses on language policy, bi/multilingualism in (im)migrant families, family engagement in education, and culturally sustaining pedagogies. She is particularly interested in the forms of power, such as race, ethnicity, gender, class, and religion, shaping language ideologies and policies in schools, families, and communities. Her scholarship highlights the role of racialized and minoritized communities in language planning by conceptualizing language policy at multiple societal levels and through a range of theoretical and methodological orientations. Yalda’s work has been published in applied linguistic journals such as Language Policy, International Multilingual Research Journal, Linguistics and Education, Bilingual Research Journal, and TESOL Quarterly. 


Research Article Award

Saida Mohamed | Arizona State University

Saida H. Mohamed recently graduated with a Ph.D. from Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College at Arizona State University. Her work focuses on the intersections between literacies, languages, religion, and migration. Her dissertation study investigated ways in which Somali refugee families living in Kenya experienced and negotiated their religious and secular identities through literacies. Saida is particularly interested in the literacy experiences of children who simultaneously participate in Qur’anic and school literacy. Using a range of theoretical and methodological orientations, she highlights ways in which religious literacies shape children’s literate identities in schools, families, and communities. Saida’s work has been published in applied linguistic journals such as Language Policy, International Multilingual Research Journal, and TESOL Quarterly. 

Research Article Award

Sara Rodríguez-Martínez | Arizona State University

Sara Rodríguez-Martínez is a Borikua Taíno woman and a doctoral candidate at Arizona State University's Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College. Sara's scholarship is informed by critical and decolonial frameworks, through which she explores the social and sociopolitical implications of language policy, language ideologies, and multilingualism. Sara's dissertation work focuses on young civically active Puerto Ricans' orientation towards the English language and its use, exploring the role English plays in Puerto Rico's activism and public policy discourse. Through qualitative methods that reject colonial conceptions of knowledge and expertise, Sara explores the ways in which community language use can both reinforce and challenge settler colonial ideologies and values. Sara's work has been published in education research journals such as Language and Education, International Multilingual Research Journal, and Race, Ethnicity and Education.

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