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Graduate School of Education

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Meet GSOE's new assistant dean and director of teacher education

Dr. Sumer Seiki brings a wealth of academic, classroom, and scholarly experience to UCR. Most recently, she was an associate professor of teacher education at University of San Francisco.
By Julie Porter |

The Graduate School of Education (GSOE) welcomes Dr. Sumer Seiki as its new assistant dean and director of GSOE’s teacher education program. In this role, Dr. Seiki will direct UCR’s venerable teacher education program,and will be partnering with schools, communities, and school districts to work towards change.

Dr. Seiki brings a wealth of academic, classroom, and scholarly experience to UCR. Most recently, she was an associate professor of teacher education at University of San Francisco (USF), where she served as a faculty member since 2014. During her time at USF, she coordinated and managed a number of teacher education initiatives: She was the faculty liaison for the Undergraduate Teacher Education Center, where she helped create pipelines from community colleges and undergraduate programs to USF’s teacher credential and master’s program. As co-director of Family Science Collaboratives, she collaborated with local partners to provide access to STEM content alongside family and community members, while training preservice teacher in community cultural wealth science lessons through course work and professional development workshops. She also served as the subcommittee lead on Teacher Performance Assessment (TPA) and Seminar Course Impact in the Teacher Education Department, where she was instrumental in creating support for teacher candidates to pass the new Pearson California Teacher Performance Assessment Cycle 1 & 2 exams, and establishing new support programs and improving current systems to strengthen support for teacher candidates.

Prior to joining USF, Dr. Seiki held academic positions at San José State University, Illinois Wesleyan University, American River College, Woodland Community College, and University of California, Davis (UC Davis). As a researcher, she works extensively with narratives exploring race, ethic studies, community cultural wealth, science, and teacher education. Dr. Seiki recently won the American Education Research Association Early Career Award (AERA) for her research contributions to teacher education and interdisciplinary research.

“Each year, GSOE prepares teachers to return to their communities, and serve as agents of change and inspiration for countless students,” said Interim Dean Louie Rodriguez. “Dr. Sumer Seiki’s scholarly contributions to education, coupled with her years of experience in teaching, breadth of knowledge of California credentialing, and experience building relationships with districts will ensure that we purposefully prepare our future educators. Dr. Seiki has the vision to take our program to another level, and we are thrilled to welcome her to UCR and the GSOE community.”

"I'm excited to be at UCR and GSOE’s teacher education program. This is a moment in history when we can seize an opportunity like never before. We can partner with historically marginalized communities in new and creative ways, while remaining steadfast in our commitment to preparing our teachers to work alongside schools, districts, and communities," said Dr. Seiki.

Dr. Seiki earned her Ph.D. in Science Education, and both her B.S. and M.S. in Plant Biology from UC Davis. She earned her multiple subject teacher credential from the bilingual multicultural teacher education program (BMED) at Sacramento State University.

Established in 1958, UC Riverside Graduate School of Education’s teacher education program prepares critical-thinkers and well-rounded educators who address the needs of all students in culturally responsive ways. GSOE offers dual master’s with credentials, and credential-only degrees. Learn more here.