Profiles of Success

Check out the scholarly work that some of our current and former students are currently doing...


Eun You
Social Work

Eun You graduated from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute with a Bachelor's degree in Electrical Engineering in 2005.  She worked as an Information Security Analyst at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York for over 8 years before entering the MSW program at Kean University to pursue a career in social work.

She has been working closely with Dr. Maureen Himchak on a research proposal to evaluate the effectiveness of men's intervention programs that try to expand the notion of hegemonic masculinity in an effort to prevent violence.



Ryan Devaney
Social Work

Ryan Devaney, Co-Vice President of the Social Work Club

Mr. Devaney is a graduate of Kean University, class of 2009 and holds a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education and Psychology, with a certification to teach grades K through 5.  Inspired by his experience as a school teacher and his desire to help others, he decided to enter the MSW Program at Kean.  Combining his background in education with the MSW degree, he strives to provide quality educational opportunities for all students and their families.  After completing his MSW, he is interested in pursuing a Juris Doctorate and specializing in educational laws and advocacy.

Mr. Devaney is committed to community service through his internship at Children’s Specialized Hospital – Case Management Unit and volunteer work with the Social Work Club at St. Joseph’s Social Service Center in Elizabeth, NJ.  Mr. Devaney co-facilitated a “Family Nights” project at St. Joseph’s in the summer of 2014 focused on bringing quality activities ranging from “Robot Making” to “Interactive Games.”  Additionally, he received the Neiman Marcus Best Award for excellence in service and leadership in his employment. 


Marcio Sanches-DaSilva

Social Work

Marcio Sanches-DaSilva, President of the Kean Social Work Club

Marcio Sanches-DaSilva’s personal dream has always involved working with others to elevate social, personal, economic, and spiritual success.  He has worked in the Educational and Criminal Justice fields for the past 15 years.  He found personal satisfaction in teaching, helping, and supporting students in need.  He discovered that in the act of volunteering, teaching and working with others is mutually enriching.  His ability to speak English, Spanish, and Portuguese has allowed him to explore many cultures ultimately broadening his world view.  He is interested in pursuing a career in child welfare and obtaining a Ph.D. in Child Psychology.  He desires to globally elevate child welfare and believes that every child deserves to be cared for with dignity and have equal access to quality education and justice.

Mr. Sanches-DaSilva is committed to community service through his internship at Trinitas Medical Center – Emergency Room/Mobile Crisis Unit and volunteer work with the Social Work Club at St. Joseph’s Social Service Center in Elizabeth, NJ.  Mr. Sanches-DaSilva co-facilitated a “Family Nights” project at St. Joseph’s in the summer of 2014 focused on bringing quality activities ranging from “Robot Making” to “Interactive Games.” 


Gillian Velmer
Speech-Language Pathology

Gillian Velmer is the founder and director of singing groups for people with aphasia at Kean University Center for Communication Disorders and Deafness.  In November 2014 she will present her research on "aphasia choirs" around the world at the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association national conference in Orlando, Florida.  She looks forward to continuing her research on the speech and participation benefits of group singing for people with aphasia.


Lia Pazuelo
Speech-Language Pathology

Lia Pazuelo, a current SLP student, has conducted several research projects including those on various ways of identifying bilingual children with specific language impairment and on structured use of the iPad to address social skills difficulties in children with autism.  Some of her work has been submitted for publication; other studies have been or will be presented at the CUNY Graduate Center Student Research Day and the annual convention of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. 


Megan McGrath
Speech-Language Pathology

Megan McGrath is a graduate student in the Speech-Language Pathology program at Kean University.  She presented her thesis at both Kean University Research Day (2014) and the New Jersey Speech-Language-Hearing Association Convention (2014) and is expected to present at the national level at the annual American-Speech-Language-Hearing Association Convention in November, 2014.  The purpose of this research was to determine whether or not student clinicians and clinical supervisors are in agreement with the roles and responsibilities of clinical supervisors, using selections from the current evidence-based supervision requirements set forth by the profession’s governing body and to identify trends within both groups in regard to personal clinical preferences and expectations.



Kimberly Smela
Speech-Language Pathology

Kimberly Smela is a graduate student in the Speech-Language Pathology Program at Kean University.  She recently completed a study to determine how texting affects a student’s ability to process auditory language.  She presented her research at 

the 2014 Kean University Research Day and 2014 New Jersey Speech-Language-Hearing Association Convention.  She will attend the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association Convention this November to present her work at the national level.




Ruba Qasem
Counselor Education

Several students in the Department of Counselor Education, including Ruba Qasem and Wahidah Conn, will be traveling with Dr. Maria del Carmen Rodriguez to the American Counseling Association conference in the Spring of 2015 to present an education session entitled, East Meets West: Empowering Asian Americans through Healing.






Advanced Studies in Psychology
Doctoral Program in Combined School and Clinical Psychology (Psy.D.) and
Professional Diploma in School Psychology (P.D.)


Most of the PsyD students and many of the Professional Diploma students in the Department of Advanced Studies in Psychology regularly present at annual meetings of professional organizations including the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies, the National Association for School Psychologists, and the Association for School Psychology.  Further, the list of students and program alum with published work is increasingly growing.  Some examples of this work follow

Lindsay Liotta, PsyD has co-authored (with Metro Regional Diagnostic & Treatment Center and Kean University colleagues) a chapter and two journal articles related to her work with children who have experienced sexual abuse and their families.  One of these journal articles is based on her dissertation study and is forthcoming in the Journal of Child Sexual Abuse.

PsyD student Dasa Jendrusakova and colleague Sharon Loeschen just published an article in Familiendynamik entitled Enriching your relationship program through the lens of empirical research.

PsyD student Heather Trachta, along with faculty members in the Departments of Counselor Education and Advanced Studies in Psychology, has an in-press article in the Journal of Behavioral and Social Sciences entitled E-therapy for adolescents in child protection services.

PsyD student Rebecca Smith-Casey co-authored a chapter entitled The Criminalization of Mental Health.  It was published in Sage Publications’ Criminal Justice and Public Policy in 2013.  
















Educational Leadership
Doctorate of Educational Leadership (Ed.D.)
Masters's and Certifications in Educational Administration

Students enrolled in the doctoral program in Educational Leadership are full-time educational professionals.  Typically, our students are principals and assistant principals in some of the largest school districts in the state: Newark, Jersey City, Paterson, Passaic, and Plainfield.  Working full-time while pursuing a doctorate is challenging and our Ed.D. students rise to the challenge.  Most of our doctoral students work in urban school districts and they are passionate about improving the educational opportunities for their students.

The research they undertake is action research – research that is designed to address the specific challenges or opportunities in their schools and school districts.

Some of the research topics students are currently engaged include:

The Impact of Single Gender Classrooms on Student Achievement.

The Relationship Between Laptop Instruction and Student Engagement.

The School to Prison Pipeline: Zero Tolerance Policies and the Criminalization of Youth.

School Improvement Grants: How Federal Dollars Can Make a Difference in Underperforming Schools.

Heterogeneous and Homogenous Grouping: The Impact on Student Achievement.