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Social Justice Academy Professional Development Series

Spring 2024 Sessions

Supporting Queer and Trans Students in K-16 Classrooms and Building an Intersectional Research Agenda in Education

Mario Suarez, Ph.D. (he/him/él)
Assistant Professor, Cultural Studies at Utah State University

Mario I. Suárez, Ph.D., (he/him/él) is an assistant professor of cultural studies in the School of Teacher Education and Leadership at Utah State University. Mario’s research agenda examines individual, environmental, contextual, and systemic factors that work together (or not) to (re)produce unequal educational outcomes for minoritized populations. He analyzes how these factors shape K-16 spaces through standards, curriculum, and teaching practices for LGBTQ+ and BIPOC students and teachers. To this end, he primarily employs critical quantitative research methods using secondary data analysis, though also draws on qualitative methods and primary data collection when large data are not available. He envisions these factors as metaphorical gears, some larger than others, that sometimes do not fit together and are working against each other, more so for some minoritized populations over others, to create inequality in K-16 spaces. His research has appeared in journals like Educational Researcher and Journal of LGBT Youth, among others, and recently co-edited the book “Trans Studies in K-12 Education: Creating an Agenda for Research and Practice” with Melinda M. Mangin, Ph.D., (Rutgers University) for Harvard Education Press.