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About Staci B. Martin

Dr. Staci B. Martin works in the field of refugee education, specifically psychosocial and social-emotional learning. She is a community-based action researcher who conducts research with vulnerable populations, in particular, refugee youth, often following their lead in her work.
Staci has lived and worked alongside vulnerable communities in over 20 countries. Her experiences include designing, implementing, and evaluating sustainable psychosocial peace-building educational programs in four countries: Dieplsoot Informal Settlement, South Africa; Vishwa Shanti Vihara Vishwa Monastery, Nepal; Jamaica; and Kakuma Refugee Camp, Kenya. She has presented at over 20 conferences and authored five papers. She received her Ed.D. in the Educational Leadership Doctoral Program: Curriculum and Instruction from Portland State University in 2018. She is the recipient of the 2018 Carnegie Project of the Education Doctorate (CPED) Dissertation in Practice of the Year Award and also the Louise M. Berman Fellows Award.
Staci's research and teaching interests include critical hope and despair, pedagogy of hope, refugee education, psychosocial, peace-building, participants as co-researchers, and community-based action projects. By applying critical hope in the classroom, she brings forward the authentic and lived experiences of students while co-creating spaces for students to be heard, seen, and valued. This pedagogical stance also asks teachers and learners to co-create spaces to engage in their critical thinking and self-reflexivity in the hopes that they will have the ability, knowledge, and skills to defend themselves and resist systematic oppression. Her hope in using this conceptual framework is to find a space where teachers and learners can move beyond just being critical and offer steps of action and hope with the vulnerable communities, families, and individuals they work alongside.


Present Adjunct Faculty Member, Portland State University Child and Family Studies
Present Adjunct Assistant Professor, Portland State University School of Social Work

Curriculum Vitae

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Honors and Awards

  • Portland State University Adjunct Excellence Award for Instruction (campus-wide). (2018). Portland State University, Portland, OR, USA.
  • Dean’s Award for University Service. (2016). Portland State University, Portland, OR, USA.
  • HANNA Scholar Award. (1998-2000). General Board of Global Ministries, United Methodist Church, Nashville, TN, USA.
  • Incentive Scholarship. (1998-2000). The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA.
  • President Ramaley Community Scholar Award. (1998). Portland State University, Portland, OR, USA.


2018 Ed.D., Portland State University ‐ Educational Leadership: Curriculum and Instruction
2016 Certificate of Completion, Universtiy of Geneva ‐ Higher Education in Emergencies
2000 MA, The School Of The Art Institute Of Chicago ‐ Art Therapy

Dissertation (1)

Peer Reviewed Publications (4)

Book Chapters (1)

Book Reviews (1)

Conference Presentations (14)

Non-Refereed Publications or Other Creative Achievements (1)