Photo of Cheryl Coan "As a Marquette graduate, I know firsthand the transformative power of a Jesuit education. I have a special passion for working with adult learners, since I too returned to school as an adult and know the challenges and rewards that come with an adult learning experience. Having been with CPS since the first class opened, I have a deep passion and love for the college and the students. Our adult students bring a diverse array of talent and life experiences that make each day in the classroom a learning experience for me as well as the students."

Cheryl Coan, M.A.

Courses Taught

  • LEOR 3150: Leadership and Diversity in Organizations (Undergraduate Level)
  • LEOR 3440: Leaders as Agents of Change (Undergraduate Level)
  • LEOR 4931: Sp. Topics in Servant Leadership (Undergraduate Level)
  • LEOR 4997: Integrating Seminar (Undergraduate Level)
  • LEDR 6030: Qualitative Research (Graduate Level)
  • NPSE 6530: Social Justice and Social Activism
  • PUBS 6235: Comm. & Mgmt in Urban Service (Graduate Level)



  • University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Ph.D., Urban Education with a specialty in Multicultural Education (ABD)
  • Marquette University, M.A., Communication and Rhetorical Studies
  • Alverno College, B.A., Professional Communication

Professional Experiences

  • Director of Operations and Programming- Future Milwaukee at Marquette University (2005)
  • College of Communication- Marquette University College of Professional Studies (1995-1999)
  • Ronald E. McNair Program Marquette University (2003-2005)
  • Chairperson - CPS Faculty Curriculum Committee (2003 to present)
  • College of Professional Studies (1994-present)
  • Other teaching experience – Alverno College, UW-Parkside, Gonzaga University (Online), Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design

Research Interests

  • Issues in diversity and leadership, particularly race, class, gender, and ability
  • Adult education and transformative learning
  • Critical pedagogy
  • Multicultural education and curriculum
  • Qualitative research methods
  • Social justice issues
  • Curriculum development
  • Community service, leadership and community

Professional Affiliations

  • Adult Higher Education Alliance (AHEA), Secretary
  • American Educational Research Association
  • Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development
  • National Initiative for Women in Higher Education
  • Association of American University Women
  • Community Leadership Association

Presentations and Publications

  • AHEA Conference Mobile AL  (2008)  - Animating Adult Learning Workshop – Helping, Fixing, Serving: Students Learning to Serve and Be in Community
  • AHEA Conference Asheville, NC (2006)– Extending the Boundaries of Adult Learning, Solo Paper -“Redesigning a Curriculum for Adults: Focus on Leadership, Service, and Social Justice”, and Group Paper – “Called to Story: Narrative and  the Adult Learner”
  • AACU Diversity and Learning Conference Presentation, St. Louis - Presented: “Using Blackboard to Enhance Face-to-Face Discussions in a Cultural Diversity Class”


Contact College of Professional Studies

Email the college

Marquette University College of Professional Studies
707 Building, Room 403
P.O. Box 1881
Milwaukee WI 53201-1881
Phone: (414) 288-3153 or (800) 793-6450, extension 2
FAX: (414) 288-3298