"Dr. Diaz-Wionczek is a multiculturalist, media consultant, researcher, and widely published academic. She has given a TEDx talk on ethnic identity, lectured at a variety of colleges and universities, and presented her work at multiple media forums.
As Head of Education Research for Nickelodeon’s Dora the Explorer, Go, Diego, Go! and Dora & Friends, she played a crucial role in the shows’ evolution from merely featuring Latino characters to intentionally teaching Spanish, highlighting dual language competencies, and promoting Latino culture in ways that resonated with everyone. Mariana has a talent for contextualizing her work, adapting research to meet the needs that emerge from fast-evolving media.
Born to a Polish mom and a Mexican-Spaniard dad, Mariana grew up in two of the most cosmopolitan cities of the word – Mexico City and New York City, and considers herself a multiculturalist. She currently lives in Astoria, NY with her two teen sons and Annie-the-dog.
Mariana obtained a B.A. in Psychology from the National Autonomous University of Mexico and a Ph.D. in Psychology from CUNY’s Graduate Center, with a focus on cognition. She received funding for her doctoral studies from Ford MacArthur Foundation and the Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología, CONACYT.
Mariana has been featured discussing formative research and cultural relevance in Dora’s 10th Anniversary documentary, American Latino, Nickelodeon’s sizzle reel, and the Joan Ganz Cooney publications, among others.
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