Professor Ryan Miller Named Emerging Scholar by American College Personnel Association

Ryan Miller
Friday, February 26, 2021

Cato College of Education professor Ryan Miller has been named a 2021 Emerging Scholar by The American College Personnel Association (ACPA).

The ACPA recognizes exemplary students, administrators, educators, and initiatives, during its annual convention. ACPA’s core values of education and development of the whole student and diversity, multicultural competence and human dignity.

“It is humbling to be chosen to join the company of phenomenal current and previous ACPA Emerging Scholars whose work I admire. I am excited to deepen connections with these colleagues and to forge new connections to advance equity and justice in higher education,” Miller said. 

Miller’s research agenda focuses on the experiences of minoritized social groups in higher education as well as the institutionalization of equity and diversity efforts in colleges and universities. He is an assistant professor in the Cato College of Education and director of the M.Ed. in Educational Leadership (Higher Education) program

Miller’s current project focuses on LGBTQ identities in STEM and how LGBTQ college students describe post-secondary STEM learning environments.

“One strand of my research has focused on LGBTQ students with disabilities, and I noticed in a prior study that students majoring in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields were having very different experiences of classroom and campus climate than their counterparts majoring in social sciences, humanities, and other professional fields,” he said. 

Once their research is complete, Miller and two colleagues will present their findings at an upcoming ACPA Conventions as part of the sponsored Emerging Scholar Research sessions.

“In line with ACPA's Strategic Imperative for Racial Justice and Decolonization, this also means understanding students' experiences holistically and taking into account how racism intersects with students' experiences of heterosexism and genderism. Along with research collaborators including Dr. Rachael Forester of the Office of Identity, Equity, and Engagement (and an alum of the Ed.D. program at UNC Charlotte), we are taking a deep dive into understanding the role of whiteness, racism, and white supremacy culture in STEM climates, as experienced by LGBTQ students,” Miller said. 

Dr. Miller has been a part of the UNC Charlotte community since 2016, during which time he has received the 2016 Melvene D. Hardee Dissertation of the Year award from NASPA for his research about LGBTQ students with disabilities and the 2019 Early Career Faculty award from the UNC Charlotte Cato College of Education. Miller teaches classes that focus on college student development, student affairs administration, and higher education leadership.

Prior to coming to UNC Charlotte,  Miller was the Director of the Office for Inclusion and Equity at The University of Texas at Austin.

by: Katie Rayner, CHHS Communications Graduate Assistant