Joanna O. Masingila Named Interim Dean-Designate of the School of Education

Joanna Masingila

Joanna Masingila

Syracuse University Interim Chancellor and Vice Chancellor and Provost Eric F. Spina has named Joanna O. Masingila interim dean-designate of the School of Education. A professor of mathematics education and mathematics, Masingila is a Meredith Professor for Teaching Excellence and holds a dual appointment in the School of Education and The College of Arts and Sciences. She currently serves as the chair of the school’s largest department, Teaching and Leadership. Masingila will formally assume the role of interim dean on Jan. 31, 2014.

Douglas P. Biklen, who has served as dean of the School of Education since 2005, had announced in February his plans to retire in early 2014.

“Dr. Masingila brings great breadth and depth of experience and expertise to this position,” says Spina. “She is a highly effective and respected teacher and researcher whose work has attracted significant grant support and is having real impact on communities and in professional practice. Through her dual faculty roles in the School of Education and The College of Arts and Sciences, and as the lead faculty member in accreditation of teacher preparation programs across Syracuse University, Joanna has gained considerable perspective on effective academic and administrative practice.

“Joanna will be an effective and collaborative leader of the School of Education, and I know she will work very well both within and outside the school,” he continues.

Masingila says she is honored to be asked to lead the School of Education through this period of change. “This is an important time of transition with the arrival of a new chancellor and extraordinary challenges in the field of education, such as rapid changes in technology, shrinking resources for schools and increasing school accountability, while at the same time, schools must prepare learners to be engaged and productive citizens of the world,” she says.

“As interim dean-designate, I realize that this is not the time for us to pause, but to continue the advances being made within the School of Education,” Masingila continues. “As a scholar and a leader, Doug Biklen has done an outstanding job in leading the School of Education with passion and a commitment to excellence in research, social justice and urban education; I thank him and wish him all the best.”

“I am looking forward to working with the outstanding faculty and staff in the School of Education to turn these challenges into opportunities and to continue the school’s excellence in inclusive education, preparing educational leaders, fostering innovative use of technology and working with global partners on important educational issues.”

Dean Biklen has high praise for Professor Masingila and says he is delighted she has agreed to serve as interim dean. “Dr. Masingila has extensive experience in inclusive urban education, as well as with global initiatives, and is an internationally respected teacher and scholar. The school will be in good hands,” Biklen says.

Masingila’s research interests include teacher development, teacher-educator development, mathematical knowledge for teaching teachers and students’ out-of-school mathematics practice. She has been the principal investigator or co-principal investigator on approximately $5.6 million in research grants, including six from the National Science Foundation and two from the U.S. Agency for International Development. She is widely published in journals and books, and has developed a number of multimedia case studies examining issues in teaching practice.

In 1998, Masingila was a Fulbright Scholar to Kenyatta University in Nairobi, Kenya, and in 2011 she returned there as a visiting professor for six months.

Masingila says her goal is to lead the school to meet the challenges of collaborative leadership and scholarship in the field of education through innovation, collaboration and research. “Together we can turn these challenges into opportunities to share our scholarly work and teaching expertise with the larger community and to best serve the students in the School of Education,” she says.

Masingila is a graduate of Goshen College and Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis. She received a Ph.D. in mathematics education from Indiana University-Bloomington.