Lesley Hernandez Silva

Photo of Lesley Hernandez Silva

Educational Leadership & Policy

Ph.D. in Educational Leadership & Policy, The University of Texas at Austin, expected 2025
M.S. in College Student Services Administration, Oregon State University, 2019
B.S. in Psychology, Washington State University, 2017

Email: lesley.hernandezsilva@utexas.edu
View Curriculum Vitae (pdf)
Lesley Hernandez Silva is a doctoral student in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy at The University of Texas at Austin. Her research interests are grounded in the success of Latinx students in higher education using an asset-based approach. She seeks to challenge the deficit rhetoric surrounding Latinx students while examining the positive connection between family, culture, and language as it relates to their success and degree attainment. Lesley has a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Washington State University and a Master of Science in College Student Services Administration from Oregon State University.

On campus, Lesley currently serves as a Graduate Research Assistant for Dr. Liliana Garces. Prior to her doctoral studies, she served as a Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs (GEAR UP) Site Director for Central Washington University. There, she worked with over 120 students and families, who identified as low-income and of Latinx background, to educate and empower them as they navigated the college admissions process and system of higher education. Lesley also holds work experience with state and federal grants such as TRIO Student Support Services and the College Assistance Migrant Program. She was awarded the Jesse H. Jones Endowed and C.C. & Lottie Mae Colvert fellowship to support her work in exploring positive and culturally relevant practices to improve educational outcomes for Latinx students. As a result of her own experiences, Lesley’s professional goal as an educator, mentor, and community advocate has been to impact the lives and educational aspirations for students seeking higher education with backgrounds similar to her own.