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GSC Steering Committee

All graduate students holding AAAL membership are automatically a member of the AAAL Graduate Student Council. The GSC Steering Committee, on the other hand, is the leadership team that works closely with the AAAL Executive Committee for taking initiatives to address GSC members' academic professional development needs. The Steering Committee strives to accomplish the following goals, as stated in the AAAL organizational Standing Rules:

  1. Support grad students’ academic and professional development in Applied Linguistics and other related fields

  2. Increase inter-institution student-to-student collaboration and develop networking opportunities with other scholars in the field

  3. Provide bottom-up leadership within the council and subcommittees

  4. Ensure ongoing leadership for the GSC by investing in developing leadership opportunities for subcommittee members

  5. Strive for diversity within the GSC, including, but not limited to race, ethnicity, age, geography, (dis) ability, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, socioeconomic status, citizenship status, religion, academic focus, degree program, and career goals to ensure a variety of experience and areas of expertise

The GSC Steering Committee consists of 6 positions: 2 co-chairs, 1 secretary, and 3 members-at-large. The members of the Steering Committee meet regularly throughout the service year to plan and execute the yearly initiatives in order to serve the GSC members. Each person on the Steering Committee leads their own team of graduate student volunteers in accomplishing one or more tasks (e.g., planning a conference event, managing social media, editing the graduate student newsletter).

GSC Steering Committee positions are yearly assignment. All GSC members are eligible for applying to the Steering Committee positions. The application and interview process begins every year around February per announced by the current GSC Steering Committee.

2023-2024 Steering Committee

Oksana Moroz
Co-chair (GSC representative on EC)

Oksana Moroz is a Mama PhD Candidate at Indiana University of Pennsylvania; she is a Ukrainian international student in the Composition and Applied Linguistics PhD program. Her research interests include gender and teacher identity, digital identities of students, issues of accents and language ideologies, and teaching with Wikipedia. Oksana was a Muskie Intern and Fulbright scholar from Ukraine interning at Intensive English Communication Program at Penn State University. She is also interested in gender identity performance and culturally relevant pedagogies. Oksana’s professional expertise include teaching Composition I and Composition II courses, English as International Language to multilingual students, Grammar courses to international students and private tutoring classes. As a co-chair on the GSC steering committee, Oksana's responsibilities include co-planning and co-leading Steering Committee meetings, overseeing the graduate student events at the AAAL conference, collaborating with the AAAL conference planning committee, and attending AAAL conference and business meetings. She can be reached at


John Wayne N. dela Cruz
Co-chair (GSC representative on PAEC)

John Wayne N. dela Cruz is a PhD candidate (Educational Studies - Language Acquisition) and SSHRC Bombardier Scholar at McGill University. John’s research examines critical  plurilingualism in the context of language education and Canadian mono/bilingual policies, and he is particularly interested in the plurilingual practices and identities of immigrants acquiring Canada’s official English and French languages as additional languages. His research praxis draws from being a Filipino immigrant to Canada, and from being a plurilingual language learner himself. Outside of research, John organizes GradTalks—a speaker series for and by graduate students—at McGill’s Plurilingual Lab, and works as a language teacher and teacher trainer: he has taught ESL using plurilingual pedagogies to learners at various levels, as well as undergraduate and graduate courses for pre- and in-service English and French teachers. In addition to his role as GSC's Steering Committee co-chair, John serves as a student representative in AAAL's Public Affairs and Engagement Committee (PAEC). Feel free to reach out to him at


Chia-Hsin (Jennifer) Yin
Secretary  (GSC representative on FFAL & Diversity Sub-Committee Leader)

Chia-Hsin (Jennifer) Yin is a Fulbright doctoral student in Multilingual Language Education (MLE) program at the Ohio State University, Columbus. She is also completing an Interdisciplinary Specailization in Cognitive and Brain Sciences. Her primary scholarly interests are in young learner language assessment, translanguaging, multimodal composing, and memory and language processing. Chia-Hsin serves as the Secretary of the AAAL Graduate Student Council and the leader of the Diversity sub-committee. She will also serve on the FFAL (Fund for the Future of Applied Linguistics) and DEIA (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Access) task forces. She endeavors to enhance equity and diversity in the Diversity Sub-committee for AAAL and beyond. Chia-Hsin can be reached at

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Kyungjin Hwang
Member-at-large  (Event Planning Sub-Committee Leader)

Kyungjin Hwang (she/her/hers) is a PhD candidate in Language and Literacy at the University of South Carolina. Kyungjin is a former English teacher at middle and high schools in South Korea, and currently teaches Korean language to Korean immigrant children at a community-based Korean language school in the U.S. She particularly makes an effort to devise and implement methods to allow Korean heritage bilingual children to use their semiotic and linguistic resources for their creative and critical meaning-making. She worked as an executive assistant at the Bilingualism Matters Center @ UofSC, which supports research and events to promote awareness about bilingualism. Her primary research interests include Dynamic Bilingualism, Multimodal Translanguaging Pedagogy, Language Ideology, and English as a Second or Foreign Language. She can be reached at

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Jieun Kim
Member-at-large  (Newsletter Sub-Committee Leader)

Jieun Kim (김지은) is a Fulbright scholar/Ph.D. student in Second Language Studies at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa (UHM). She has experience teaching English at middle and high schools in Korea and holds an MA degree from Seoul National University. Her research interests include language testing, second language reading, and second language instruction. Currently, she is working on multiple projects focusing on remote proctoring, test preparation, listening anxiety, and video-based listening tests. With her contributions, she aspires to enhance the validity, fairness, and equity of language testing. She can be reached at


Wei Xu
Member-at-large (Social Media Sub-Committee Leader)

Wei Xu is a Ph.D. candidate in Second Language Acquisition and Teaching (SLAT) at the University of Arizona. Her research interests include genre studies, L2 writing, and multimodal composition. She has an MA in TESOL from Durham University in the UK. She previously worked as an ESL instructor in various contexts in mainland China, and currently works as a graduate teaching associate for the Writing Program in the English Department by teaching the Foundations Writing courses. She also works as the graduate assistant director for Global Campus International Foundations Writing Program at the University of Arizona. You can find Wei playing badminton, singing, and hanging out with her friends when she is not leading the Social Media Sub-Committee. She can be reached at

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2022-2023 Steering Committee

Oksana Moroz, co-chair, Indiana University of Pennsylvania

Jacob Rieker, co-chair, Pennsylvania State University

Valentino Rahming, secretary, Carnegie Mellon University

Sophia Minnillo, member-at-large, University of California, Davis

Alyssa Wolfe, member-at-large, Michigan State University

Paul J. Meighan, member-at-large, McGill University

2021-2022 Steering Committee

Laxmi Prasad Ojha, co-chair, Michigan State University

Svetlana Koltovskaia, co-chair, Oklahoma State University

Xiao Tan, secretary, Arizona State University

Lupe Rincon-Mendoz, member-at-large, The Pennsylvania State University

Nathan Thomas, member-at-large, University College London

Oksana Moroz, member-at-large, Indiana University of Pennsylvania


2020-2021 Steering Committee

Haoshan (Sally) Ren, co-chair, Georgia State University

Laxmi Prasad Ojha co-chair, Michigan State University

Josiah Murphy, secretary, University of Hawai’i at Manoa 

Svetlana Koltovskaia, member-at-large, Oklahoma State University

Stefan Markus Vogel, member-at-large, University of Arizona

Lupe Rincon-Medoza, member-at-large, Pennsylvania State University

2019-2020 Steering Committee

James Coda, co-chair, University of Georgia

Nicole Deschene, co-chair, New York University

Haoshan (Sally) Ren, secretary, Georgia State University

Nicole King, member-at-large, Ohio State University

Laxmi Prasad Ojha, member-at-large, Minnesota State University

2018-2019 Steering Committee

Michael Amory, co-chair, Pennsylvania State University

Rayoung Song, co-chair, University of Mass-Amherst

Shyam Pandey, secretary, Purdue University

Jessica Lian, member-at-large, Georgia State University
James Coda, member-at-large, University of Georgia

2017-2018 Steering Committee

Laura Hamman, co-chair, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Mengying Liu, co-chair, University of Minnesota

Michael Amory, secretary, Pennsylvania State University

Rayoung Song, member-at-large, University of Mass-Amherst

Ai-Chu Ding, member-at-large, Indiana University

2016-2017 Steering Committee

Lindsey Kurtz, co-chair, Pennsylvania State University

Mengying Liu, co-chair, University of Minnesota

Laura Hamman, secretary, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Rayoung Song, member-at-large, University of Mass-Amherst

Elena Shvidko, member-at-large, Purdue University 

2015-2016 Steering Committee

Daniel Ginsberg, co-chair, Georgetown University

Nicole Pettitt, co-chair, Georgia State University

Abram Jones, secretary, University of California-Davis

Emily Hellmich, member-at-large, University of California-Berkeley

Elena Shvidko, member-at-large, Purdue University

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