Current Faculty Fellows

Faculty Fellows (2021-2022)

Laura Baecher (Curriculum and Teaching)

Dr. Laura Baecher is a Professor at the Hunter College School of Education, City University of New York where she also serves as a faculty fellow in the Academic Center for Excellence in Research and Teaching.  Her interests relate to teacher/faculty learning, observation and coaching, and professional development. Recent books include Study Abroad in Teacher Education: Transformative Learning for Pre- and In-Service Teachers and Global Perspectives on the Practicum in TESOL.  She is the Professional Development Blog author for TESOL (2021-2022), has served as TESOL’s Teacher Education Interest Section Chair, as an English Language Specialist for the US Department of State, and as President of the New York State TESOL affiliate.  The winner of multiple awards for teaching and service, she is committed to advancing the professional knowledge base of educators in ways that build community, inspire growth and support reflection.



Jillian Báez (Africana and Puerto Rican/Latino Studies)

Jillian Báez is an associate professor in the Africana and Puerto Rican/Latino Studies Department at Hunter College, City University of New York. She is also an affiliated faculty member at the CUNY Mexican Studies Institute and on the doctoral faculty in Women’s and Gender Studies at the CUNY Graduate Center. Her research expertise lies in Latina/o/x media and popular culture, transnational feminisms, and issues of belonging and citizenship. She is the author of In Search of Belonging: Latinas, Media and Citizenship (University of Illinois Press, 2018), recipient of the 2019 Bonnie Ritter Award for Outstanding Feminist Book at the National Communication Association. Dr. Báez’s research has also been in published in numerous peer-reviewed journals including Critical Studies in Media Communication; Communication, Culture & Critique; Women’s Studies Quarterly; Latino Studies; Centro: Journal of the Center for Puerto Rican Studies, and Chicana/Latina Studies.



Vicki Lens (Social Work)


Dr. Vicki Lens is a professor at the Silberman School of Social Work at Hunter College. She has dual degrees in both social work (B.S.W., M. S. W., Ph.D.) and law (J.D.). Her areas of teaching include social policy, social work and the law, and qualitative research methods. Her primary research interests are in poverty and socio-legal studies, where she uses ethnographic and other qualitative methods to examine how race, class and gender intersect in the legal system and other governmental institutions




Gina Riley (Special Education)


Gina is a Clinical Professor and the Program Leader of the Adolescent Special Education Program at Hunter College. She has been involved in the field of online learning for 20 years. She loves ACERT for its focus on innovative teaching and learning practices. Gina is currently involved in ACERT’s book discussions on ungrading, which perfectly compliment her research on intrinsic motivation in education. She is also a member of the CUNY Hyflex Pilot Initiative. She is known internationally for her work in the fields of homeschooling, unschooling, and other self directed learning environments.

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