Current students

The Association of Aspiring Leaders in Education (AALE), the student association sponsored by the Office of Graduate Studies, is open to all graduate students of the School of Education. We are here to help you meet new people, expand your professional and social networks, navigate through your graduate program, develop practitioner and researcher skills, and answer any questions you may have about your journey to become an educational leader.

Benefits of joining AALE include:

  • Networking with faculty, current and former students, and community leaders
  • Academic support, and research and publication opportunities
  • Professional development
  • Lecture events featuring accomplished figures in education
  • Speakers and workshops on topics related to education practice and policy
  • A way to have your voice heard at the School of Education and at VCU
  • Peer mentoring offered for first-year students
  • Writing and research groups

For more information, including how to become a member, visit the AALE Web page or contact Heather Coleman, AALE president, at

AALE officers

Heather Coleman headshot

Heather Coleman
Ph.D. concentration: special education

Lisa Rufer headshot

Lisa Rufer
Vice president
Ph.D. concentration: sport leadership

Teri Johnson headshot

Teri Johnson
Ph.D. concentration: curriculum, culture and change

Amanda Hall headshot

Amanda Hall
Social/outreach/philanthropy chair
Ph.D. concentration: curriculum, culture and change