New Fellowship Program Addresses Shortage in Teaching AAPI History

TAAS Announces Fellowship Program in Partnership with Fairleigh Dickinson University

We are proud to announce the launch of the Teach Asian American Stories Fellowship, the first program of its kind to address the nationwide shortage of professional development providers in K-12 Asian American and Pacific Islander history by investing in current public school teachers.

The Teach Asian American Stories Fellowship, in partnership with Dr. Khyati Y. Joshi of Fairleigh Dickinson University, will train a cohort of star educators to become facilitators who can provide professional development in teaching about Asian American and Pacific Islander history and contributions to fellow educators. With hundreds of school districts in New Jersey undertaking implementation of the historic K-12 AAPI history curriculum mandate that went into effect in the 2022-23 school year, the TAAS Fellows are expected to play a key role in ensuring that district leaders and teachers are able to access the coaching and support they need to successfully integrate AAPI history and contributions through an intersectional lens into their curricula.

The inaugural TAAS Fellows, selected for their excellence in the classroom and demonstrated commitment to diversity and inclusivity, hail from across New Jersey:

  • Jessica Cappadona, District Curriculum Coordinator & Social Studies Teacher at Marine Academy of Science & Technology, Monmouth County Vocational School District
  • Dr. Darrell DeTample, Social Studies Teacher at Hunterdon Central Regional High School, Hunterdon Central Regional School District
  • Dr. Dakashna Lang, English Teacher at Heritage Middle School, Livingston Public School District
  • Christy Lee, English Teacher at Cherry Hill West High School, Cherry Hill School District
  • Raymund Mantes, 6th Grade Social Studies Teacher, Maplewood Middle School, South Orange Maplewood School District
  • Jade Pietroluongo, Social Studies Teacher, Bernards High School, Somerset Hills School District

Over a period of 6-10 months, Fellows will receive extensive training, coaching, and mentorship from Professor Khyati Joshi and other leading teacher trainers, eventually working up to facilitate their own professional development workshops at FDU or off-site in participating school districts. 

TAAS will also provide Fellows with books, a stipend, a classroom grant, and other resources. Under the guidance of Prof. Joshi, a scholar of race, religion, and immigration and co-founder of the Institute for Teaching Diversity and Social Justice, the TAAS Fellowship will foster a commitment to integrating AAPI studies in close connection with New Jersey’s rich Amistad, Holocaust, LGBTQ, disability, and other curricular mandates.

Upon completion of the program, TAAS Fellows will receive a credential co-signed by Fairleigh Dickinson University and Teach Asian American Stories endorsing them as professional development providers in the area of teaching AAPI history and contributions.

TAAS gratefully acknowledges major support from Asian Americans Advancing Justice and an additional grant from OCA-Asian Pacific American Advocates in support of this fellowship program, along with multiple partners across New Jersey for contributing to the implementation of the curriculum mandate.