Dr. Nuñez’s three main teaching areas include: (1) college access, identity, and development; (2) higher education organizations and systems; and (3) research and evaluation design. She strives to impart skills to students to be thoughtful stewards of the theories, methods, and research they consume and produce. Accordingly, her teaching approaches engage students in applications of work to policy and practice, and incorporate up-to-date and understudied perspectives to complement more traditional knowledge. Her teaching approaches demonstrate caring for students and validating their perspectives, so that they feel comfortable asking questions and exploring challenging topics, and will continue critical and expansive habits of mind in the future.
Her teaching was nationally recognized in 2016 by the White House Commission on Educational Excellence for Hispanics through its #LatinosTeach initiative. That initiative highlighted eight leading faculty around the country who have demonstrated significant commitment to mentoring and supporting Latinx students. Notably, just four percent of faculty across the nation are Latinx, despite a total undergraduate enrollment in the U.S. that is nearly 20 percent Latinx. In her career, Dr. Núñez has mentored several junior scholars, including many from Latinx backgrounds.