Cinzia Pica, Ed.D.

Chair, Department of Human Services and Rehabilitation Studies

Director of the Women’s Studies Program

Professor, Human Services & Rehabilitation Studies

508-767-7306 Switzer Building - Room 109

Degrees Earned

B.A., The College of Saint Rose, Albany, NY
M.S.Ed., The College of Saint Rose, Albany, NY
Ed.M., Harvard University, Cambridge, MA
Ed.D., University of Massachusetts Amherst

Undergraduate Courses Taught

Prevention and Intervention: Models and Approaches with Youth
Interviewing Techniques
Family and Disability
Principles of Case Management
Individuals in the Community
Loss and Bereavement
Diversity in Schools
Women of the World
Global Humanitarian Relief: Global Migration

Publications & Editorships

Books

Pica-Smith, C., Contini, R. M., & Veloria, C. (2019). Social Justice Education in European Multi-Ethnic Schools: Addressing the Goals of Intercultural Education. London, UK: Routledge.

Pica-Smith, C., Veloria, C. & Contini, R. M. (Eds.) (2020). Intercultural Education: Critical Perspectives, Pedagogical Challenges and Promising Practices. New York, Nova Science Publishers.

Journal Articles and Book Chapters

Pica, C. (2023). Facilitating Learning in Context: Refugee Resettlement Case Management Pedagogy in a Human Services Course. Journal of Human Services42(2). https://doi.org/10.52678/001c.88172

Colón, M., Veloria, N. C. & Pica-Smith, C., & Rina Manuela Contini (2022). A Systems’ analysis of barriers and opportunities: Latine education in Massachusetts. International Migration: Special Issue. https://doi.org/10.1111/imig.13099

Williams, C., & Pica-Smith, C. (2022). Camera Use in the Online Classroom: Students and Educators’ Perspectives. European Journal of Teaching and Education, 4(2): x-x. https://doi.org/10.33422/ejte.v4i2.736

Pica-Smith, C. & Scannell, C. (2020). Teaching and learning for this moment: How a trauma-informed lens can guide our praxis. International Journal of Multidisciplinary Perspectives in Higher Education, 5(1), pp. 76-83.

Modood, T., Contini, R. M., & Pica-Smith, C. (2020). The multiculturalism-interculturalism debate: an interview with Tariq  Modood. In C. Pica-Smith, Veloria, C., & R. M. Contini (Eds.). Intercultural Education: Critical Perspectives, Pedagogical Challenges and Promising Practices. New York: Nova Science Publishers

Pica-Smith, C., Contini, R. M., & Ives, B. (2018). Children.’s Intergroup Friendships in Italian Multiethnic Schools. Italian Journal of Sociology of Education, 10(3) p. 140-163.

Contini, R.M. & Pica-Smith, C. (2018). Education and Diversity: Theoretical and Practical Issues. Studi di Sociologia, 3, 239-256.

Contini, R. M., & Pica-Smith, C. (2017). Problematizing the Conceptual Framework of Interculturalism and its Pedagogical Extension of Intercultural Education: Theoretical Perspectives and their Implications. Italian Journal of Sociology of Education, 9(3), 236-255.

Pica-Smith, C., & Poynton, T. (2017). Supporting interethnic and interracial friendships among youth to reduce prejudice and racism in schools: The role of the school counselor. In T. P. Remley, Jr., W. D. Rock, & R. M. Reed (Eds.), Ethical and legal issues in school counseling (4th ed.)(pp. 378-392). Reprinted article from Professional School Counseling, 18(1), 82-89.

Pica-Smith, C., Antognazza, D., Marland, J. J., & Crescentini, A. (2017). A cross-cultural study of Italian and U.S. children’s perceptions of interethnic and interracial friendships in two urban schools. Cogent Education, 4(1), 1280255.

Pica-Smith, C. & Poynton, T. (2014). Supporting interethnic and interracial friendships among youth to reduce prejudice and racism in schools: The role of the school counselor. Professional School Counseling, 18, 82-89.

Pica-Smith, C. & Veloria, C. (2012). “At risk means a minority kid”: Deconstructing deficit discourses in the study of risk in education and human services. Pedagogy and Human Sciences, 1, 2, 33-48.

Pica-Smith, C. (2011). Children’s perceptions of interracial friendships in a multiethnic school context. Journal of Research in Childhood Education, 25, 2, 119-132.

Pica-Smith, C. (2010, December 16). “Design your own life!” Thoughts on ethnicity, race, and parenting biracial children. The Journal of Family Life.

Galman, S.A., Pica-Smith, C., & Rosenberger, C. (2010). Aggressive and tender navigations: Teacher educators confront whiteness in their practice. Journal of Teacher Education, 61(3), 225-236.

Pica-Smith, C. (2009). Children speak about interethnic and interracial friendships in the classroom: Lessons for teachers. Multicultural Education, 17, 1, 38-47.

Media

Featured Presenter. On NPR’s The Academic Minute, aired on WAMC, September 9, 2020.

Featured Guest Expert for the episode “What About Your Friends?” on Code Switch, NPR, January 22, 2020.

Featured Guest for “The Importance of Cross-Race Friendships” on 51% with Allison Dunne, WAMC Northeast Public Radio, July 3, 2019.

TEDx Presenter. “Interracial Friendships in Schools: Why Diversity Day Isn’t Enough.” TEDx Women, Easthampton, Massachusetts, December 1, 2018.

Interviewed and Featured for “Education: Cross-Race Relationships Seen as Critical for Young Students.” Worcester Magazine, December 27, 2018.

Interviewed and Featured for “Real Friendships Reflect some Real Progress.” Telegram & Gazette, June 3, 2016.

Presentations

Williams C. & Pica C. (2023, Nov 11). Engaged Learning Pedagogies in Human Service Education: Practical Strategies, Implementation Experiences, and Future Directions. [Conference Presentation]. National Organization for Human Services.

Colon, M., Veloria, C., Pica-Smith, C. & Contini, R. M. (2023, May 5). A Systems Analysis of Latine education in Massachusetts. [Conference Presentation]. New England Educational Research Organization, Portsmouth, New Hampshire.

Contini, R.M, Colon, M., Veloria, C. & Pica-Smith, C. (2023, April 14). Latine Students in Massachusetts: A Call for Critical Integration. [Conference Presentation]. AIS-EDU International Conference on Education as Commons, Democratic Values, Social Justice and Inclusion, Palermo, Italy.

Colon, M., Veloria, C., Pica-Smith, C. & Contini, R. M. (2022, November 5). Latine education in Massachusetts. [Conference Presentation]. New England Council of Latin American Studies NECLAS Conference, Central Connecticut State University, New Britain.

Colon, M., Veloria, C., Pica-Smith, C. & Contini, R. M. (2022, October 1). A Systems’ analysis of barriers and opportunities: Latine education in Massachusetts. [Conference Presentation]. International Association Intercultural Education Conference, Athens, Greece.
Williams, C. & Pica-Smith, C. (2022, April 8). Camera Use in Remote and Hybrid Classrooms: Students and Educators’ Perspectives on Creating Community and Supporting Student Engagement and Participation. [Conference Presentation]. New England Educational Research Organization, Portsmouth, NH.

Pica-Smith, C., (2021) Chair and Symposium Organizer, Intercultural Education Towards Social Justice? Critical Perspectives, Pedagogical Challenges and Promising Practices. Accepted. Association for Moral Education’s Annual Conference, Online, November 3-7.

Contini, R, M., Pica-Smith, C. & Scannell, C. (2021). Rethinking Education in Times of Crisis: Assessing and Addressing Educational Inequities Using Systems’ Frameworks, Trauma Informed Care, and Social Justice Education. European Sociological Association, Barcelona, August 31-September 2.

Pica-Smith, C. and Scannell, C. (2021) Students’ and Educators’ Perspectives on Camera Use in the Classroom: Thinking Through Issues of Inclusion, Equity, Engagement, and Safety on Screens. International Conference on Research in Teaching and Learning, London, August 27-29.

Pica-Smith, C. , Contini, R. M. & Veloria, C. M. (2021). “Intercultural Education: Critical Perspectives, Pedagogical Challenges and Promising Practices.” Webinar Presentation,  Fondazione ISMU, Iniziativa e Studi sulla Multietnicità. Milano, Italy, July 6.

Pica-Smith, C. & Veloria, C. M. (2021). Social Justice Education in Multiethnic Schools: Addressing the Goals of Intercultural Education. New England Educational Research Organization Conference, March 26.

Contini, R. M. Pica-Smith, C., and Veloria, C. M. (2020). “Educazione Interculturale, una questione di giustizia sociale?” Webinar Presentation at Fondazione ISMU, Iniziativa e Studi sulla Multietnicità. Milano, Italy, July 16.

Pica-Smith, C., Contini, R. M., Veloria, C. M., (2020). “Diversity and Education” Colloquium presentation accepted for the Twentieth International Conference on Diversity in Organizations, Communities, and Nations, University of Milan, Italy, June 10-12.

Pica-Smith, C., Contini, R. M., Veloria, C. M., Di Francesco, G. (2019). Social Justice and Intercultural Education? An Italian Case Study. Paper presented at the 14th Conference of the European Sociological Association “Europe and Beyond: Boundaries, Barriers and Belonging.” University of Manchester, United Kingdom, August 20-23.

Contini, R. M. Pica-Smith, C. (2018) Declinazione Educative dell’intercultura: Concettualizzazione e implementazione nel mondo della scuola. Paper Presented at the Convegno di Fine Mandato, Sociologia dell’Educazione, at the University of Salerno in Salerno, Italy, May, 17-18.

Pica-Smith C., & Contini, R. M. (2018). Interculturalism in Italian Multiethnic Schools: Teachers’ Reflections Constructions and Interpretations. Paper presented to the New England Educational Research Organization, Portsmouth, NH, May 2-4.

Pica-Smith, C., & Robinson, E. (2018) Discussants and Symposium Organizers for Theory Into Action: Teaching and Learning Beyond the Classroom Walls. Symposium Presented at the New England Educational Research Organization, Portsmouth, NH, May 2-4.

Pica-Smith, C., Ives, B., & Contini, R. M. (2018). Intergroup Friendships in Italian Multiethnic Schools. Paper presented to the American Educational Research Association Conference, New York City, NY, April 13-17.

Di Francesco, G., Pica-Smith, C. & Contini, R.M. (2017). Migration, Intergroup Friendships, and Socio-cultural Integration. European Sociological Association 2017 Conference, Athens, Greece, August 29-September 1.

Pica-Smith, C. & Insignares, M. (2017). Interrupting Xenophobic Discourses and the “Othering” of Migrants: Using Community Service Learning Pedagogy to Teach about Refugee Resettlement. Paper presented at the Jesuit Universities Humanitarian Action Network Conference, Worcester, MA, June 26-29.

Pica-Smith, C. & Contini, R. M. (2017). Italian Schools and Interculturality: Integration and Discrimination in Friendship Formation. Paper presented to the American Educational Research Association 2017 Conference, San Antonio, TX, April 26-May 1.

Pica-Smith, C. & Contini, R. M. (2017). Italian Schools and Interculturality: Abbruzzo Case Study. Paper presented to the New England Educational Research Organization, Portsmouth, NH, April 5-7.

Pica-Smith, C. (2016). Understanding Children’s Perceptions of Intergroup Friendships. Kim Fries Award Presentation. Presented at the New England Educational Organizations’ Annual Conference, Portsmouth, NH, April 27-29.

Pica-Smith, C. (2015). A Cross-Cultural Study of Italian and U.S. Children’s Perceptions of Interethnic and Interracial Friendships in two Urban Schools. Paper presented at the New England Educational Research Organization’s Annual Conference, Portsmouth, NH, April 29-May 1.

Pica-Smith, C. (2014). A Cross Cultural Study of Italian and U.S. Children’s Perceptions of Interethnic and Interracial Friendships. Paper presented at the Society for Cross Cultural Research Conference, Charlotte, NC, February 12-14.

Pica-Smith, C. (2013). A Cross Cultural Study of Italian and U.S. Children’s Perceptions of Interethnic and Interracial Friendships. Paper presented at American Educational Research Association, San Francisco, CA, April 27-May 2.

Pica-Smith, C. & Veloria, C. (2012). “At risk means a minority kid:” Deconstructing deficit discourses in the study of risk in education and human services. Paper presented at the Distinguished Paper Session of the American Educational Research Association, San Francisco, CA, April 27-May 2.

Pica-Smith, C. & Veloria, C. (2012). “At risk means a minority kid:” Deconstructing deficit discourses in the study of risk in education and human services. Paper presented at the New England Educational Research Organization, NEERO, Portsmouth, NH, April 17.

Pica-Smith, C. & Veloria, C. (2012). Deconstructing deficit discourses with predominantly white students. Paper presented at Harvard’s Graduate School of Education AOC Conference, Cambridge, MA, March 2-3.

Pica-Smith, C. (2011) Children’s perceptions of interracial friendships: Exploring age, race, and gender differences in children’s perspectives. Paper presented at the American Educational Research Association, New Orleans, LA, April 10-14.
Vernon-Jones, R. & Pica-Smith, C. (2010). Making your school or classroom a force for dismantling racism. Presentation at the 11th Annual White Privilege Conference, La Crosse, WI, April 7-10.

Vernon-Jones, R. & Pica-Smith, C. (2010). Moving white people to action. Presentation at the 11th Annual White Privilege Conference, La Crosse, WI, April 7-10.

Pica-Smith, C. (2010). Is this a space for friendship? Interracial and interethnic friendships among children. Paper presented at the 39th Annual Meeting of the Society for Cross Cultural Research, Albuquerque, NM, February 17-20.

Pica-Smith, C. (2009). Children’s voices on interethnic and interracial friendships in a multiethnic classroom. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association, San Diego, CA, April 13-17.

Rosenberger, C. & Pica, C. (2008). Access and equity: Race talk in teacher education. Paper presented at the School of Education UMASS Amherst Centennial Marathon Research Conference, Amherst, MA, June 13-14.

Pica, C. (2008). “Design your own life!” Thoughts on ethnicity, race, and parenting bi-racial children. Paper presented at the Annual Conference of Narrative Matters, Toronto, Canada, May 7-10.

Pica, C. (2008). Children’s perceptions of interethnic/interracial friendships in a multiethnic school context. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association, New York, NY, March 24-29.

Rosenberger, C., Gallman, S.A., & Pica, C. (2008). Equity, complacency, compliance and conformity: teacher educators, pre-service teachers and social justice practices. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association, New York, NY, March 24-29.

Pica, C. (2008). The ecology of friendships: children’s meaning-making processes on interethnic friendship-making in context. Paper presented at the Biennial Conference on Human Development, Indianapolis, IN April 4-6.

Pica, C. (2006). Cross-race friendships: a developmental investigation of children’s changing attitudes. Paper presented at the Conference on Human Development, Louisville, KY, April 28-30.

Grants and Awards

Awards

2023 The Society of Professors of Education, Outstanding Book Award, Honorable Mention

2022 Paul Ziegler Presidential Award for Excellence in Scholarship

2022 The Society for Professors of Education Outstanding Book Award, Honorable Mention

2019 American Educational Studies Association’s Critics Choice Book Award

2017 article chosen for publication in the American School Counseling Association’s Ethical and legal issues in school counseling (4th edition)

2016 Kim Fries Early Career Award, New England Educational Research Organization

2013 Distinguished Paper, American Educational Research Association

2012 Rubovits Award for Best Paper, New England Educational Research Organization

2012 Distinguished Education Research Article Award, Honorable Mention, Journal of Research in Childhood Education, Association for Childhood Education International (ACEI)

2007 Joseph W. Keilty Memorial Scholarship

2006 Winner of the John Schmitt Award for Outstanding Research, New England Educational Research Organization

2005 University of Massachusetts Amherst School of Education Early Childhood Education Scholarship
Grants

2022-2024 Assumption University Course Load Reduction for Scholarship Grant

2020 Istituto Ateneo di Ricerca Research Fellowship, Universita’ Chieti-Pescara

2019 Assumption College Faculty Development Grant Recipient

2017 Assumption College Faculty Development Grant Recipient

2017 NetVUE and The Council of Independent Colleges Grant

2013 Assumption College Faculty Development Grant Recipient

Assumption College 2013 Faculty Development Grant Recipient

2012 Distinguished Education Research Article Award, Honorable Mention, Journal of Research in Childhood Education, Association for Childhood Education International (ACEI)

2010 Assumption College Faculty Development Grant Recipient

Graduate Level Member and Co-Chair of the Assumption College Chapter of Tau Upsilon Alpha, National Organization for Human Services Honor Society

2008 University of Massachusetts—Amherst, School of Education Research Grant

2007 University of Massachusetts—Amherst, School of Education Dissertation Grant

2006-2007 Joseph W. Keilty Memorial Scholarship Recipient

2005-2006 University of Massachusetts Amherst School of Education Early Childhood Education Scholarship Recipient