Equipped to Lead and Succeed

School of Education Welcomes New Faculty

Meet the School of Education's new faculty members, and find out why they are excited to join the SOE community.

by School of Education

The School of Education is excited to welcome Dr. Seenae Chong, Leadership Studies Department; Dr. Ria DasGupta, Leadership Studies Department; and Dr. Jason D. Reynolds (Taewon Choi), Counseling Psychology Department as new faculty to the USF School of Education. They join David Philoxene, the 2020-21 Gerardo Marín Dissertation Fellow, who is working with the Teacher Education Department and the School of Education's new Center for Humanizing Education and Research (C-HER). Learn more about their work, and what excites them about joining the School of Education.


Dr. Seenae Chong

Dr. Seenae Chong joins the Leadership Studies Department. Chong's scholarship explores the policy, organizational, and interpersonal conditions that nourish or impede just, caring relationships between communities, families, and schools. Her research interests and commitments are informed by the relationships she had with young people and their families as a special education teacher and an after-school provider. Previously, she served as the Postdoctoral Scholar on USF's California School Discipline Project, a statewide qualitative study that examined school discipline, climate, and culture across California, as well as an adjunct professor in the USF Leadership Studies Department. She received her PhD from UC Berkeley's Graduate School of Education, her teaching credential in Mild to Moderate Disabilities from San Francisco State University, and her master's degree from Harvard Graduate School of Education.

“In any interaction I have with School of Education (SOE) students, staff, and faculty, I always learn something new about how to dream, think, and act in ways that move us toward a better world for all people,” says Chong. “The SOE community offers solidarity, hope, and creativity and I am grateful to be able to teach and conduct research in this space.”


Dr. Ria DasGupta

Dr. Ria DasGupta joins the Leadership Studies Department. Dr. DasGupta earned her doctorate from the USF International and Multicultural Education (IME) Department. Her research focuses on diversity, equity, and inclusion in the context of neoliberalism. She most recently served as the Diversity and Community Relations Program Manager in the USF Office of Diversity Engagement and Community Outreach.DasGupta also teaches kathak, a South Asian classical dance form, and is an ensemble dancer with The Leela Dance Collective.

“Being part of the SOE community has always meant being part of a family,” says Dr. DasGupta. “I am so excited, and feel so fortunate, to be able to continue the journey with my SOE family that started in the summer of 2015 when I stepped into my first IME class. I'm honored to work with SOE staff and faculty this year, during such a unique time, to support our students as we all develop as educators and practitioners whose collective work is centered in care, empathy, and justice.”


Dr. Jason D. Reynolds

Dr. Jason D. Reynolds (Taewon Choi), Counseling Psychology Department, spent the last four years working at Seton Hall University in the counseling psychology doctoral program. He received his PhD in counseling psychology from Fordham University. His research interests are in the areas of transracial adoption, identity development, mentorship, the treatment of complex trauma, psychobiography and qualitative research methods, and social justice training. He has practiced in various settings in New York City and Boston, MA including university counseling centers, public and private schools, an inpatient psychiatric hospital in the Bronx, a community hospital in Cambridge, MA, and a private foster care and adoption agency. He currently works part-time in a group practice serving the community. Reynolds is excited to join the SOE to stand with and learn from the inspiring faculty and students in the fight for social justice through advocacy, activism, and disrupting the status quo.


David Philoxene

David Philoxene is the 2020-21 Gerardo Marín Dissertation Fellow. Philoxene joins the Teacher Education Department and the School of Education’s new Center for Humanizing Education and Research (C-HER). Philoxene is a PhD candidate in UC Berkeley's Graduate School of Education. His research focuses on geographies of race and violence, including how Black youth experience, locate, and create safety. His dissertation employs interviews and youth mapping artifacts to examine the sense- and spatial-making practices of Black youth who navigate violence across schooling and neighborhood in Oakland, California. He is committed to (re)telling stories of resistance, survival, and possibility, and studying educational and community spaces that exemplify this. An Oakland native, he has spent the last 15 years in youth spaces in a variety of roles, from classroom teacher, school design-team member, teacher supervisor, and researcher. He has a BA in Sociology and African American Studies from UC Berkeley, a MEd and Secondary Teaching Credential from UCLA, and has been an NIH/NIGMS Predoctoral Fellow at UCSF and Chancellor’s Fellow at UC Berkeley.

I’m definitely excited to be a part of this broader learning community, and working with folks whose work I respect,” says Philoxene. “As a Bay Area native, I’ve watched from afar as the USF Teacher Education Department has built a generative space to engage critical issues within education and schooling. And given this historical moment, I look forward to seeing how the community continues to engage issues of anti-Blackness, including helping teacher-candidates feel equipped to do this work (effectively) within schools with our children. Moreover, I’m also affiliated with C-HER on campus, and look forward to seeing this space grow, especially after the wonderful conversations that were had at the end of the summer.”

Additionally, the School of Education is excited to welcome Dr. Daniela Domínguez and Dr. David Donahue into new roles.

Dr. Daniela Domínguez, who has been serving as the faculty program coordinator for the Marriage and Family Therapy (MFT) program in Santa Rosa, continues her work in the School of Education in a tenure-track position this fall. Domínguez will continue teaching and conducting research in Santa Rosa and Sonoma County as the MFT Program Coordinator and Research Director for the Hanna Institute. Her research focuses on Latinx mental health with a special interest in immigration and LGBTQIA+ matters.

After completing his term as Director of the The Leo T. McCarthy Center for Public Service and the Common Good, Dr. David Donahue joins the School of Education for a joint appointment in the International and Multicultural Education (IME) Department and General Education (GEDU) Department. Donahue’s research interests include community engaged teaching and learning, arts integrated teaching and learning, and LGBTQIA+ issues in education. He has published on topics including service-learning in higher education, human rights, diversity, and personal identity.