New Faculty Profile: Carmen Martinez-Roldan ☆

TC is pleased to welcome Dr. Carmen Martínez-Roldán to the Arts & Humanities faculty. Coming from the University of Texas at Austin, she will join the Bilingual/Bicultural Education program teaching such courses as Foundations of Bilingual Education, Biliteracy, and Latino Literature for Children and Adolescents. With a research agenda rooted in the literacy process of bilingual students, Dr. Martínez-Roldán enjoys examining how this population learns and what can support that learning. Her main areas of focus include children’s responses to literature and digital literacy.

Originally from Puerto Rico, Dr. Martínez-Roldán earned her doctorate at the University  of Arizona in Tucson, followed by a two year post-doc fellowship from the National Council of Teachers of English at the University of Iowa. She has also taught at Arizona State University in Phoenix.

Spending much of her life in warm climates, Dr. Martínez-Roldán admits she was worried about the weather in NYC. Her desire to work with Puerto Rican and Caribbean kids, however, helped her embrace the change and she is very happy to be here. “Living in a city where diversity is the norm for a minority scholar is a really great experience. I am happy to go places and hear Spanish. You find Puerto Ricans and Dominicans everywhere. I feel at home here.”

Dr. Martínez-Roldán’s passion for Bilingual/Bicultural Education stems from her desire to help teachers connect with their Latino students. “It is so important to offer reading materials to our bilingual kids in which they can actually see themselves and their lives represented and for teachers to know what literature to use. In terms of my teaching, I would love to broaden my students’ repertoire of tools, strategies, theories and knowledge regarding how to better serve children in general, but especially bilingual kids.”

Dr. Martínez-Roldán also looks forward to learning from her students the realities of the educational experience here in NYC and wherever they have been, as well as forming relationships with her students and school communities in the city.   In her spare time, Dr. Martínez-Roldán enjoys dancing, including salsa, tango, merengue, and even traditional ballroom Puerto Rican dances. And right now she is enjoying her exploration of the city, and is happy to be settling in to her new home in New York City and Teachers College.