New leadership for UB's teacher education programs

BY DANIELLE LEGARE

Portrait of Julie Gorlewski.

Julie Gorlewski
Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Teacher Education

Julie Gorlewski has been named senior associate dean for academic affairs and teacher education in the Graduate School of Education. Gorlewski, who is a professor and the former chair of the Department of Learning and Instruction, transitioned into this newly created role over the summer.

As senior associate dean, Gorlewski will oversee GSE’s growing teacher preparation programs and strengthen collaborative efforts with local schools to better prepare and retain teachers throughout New York State. Additional contributions will include advances in research, increased attention to community needs and extended clinical experiences—all of which are based on a vision of teacher education as an endeavor that is shared among university, school and community stakeholders.

“Julie Gorlewski is a visionary leader,” said Suzanne Rosenblith, GSE dean and professor. “She is committed to improving relationships between schools and universities and is engaged in meaningful research that will not only benefit GSE and improve our teacher preparation programs, but will also benefit the communities and schools with which we partner.”

Gorlewski has served as the chair of UB’s Department of Learning and Instruction since 2018. A proponent of university-based and community-centered teacher education that is focused on the impact on learners, Gorlewski studies issues of equity, literacy, and the cultivation of critical dispositions with preservice and practicing teachers.

“I look forward to moving into a role that will involve continued efforts to improve the preparation of teachers. The role represents an investment in the potential for teacher education to be a lever for transformation toward equity and justice and improved student achievement for all learners,” said Gorlewski.

“GSE has the vision to embed community engagement to increase faculty research participation in teacher education, and to further integrate collaborative efforts of our school-based teacher educators—and part of that involves an expansion of our clinical experiences toward yearlong residency.”

The role represents an investment in the potential for teacher education to be a lever for transformation toward equity and justice and improved student achievement for all learners."Julie Gorlewski, PhD

Under Gorlewski’s leadership, students enrolled in GSE’s New York State teacher certification programs will complete expanded clinical experiences, including a yearlong residency in schools throughout Western New York. The residency approach is modeled after medical residencies and builds on the former 15-week student teaching requirement.

“I’m excited about shifting to a yearlong clinical residency and collaborating even more closely with our school partners, teachers and administrators,” said Gorlewski. “Our teacher education programs have always had productive affiliations with schools, and this will enable us to improve those already strong relationships, to extend community partnerships and to ensure that all our collaborations are mutually beneficial.”

UB’s teacher residency approach is grounded in research conducted by Gorlewski and other GSE faculty on the effective practices for the preparation and retention of new teachers. Teacher residencies diminish the first-year learning curve for new teachers, improve retention and reduce turnover in the teaching profession.

At a time when teacher shortages are reaching crisis levels, ensuring a steady pipeline of highly qualified teachers is critical.

The U.S. Department of Education recently recognized UB as a leader in teacher education due in part to its teacher residency programming. UB’s expanded certification pathways, coupled with the yearlong residency, hold great potential for serving as a national model for teacher education.

Gorlewski has published more than 20 manuscripts in peer-reviewed journals and 12 books, including co-authoring “A Case for Change in Teacher Education: Developing Community-Based Residency Programs” in 2022. She also serves on the New York State Professional Standards and Practices Board for Teaching.

As a researcher, professor, administrator, author and New York State certified teacher, Gorlewski possesses more than 30 years of experience in the field.

Before coming to UB in 2018, Gorlewski was an associate professor and the chair of Virginia Commonwealth University’s Department of Teaching and Learning. As an assistant professor in the School of Education at SUNY New Paltz, she received the Provost Award for Research and Creative Activity.

From 2013 to 2018, she was an editor of English Journal, the flagship publication of the National Council of Teachers of English.

Certified in elementary ed and secondary English, she taught English for more than 12 years, often working with diverse populations of learners, including emerging multilingual learners.

Gorlewski received her PhD in social foundations of education and master’s degree in elementary education/early childhood from UB, and a bachelor’s degree in secondary English education from Buffalo State.