Skip to Main Content


2022 Plenary Speaker


Wessam Abdelaziz

Advocate, Collaborate and Celebrate!

12:00 - 1:30 pm

My watch keeps telling me to take a mindful moment to pause and just be. I just press the button to cancel this notification because I don’t know what to do with these mindfulness reminders. A few minutes later, my watch tells me to stand up. I tell myself, after this email or as soon as I am done with this document, I will take a break. I never do, though. I don’t listen to MY watch although it is advocating for my own mental and emotional health. However, when/if my watch tells me that I achieved my goal for the day, I get excited and I feel proud. Isn’t it time to listen to our “watches” and celebrate our ELs AND ourselves?

Wessam Abdelaziz is a native of Alexandria, Egypt and currently serving as coordinator of English as a Second Language (ESL) and World Languages at Kalamazoo Public Schools (KPS). Wessam received his B.A. in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages from Alexandria University, Egypt in 2006. After two years of teaching in Egypt, he was awarded the Fulbright Scholarship hosted by The University of Connecticut.  He continued his educational journey with two graduate degrees; one in Applied Linguistics and another in Evaluation, Measurement, and Research and now finishing up his doctoral program at Western Michigan University. He has teaching experiences in the US and internationally that range from elementary to college level. Before coming to KPS, Wessam had the pleasure of working in different institutions like Western Michigan University, Middlebury College, the University of Utah, Kalamazoo College, and the Center for Applied Linguistics in D.C. He is married and has two sons. He enjoys playing and coaching soccer.