Message from the Dean: Spring 2017

May 20, 2017
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Dr. Michael K. McLendon
Dean, School of Education

Collaboration has long been a hallmark of the School of Education. We believe that meaningful partnerships — working together in community — deepens our impact by opening new doors to discovery and multiplying our capabilities.

An important new undertaking on campus, the Baylor Social Innovation Collaborative (BAY-SIC), is encouraging collaboration campus wide in new and exciting endeavors designed to promote human flourishing.

Of the large number of proposals submitted to the program by
Baylor faculty, three of the five Social Innovation Labs announced for the 2017-2018 academic year are pioneered by our SOE faculty. These BAY-SIC partnerships comprise a research component as well as academic class offerings.

SOE efforts include the “Campus Hunger” initiative, inspired by the research of Dr. Nathan Alleman in the Department of Educational Leadership and highlighted in the cover story of this issue. In addition, Dr. Suzanne Nesmith, associate dean and associate professor, and Dr. Sandi Cooper, professor in Curriculum & Instruction, are part of the “Healthy River, Healthy Community” project, exploring local water issues as a model for better understanding global water issues. And Dr. Lakia Scott, assistant professor of Curriculum & Instruction, is teaming on the “Combatting Human Trafficking Innovation Lab.”

Possibly the School of Education’s best known partnership, the long-standing Professional Development School program, takes our undergraduate teacher-education students into community schools to work in classrooms with expert professional teachers, guided by our expert faculty. These partnerships benefit all involved — our Baylor students, preK-12 students, teachers, school leaders, and faculty — and the success of our partnership with Midway ISD is highlighted in this issue of Impact with the news of a major national award.

In a newer collaboration, about which you will hear more in the future, faculty and graduate students in our Department of Educational Psychology are providing important and innovative behavioral management in Waco ISD through direct on-campus intervention and teacher training. Led by clinical assistant professor Kristen Padilla-Mainor, this three-year grant program will provide rich data and research for multiplying impact in the district and beyond.

The myriad benefits of strong partnerships have long been familiar to the SOE family, and we are grateful for the foundation built by our faculty, partners, and students. Your legacy continues through these new and diverse efforts, enhancing our impact in the coming years.
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