This has been a great and well-deserved year for Dr. Kim Song. Dr. Song was promoted to full professor in the Department of Educator Preparation and Leadership in the UMSL College of Education in February, 2019. Now, she has earned the 2019 UMSL Trailblazers Award, given to those women who have “blazed a trail” for their noteworthy contributions to the University and their field.
Dr. Song began her education journey in Seoul, South Korea, majoring in English Literature and Linguistics, and came to the US in 1980. She began her study of teacher education in 1990 at McKendree University, and still continues at UMSL in 2019. As a single mother, emergent bilingual, immigrant, mature woman, learner and teacher, she is always exploring and contributing to the equitable and excellent education of linguistically and culturally diverse children and their families.
She began her career at UMSL in 2002 teaching a social studies methods course to Elementary School majors. Dr. Song developed all of the TESOL courses in 2007 that are required for the State add-on TESOL certification. Since 2008, Song has continued to develop, revise and teach the TESOL courses. In 2010, Song received an eLearning Grant from the UM system to develop the six TESOL courses on line. Song’s main research lines of inquiry examine evidence-based urban teaching and learning; linguistically, racially and culturally responsive content teaching for ELs; and creativity in technology-mediated online teaching for immigrant/refugee children in PK-12 contexts. Song has more than 40 peer reviewed publications and 60 conference paper presentations.
Dr. Song has been primary investigator (PI) and Co-primary investigator for 9.9 million-dollar federal grants from the Department of Education. Currently, she is directing the Strengthening Equity and Effectiveness for Teachers of English Learners (SEE-TEL) grant with four Missouri school districts: Bayless, Carthage, Columbia, and Kansas City public schools. She is an executive editor of the board for the Bilingual Research Journal. In 2018-2019, she serves as a chair for the Research Policy Committee, a Strategic Planning Committee member and a Multicultural Education Committee member at UMSL. She served as co-chair of the 2017 Cambio de Colores Conference, became a Cambio Center Fellow, and served as a 2018 Cambio Conference plenary speaker. In 2010, she was a keynote speaker in Oman for about 1000 English as a Foreign Language instructors at the college level. She has also organized and chaired a number of the symposia at AERA and TESOL conferences. She has also co-founded the Missouri Dual Language Network (MODLAN) in 2015. She was honored with the UM President’s Intercampus Award for Collaboration in 2018 with her SEE-TEL partner, Dr. Lisa Dorner, which was a milestone for her service to UM as well as to her UMSL students, Missouri teachers, and diverse PK-12 learners. Dr. Song shares, “Being able to create a safe and inclusive communal space for university students, the partner cohort teachers, administrators, and PK12 learners, while leading a grant team, answering research questions that contribute to the [inter]national scholarship, and serving schools and communities — all at the same time — have all been some of the most rewarding experiences of my career thus far, and I will continue to grow as an ongoing learner, teacher, and global neighbor.”