Coley was named one of "10 Women Making Orange County a Better Place" in a recent edition of OC METRO magazine. "I grew up with the expectation that you are part of something bigger than yourself," she was quoted as saying. As dean, her biggest priority is teacher education. "There's an urgent need to increase the number of credentialed teachers to improve the opportunities for all children," she said. She is optimistic about the future of community service as a vocation: "Different entities and people can find different ways to contribute to the community. One can mentor a child, participate in offering an after-school program, or donate money or resources, all depending on one's inclination and ability."
The Orange County chapter of the National Association of Women Business Owners presented Coley with the Education Advocate Award in 1999 in recognition of her role at the university and as a volunteer in the community.
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