UMUC Welcomes New Chair of Education Department

Higher education veteran Virginia Pilato, PhD, joins UMUC as chair of education department and director of teacher education in the Graduate School of Management and Technology

By Kerry O'Neill ( |   April 24, 2009

ADELPHI, Md. (April 24, 2009) – UMUC today announced the addition of Virginia Pilato, PhD, as chair of the education department and director of teacher education in the Graduate School of Management and Technology. In her new role, Dr. Pilato will be responsible for overseeing and managing the ongoing development and implementation of the new Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) program, which launches this fall. She will also lead and support other faculty in developing other teacher education programs. Dr. Pilato comes to UMUC following an 18-year career with the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE), where she served most recently as the state director of certification and accreditation.

“With more than 40 years of experience in education, Dr. Pilato is an extremely talented addition to the UMUC team, and we are confident that she will enhance UMUC’s mission of providing quality higher education to our students,” said UMUC President Susan C. Aldridge. “Dr. Pilato’s expertise will be a significant advantage for UMUC as we work to build our teacher education program and faculty—and respond to teacher shortages in secondary education—starting with our new MAT.”

During her distinguished career, Dr. Pilato has published widely, directed a number of federally-funded projects supporting teacher development and developed several training and accountability systems at the national and state level. She has served on numerous national committees, including the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) State Partnership Board and Board of Examiners. As a result of her work with the NCATE, she was chosen as a member of the Teacher Recognition Council of the Center for Quality Assurance in International Education.

Dr. Pilato is also the past president of the National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification, and she was the only state representative invited to participate in the conceptualization stage as the U.S. Department of Education prepared for the 1998 reauthorization of the Higher Education Act – Title II – Teacher Quality. She is a nationally recognized authority on teacher education, alternative preparation, teacher mobility and teacher recruitment and retention.

Dr. Pilato holds a PhD and master’s degree in reading, along with a bachelor’s degree in English, from the University of Maryland, College Park. She began her college studies at UMUC’s Munich campus in Germany.