Upcoming Event

COEKSW Spring Colloquia

Thursday, February 29th from 1:00-2:00 pm | L102 & Zoom

RSVP through the registration form by Wednesday, February 28th

College of Education, Kinesiology, and Social Work is launching a Colloquia Series to provide faculty the platform to share research, creative endeavors, community engagement, and experiences. The event is free and open to all.

Image of Dr. Lauren Fletcher in front of a view of a field of grass and a cloudy grey/blue sky

Dr. Lauren Fletcher


Moving Beyond Doom and Gloom: Inviting Teacher Candidates to Engage in Cycles of Critique, Hope, and Action Around Environmental Justice


In this presentation, Dr. Fletcher delves into the impact of utilizing diverse children's literature on environmentalism in a literacy methods course, exploring how it shapes preservice teachers' (PSTs) perceptions, hope, and actions regarding environmental justice. As PSTs collectively engage with these narratives, she investigated how the stories equip them with the knowledge and skills essential for addressing the challenges of climate change that their students will inherit. Through a focus on storytelling, particularly diverse children's literature, she unravels the nuanced ways PSTs redefine their understanding of hope and activism, both on a personal level and within their teaching practices. This study underscores the pivotal role of children's literature in shaping future educators' environmental literacy and fostering a sense of agency and responsibility.


Dr. Lauren Fletcher is an assistant professor in the Teacher Education Department at California State University, Stanislaus. Her research foci include students' meaning-making processes, culturally sustaining pedagogies in literacy events, and dialogic practices. She explores children's literature and how it expands readers' understanding and actions regarding activism and environmental justice. 

Dr. David Veloz's headshot with grey background

Dr. David Veloz


Examining Perceived Air Quality, Extent of Concern, and Perceived Air Pollution Contributors in Merced and Stanislaus County


The San Joaquin Valley (SJV) consists of eight counties and is known for having the most polluted air in the United States (Billings et al., 2016). Despite this, very few research studies have focused on ambient air quality perception amongst smaller communities in the San Joaquin Valley (SJV) (Brown et al., 2016; Cisneros et al., 2017; Veloz et al., 2020). The presentation will provide a background on air quality and pollution sources. The discussion will encompass the perceptions of air quality among residents in Merced and Stanislaus, along with their expressed concerns. Additionally, It will examine perceptions of air pollution sources and explore whether residing near a major freeway or highway impacts perceptions.


Dr. David Veloz is an assistant professor in the Department of  Kinesiology and Public Health Promotion. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of California, Merced. His primary interest includes the perception of air quality and air pollution sources in the San Joaquin Valley and Environmental Public Health issues that disproportionately affect minority groups. 

Congratulations to Jessica Riojas! Jessica is enrolled in our Ed.D. Leadership Program. Jessica was featured in the Modesto Bee, where she speaks to why is it important for school districts across the Central Valley region and beyond to ensure students of color are able to see “themselves reflected in their K-12 teachers.”

Read Story on Modesto Bee

Updated: February 26, 2024