Associate professor Jason Irizarry, College of Education’s Director of Urban Education, was selected to receive the Antonia Pantoja Award from the Latino Scholarship Association, Holyoke, Mass., and Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts for his leadership in the education of Latino/a youth. In a letter from the Latino Scholarship Association informing Irizarry of the award, he was recognized for “calling for the reimagining of teacher education, challenging teacher educators to embrace quality, culturally responsive instruction, and reminding classroom teachers and college faculty alike that our young people are capable of more meaningful, thought-provoking and germane instruction than most are currently receiving.”
Irizarry will receive the Antonia Pantoja Award at the Latino Scholarship Association’s annual scholarship dinner in May 2014.
Dr. Antonia Pantoja (1922 - 2002), was an educator, social worker, feminist, civil rights leader and founder of ASPIRA, a non-profit organization that promoted a positive self-image, commitment to community, and education as a value to Puerto Rican and other Latino youth in New York City. Among Pantoja's numerous awards and recognitions are the Presidential Medal of Freedom; an honorary doctoral degree from the University of Massachusetts Amherst; induction into the Hunter College Hall of Fame; The Hispanic Heritage Award; The Julia de Burgos Award of la Casa Cultural of Yale University; and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the New York State Board of Regents.