We are excited to announce the formation of our Graduate Student Advisory Council to support our emerging line of work on race, disability, and equity.

The Graduate Student Advisory Council comprises an impressive and diverse group of five individuals who, from 2024-25, will advise and inform EdTrust’s forthcoming work at the intersection of race and disability across our key P-12 issues. This will help us establish a clearer understanding of and be able to lift up the unique experiences and challenges facing students of color with disabilities.

This is an opportunity to bring in the perspective of the next generation of researchers while also supporting graduate students professionally. While each student’s research focus is different, their work all focuses on supporting students of color with disabilities and their families.

Members of the Graduate Student Advisory Council include graduate students from across the country whose research and areas of focus touch on a diverse swath of disability and education issues. Learn more about them:

Briana Gibson headshotBriana Gibson (she/her) is a graduate student at Howard University in the Educational Leadership and Policy Studies program. Briana has served in various roles within education and held the positions of behaviorist, coach, special education teacher, coordinator, and compliance manager. Currently, Briana is conducting research pertaining to the experiences of African American and Black parents and guardians of children in special education. Her other research interests include intersectionality, culturally responsive teaching and learning, and racial disproportionality in the special education eligibility and identification process.

Deonte Iverson headshotDeonte Iverson (he/him) is a fifth-year doctoral student in the Educational Leadership & Policy Analysis Department at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His dissertation explores Wisconsin’s Department of Public Instruction 2021 decision to change the administrative rule on the eligibility criteria for emotional behavioral disability (EBD) and how practitioners view its impact on their work. His other areas of interests include anti-racist educational leaders, reducing racial inequities in school discipline, and educational equity.

Kourtney Clark headshotKourtney Clark (she/her) is a fourth-year Ph.D. student at the University of Georgia studying Educational Administration and Policy. Her research interests include special education policy, focusing specifically on the intersection of race and disability, teacher expectations, and inclusion of students with disabilities. Prior to her doctoral studies, Kourtney served as a Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS) facilitator and classroom teacher.

Logan McDermott headshotLogan McDermott (he/him) is a doctoral student in the school of education at Johns Hopkins University. His research interests include special education policy and the social construction of disability. His current research focuses on understanding how individual education plan (IEP) teams determine which accommodations students should receive and analyzing disproportionalities in accommodation allocation. Before his doctoral program, Logan worked as a general education math teacher in Ohio and Washington, DC.

Tatianna Zambrano headshotTatianna L. Zambrano (she/her) is a candidate for the Ph.D. in school psychology with a concentration in neurodevelopmental disorders at the University of Florida. Her research focuses on evaluation of assessment practices for identifying children with Autism Spectrum Disorder and evaluating universal mental health practices in school districts. Tatianna has been recognized as a leader in UF’s College of Education, having served as the co-president for the School Psychology Graduate Student Association and other roles within the college. Tatianna is dedicated to service of a diverse range of patients, providing services in hospitals, private practices, and traveling to rural communities. Additionally, she received a B.S. in psychology from the University of Alabama.