TESOL: Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages

Literacy Education Alumna Becomes Assistant Professor!

USM alumna, Yalda M. Kaveh, has been named an assistant professor in Bilingual Educational at the prestigious Mary Lou Fulton Teachers’ College at the University of Arizona in Tempe. Yalda first came to the University of Southern Maine as an international student from Iran and received her M.S.Ed. in Literacy Education with a concentration in English as a Second Language in 2013.

Before immigrating to the United States for her graduate studies, Dr. Kaveh taught English and Persian to adolescent and adult language learners for several years in her home country, Iran. As an immigrant, Kaveh became interested in language use between parents and children in immigrant communities of which she was a part. In light of this experience, she focused her graduate studies on “family language policies” to understand language development in children of immigrants in relation to communication practices that take place in families but are part of the broader societal, cultural, and educational contexts.

While working toward her graduate degree at USM, Yalda received a Graduate Scholarship and taught Persian to English speaking adults.  Yalda was also a research assistant for “Multi-literacy, Theater, and English Language Learners” conducting ethnographic observations of a theater group while teaching reading. 

“Beside the academic support, the faculty in the MSEd program at USM were incredibly caring. As a newcomer to the United States from a country that was going through economic sanctions, I was dealing with a lot of emotional and financial hardships. My advisor, Dr. Alec Lapidus, spent hours meeting with me in his office, listening to me, and constantly offering resources to help me succeed.”

In 2018, Yalda received her Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction from the Lynch School of Education at Boston College, where shewas also awarded a graduate scholarship and a Dissertation Fellowship.