Student News

Doctoral student Nestor Ramirez named a Barbara Jackson Scholar

Nestor Ramirez

Nestor Ramirez, a doctoral student in Educational Policy, Organization and Leadership, has been named a Barbara Jackson Scholar by the University Council for Educational Administration.

The Jackson Scholars program was established by the UCEA to support promising graduate students of color in the field of educational leadership. The two-year program includes a structured mentoring program in which scholars are matched with faculty mentors, and a networking initiative that includes attendance at UCEA conventions and annual meetings of the American Educational Research Association.

Typically about 40 to 45 scholars are chosen from UCEA member programs at uniersities across the country.

Ramirez, who is working as a research education analyst at Research Triangle Institute while he completes his doctorate, is the son of Colombian immigrants. Born in Flushing, New York, Ramirez lived with his family in Florida before moving to Durham, where he graduated from Southern High School.

He became the first in his family to go to college when he first came to Carolina. Ramirez graduated in 2012, majoring in psychology with a minor in philosophy.

He spent two years as an adviser for the Carolina College Advising Corps, working in high schools in western North Carolina to help create a college-going culture, particularly for low-income and first-generation students.

Ramirez’s research focuses on college access and success, particularly for underrepresented students and students of color. His dissertation focuses on the role of geography and student mobility on college choices and decision-making.

After he completes his doctorate, Ramirez plans to continue work as a postsecondary researcher by incorporating survey methods and quantitative analysis to the study of first-time beginning college students nationwide.

The Jackson Scholars program is named after the late Barbara Jackson, who was a professor at the Graduate School of Education at Fordham University, and a widely published scholar in educational leadership. During a career in which she worked at Fordham University, Morgan State University and Atlanta University, she sought to support the advancement of scholars of color in educational leadership. She died in 2012.