Martha Mock (M.Ed. '92) receives national award

SOE alum recognized for 'Leadership in Inclusive Education'

SOE alum Martha Mock (M.Ed. '92)
SOE alum Dr. Martha Mock (M.Ed. '92)

In a room packed with hundreds of colleagues, policymakers, and families at the 2018 State of the Art (SOTA) Conference on Postsecondary Education and Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities in Syracuse, N.Y., Martha Mock was presented the Leadership in Inclusive Higher Education Award on October 10. The award recognizes an administrator, program director, or staff member with a higher education institution who epitomizes leadership in the postsecondary field.

Cindi May, a 2018 SOTA Conference advisory board member and a professor from the College of Charleston, presented the award with a powerful speech outlining Mock’s leadership in higher education.

“Martha’s passion for inclusive higher education for students with intellectual disabilities is contagious, and her work for the past decade has helped make tremendous gains in our still-new field,” May said. “Her dedicated leadership has directly resulted in the establishment and growth of opportunities in the state of New York and across the country. She employs an approach that emphasizes empowerment of people with intellectual disabilities, strong community collaborations, and effective advocacy at all levels.”

Mock is a clinical professor at the University of Rochester’s Warner School of Education, where she serves as director of both the early childhood and inclusion/special education teacher preparation programs and the Center on Disability and Education. Mock’s career in inclusion, transition and education spans more than two decades, including her time as a teacher, professor and advocate working alongside and on behalf of individuals with disabilities and their families. For more than a decade, she has worked to change the landscape of educational opportunities for transition-age students with intellectual and developmental disabilities. In doing so, she has impacted practice, policy, and outcomes for students across the nation.

During Mock’s acceptance speech, she took the opportunity to emphasize the importance of full inclusion in higher education.

“There are 5,300 colleges and universities in the United States, and we have access to 260 of them,” she said. “While this represents five percent of colleges, we are a mighty five percent—and many would argue the best five percent. We can agree that progress over the last decade has been significant, but I’m sure we can also agree that we have more work ahead of us.”

The annual SOTA Conference is an opportunity for colleges and universities, researchers, program staff, parents, and self-advocates to learn about the current state of research and practice in the field of inclusive postsecondary education and to network with others. Learn more about the SOTA Conference and its leadership awards at

University of Rochester Warner School of Education Story