Dr. Miriam Ezzani is one of the newest additions to the College of Education. She comes to Texas Christian University from the University of North Texas, where she was a faculty member of Education. Her research and teaching focus on culturally responsive leadership within the context of the district and school reform. Her recent publications include:
- “Culturally relevant leadership: Advancing critical consciousness in American Muslim students. Educational Administration Quarterly.”
- “A principal’s approach to leadership for social justice: Advancing reflective and anti-oppressive practices. Journal of School Leadership.”
Q&A with Professor Miriam Ezzani
Q: What does it mean to commit to diversity and Inclusive excellence?
A: “Speaking from the perspective of a teacher-scholar, and in the words of the Dalai Lama, a great teacher educates minds but also remembers to educate hearts. This belief is anchored in the essence of the courses I teach, where diversity, equity, and inclusion are essential to the content. Teaching and learning require humility and the understanding that everyone, including the professor, is engaged in learning. Therefore, a fundamental belief that I articulate to students each semester is that grades, a manifestation of student learning, are excellent when students have multiple opportunities to learn. Of equal importance is the efforts toward relationship building between professors and students. These broad concepts help me to stay grounded and committed to excellence in diversity and inclusion.”
Q: What do you most enjoy about your position at Texas Christian University?
A: “Being faculty in the College of Education at TCU has been nothing short of enjoyable! The first thing that struck me, and one of the reasons why I accepted the position, was the high level of participation in my research presentation during my interview. I was amazed and humbled by this experience. Second of all, kindness is the operative word and the best way to describe how individuals (students, staff, faculty, administrators) interact with one another at TCU. This culture opens up all kinds of possibilities.”
Q: How have your experiences at Texas Christian University shaped you into an ethical leader?
A: “My experience with ethics began with my personal experiences and upbringing, watching the ethical behaviors of my parents. This extended to my professional experiences as a teacher to students, from historically marginalized populations, in the inner city of Los Angeles. At that time I considered myself a leader in the classroom and thus I did everything possible to develop critical thinkers. Ultimately, I became a school leader where ethics was integral in the policies and initiatives I put forth, and the practices that I encouraged and supported. Now as a scholar who studies culturally responsive leadership, I see ethics as shaped by how one is either passive or active in their learning. I’m also aware that one’s individual (in)experiences and the influences of systemic policies and practices shape one’s knowledge, whether it be valid, misconceived, or assumed. Hence, knowledge should be filtered through an ethical lens, possible only when professors guide students toward critical thinking, self-examination, and soul searching.”