Marrs McLean Science Building Courtyard is the place to be March 22 from 4-6 p.m. Mark your calendars! Baylor School of Education is celebrating with live music from In10City Band, fun giveaways, games, fantastic prize drawings, George’s catering, a photo booth and more!
March 22, 1919, is the actual date that the Baylor Board of Trustees voted to create the School of Education as a separate academic unit dedicated to preparing educators.
Suzanne Nesmith, Ph.D., is passionate about the integration of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) across the disciplines, and now she has taken that commitment to new heights. A science educator, associate professor and associate dean in the Baylor University School of Education, Nesmith is serving as president of the School Science and Mathematics Association (SSMA), a multi-disciplinary organization founded in 1901. Her two-year term as president runs until the fall of 2020.
SSMA brings together researchers and teachers to promote research, scholarship and practice to improve school science and mathematics and to advance the integration of school science and mathematics.
“The organization was multi-disciplinary very early in its history and is the oldest STEM organization in its addressing of more than one content area,” Nesmith said. “And that’s why it’s one of my favorite organizations and I get so much out of it, because we have individuals with expertise in different fields coming together and recognizing the value of looking at things from these different perspectives.”
Baylor School of Education graduate Dr. Neil Shanks, who will join the Baylor faculty in the fall, received the 2018 Larry Metcalf Exemplary Dissertation Award from the National Council for the Social Studies. The award recognizes outstanding research completed in pursuit of a doctoral degree.
Shanks graduated from Baylor University in 2009 with a Bachelor of Science in Education and in 2014 with a Master of Science in Education. He then completed his doctorate in social studies education at the University of Texas.
Maria Franquiz, Ph.D., a national expert on bilingual education and professor at the University of Utah College of Education, has chosen a Baylor University-related theme of “Illuminate” for her Feb. 19 campus lecture, “Illuminating the World Through the Gift of Bilingualism.”
“The theme to ‘Illuminate’ is beautiful. It allows us to see what is familiar while at the same time widening our seeing to what is unfamiliar. This broader view can offer new insights for becoming our best selves,” she said.
Franquiz will deliver the Centennial Lecture for the Baylor School of Education, co-sponsored by the Baylor Office of the Vice Provost for Research, at 5 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 19, in Packard Auditorium (101) of the Marrs McLean Science Building, 1214 S. Fourth St., on the Baylor campus.
Many seniors feel the pressure of the unknown that inevitably comes as they anticipate life after college. For elementary education senior Olivia Moses, however, this pressure began to subside due to her involvement with the Baylor McNair Scholars Program.
Last fall, Moses was among Baylor’s first group of McNair Scholars, chosen after the program launched at Baylor. Over 150 other universities have the program, giving McNair students a broad network of resources and support.
The McNair Scholars Program is a federally funded program that helps low-income and first-generation undergraduates — as well as students who come from groups underrepresented in graduate education — prepare for the path to doctoral degree programs through a variety of scholarly activities, including immersion in research with a mentor. The program also provides financial planning for graduate school success, summer research internships with stipends, and the opportunity to attend academic conferences.
Four graduates of the Baylor Sport Management master’s program are making significant contributions as part of elite college basketball programs — right here at Baylor, where both the women’s and men’s basketball teams are vying for conference titles and the Lady Bears are ranked No. 1 in the nation.
Three graduates are working in the men’s basketball program and one in women’s basketball. They said that the Sport Management (SPM) program, which they completed through the School of Education’s Department of Educational Leadership, taught them to foster personal relationships as well as master financial management, facility and event management, marketing, psychology, and ethical issues in the sports world.
While Baylor School of Education is celebrating 100 years, we have another important “100” to celebrate — a 100% pass rate on certification exams by Baylor School of Education graduates!
The Baylor School of Education is celebrating its Centennial year of preparing teachers to go into the field of education equipped to make a positive difference in the lives of children, communities, the nation, and our world. As we reflect on the rich history of the Baylor School of Education, we celebrate many accomplishments, and there are certainly many to celebrate. One is the amazing success of the Baylor School of Education graduates on the examinations required to become educators.
The Texas State Board of Educator Certification report for the 2017 – 2018 has recently been released. And, once again, teacher education graduates of the Baylor School of Education boast a 100% pass rate on the examinations that are required for preservice teachers to be recommended for certification – 100% for both the content and pedagogy Texas Examinations of Educator Standards (TExES) tests! This is the fifth year in a row that Baylor School of Education graduates can claim a 100% pass rate.
Courtney Jerkins, a student in the EdD in K-12 Educational Leadership program in the Baylor School of Education’s Department of Educational Leadership, is one of two educational leaders statewide to receive a special TASA scholarship.
Jerkins, Coordinator of Elementary Science/Social Studies and English Learners for Midway ISD near Waco, will receive the 2019 Johnny L. Veselka Scholarship from the Texas Association of School Administrators (TASA) at the group’s Midwinter Conference Jan. 27-30 in Austin. The scholarship recognizes the leadership of Dr. Johnny L. Veselka, who dedicated nearly 44 years of service to the association, including 32 years as TASA’s executive director. TASA awards the scholarship annually to two outstanding doctoral students pursuing careers in educational leadership, with particular emphasis on the superintendency.
School of Education faculty members presented research at the 68th annual conference of the Literacy Research Association, a prominent national conference on literacy studies. The conference was held Nov. 8 – Dec. 1.
Dr. Kelly Johnston and Dr. Phil Nichols, both assistant professors in the Dept. of Curriculum & Instruction, presented several research sessions and served in other leadership roles.
The year 2019 marks the 100th birthday of the Baylor School of Education as a separate academic unit at the University. During this year, numerous events and publications will celebrate the long commitment of Baylor University to K-12 as well as higher education and share a vision for the future.
To stay updated on all SOE Centennial news and learn more about our history, visit the Centennial website at baylor.edu/SOE/100 and follow the hashtag #baylorSOE100 on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram (@baylorSOE).
Faculty members Dr. Sandi Cooper and Dr. Suzanne Nesmith were featured guests on the "Central Texas Living" program hosted by Ann Harder on KXXV-TV. Cooper and Nesmith won a national award from the School Science and Math Association for a series of professional development workshops for teachers and student teachers at Waco ISD schools.
Navigating life with a learning disability may bring various challenges. That is why on Thursday, Nov. 29, Baylor University invited 70 students ages 8 to 17 from Goldthwaite Independent School District to campus for a presentation by four Baylor School of Education graduate students about dyslexia and how to thrive despite challenges.
Graduate students Olivia Borba, Stephanie Fritz, Felicity Frost and Ally Yturralde are each working towards an educational specialist degree in school psychology. They are currently working in schools for a practicum, and this event exposed to them to children of all ages with academic struggles.
The School Science and Mathematics Association has awarded the Baylor University School of Education and Waco ISD collaborators the Award for Excellence in Integrating Science and Mathematics for highlighting Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) use in two Waco ISD elementary schools. They received the award at the SSMA convention in October.
Sandi Cooper, Ph.D., professor of mathematics education, and Suzanne Nesmith, Ph.D., associate dean and associate professor of science education in curriculum and instruction, approached the principals of Mountainview Elementary and Bell’s Hill Elementary with the idea of working with a small group of teachers to learn the importance of STEM for early learners. The schools wanted to take it a step further and include every teacher on both campuses.
In this issue, you’ll meet the FIRST graduate of the SOE’s PhD in Higher Education Studies & Leadership program, learn about the SOE’s FIRST fully online program, read about an alumna with a Fulbright Scholarship and a new program for rural families of children with autism — plus much, much more!
School of Education graduates should have received a printed copy of Impact in the mail. If you are a graduate and did not receive a printed copy, please email BaylorImpact@baylor.edu. Also feel free to email us with any news that the School needs to know!
The Honorable Chet Edwards, former U.S. Representative and Baylor’s W.R. Poage Distinguished Chair of Public Service, will present “Education and Education Policy” on Thursday, Nov. 8, from 5 to 5:45 p.m. in room 101 (Packard Auditorium) of Marrs McLean Science Building. The event is sponsored by the School of Education’s Department of Curriculum & Instruction.
Ten years ago, Bryan Lizano was a fifth-grade boy in Costa Rica, carefully watching a group of Baylor School of Education students completing mission work at Santa Elena School. He noticed how different these Baylor students were. It wasn’t just their accents and the slang they used. It was all the knowledge they shared about a university they loved. Lizano, a Nicaraguan refugee, liked the image of Baylor they showed by their service projects — painting the school’s walls, teaching, and developing relationships with the students.
As the idea of Baylor became more vivid each year the students came back, Lizano realized he wanted to become a Baylor student himself. Through support from Baylor students and professors, a dream became reality for Lizano, a freshman interested in studying computer sciences and the first graduate of his technical high school to attend a university in the U.S., with a full tuition scholarship to Baylor.
Recently, the nation heard from former U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, the first woman to serve on the nation’s highest court, that she is officially stepping away from public life due to health reasons.
In her letter to the nation, O’Connor shared about her commitment to civics education and, specifically, the creation of iCivics – free online interactive games and curriculum designed to teach the core principles of civics to middle and high school students.
Brooke Blevins, Ph.D., serves as associate professor of social studies education and associate chair of the department of curriculum and instruction in Baylor’s School of Education. She and Karon LeCompte, Ph.D., associate professor of curriculum and instruction, conducted the first independent research study of iCivics effectiveness. Blevins and LeCompte also launched iEngage Summer Civics Institute. The researchers were honored by O’Connor for their research and commitment to iCivics and civics education.
Baylor School of Education hosted educators from dozens of school districts for the annual Baylor TAIR (Texas Association for the Improvement of Reading) Regional Conference on Oct. 1 and 2. Almost 900 educators gathered at the Region 12 Education Service Center for three different grade-level based conferences. Attendees shared knowledge and skills with each other while gaining unique insight from a variety of national speakers.
TAIR President Margaret Thomson, senior lecturer in the School of Education, says her favorite part of being involved with this conference has been getting to know educators from all over the region that have the same interests as she does. “Every year you can get new ideas and get re-energized,” Thomson said. “This conference is for educators all across the board, because I think the best teachers keep getting professional development — they keep updating their skills.”
Baylor School of Education’s EnAbled for College project recently received a $75,000 renewal grant from the AT&T Foundation. The mentoring program increases marginalized high school students’ likeliness of choosing higher education by covering topics ranging from completing a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to how to talk to a professor.
The program began with graduate students from the Department of Educational Psychology mentoring 52 disabled, at-risk or low socioeconomic status high school students through the process of reaching higher education. Since 2014, the program has served more than 150 students in McLennan County in Central Texas. Of those students, 71 percent were from low socioeconomic homes, 48 percent had a disability, and 74 percent were first generation students. With the help of the EnAbled program, 97 percent of the participants were accepted into college.
Baylor School of Education is hosting the annual Homecoming Tailgate on Saturday, Nov. 3, after the parade and before the game. It's free, but registration is required. Register here: https://baylor.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_6Rld1x3zT176RqR
After learning about 360º film technology, known as Cinematic Virtual Reality (CVR) in a Baylor Film and Digital Media course, SOE doctoral student Amanda Gardner became interested in its implications for high school English classroom learning. For her dissertation, she created a 360-degree experience to teach about the poet Elizabeth Barrett Browning.
Dr. Lakia Scott, assistant professor in the School of Education’s Department of Curriculum & Instruction, received the 2018 Baylor Diversity Enhancement Award, presented at a reception in the President’s Suite of McLane Stadium on Sept. 6.
In presenting the award, Eloisa Haynes, assistant director of advancement services and chair of the Campus Diversity Committee, said the award “recognizes the efforts of one individual within the Baylor community who actively strengthens and promotes respect for diversity through innovative leadership and service or through practices and programs designed to enhance a climate of understanding and respect throughout the campus community.”
She said the committee singled out Scott for her efforts in promoting the recruitment and retention of first-generation college students; serving as advisor to the multicultural student organization ROOTS; mentoring young women of color; establishing a reputation for being empathetic and supportive of students from traditionally marginalized backgrounds; and focusing her research on multicultural awareness, diversity practices and urban literacy.”
Baylor School of Education has launched searches for five faculty positions within all three departments of the School for tenured and clinical positions that will begin in August of 2019.
Baylor’s School of Education, which will celebrate its 100th anniversary in 2019, ranks among the nation’s top 20 education schools located at private universities. With 50 full-time faculty members, the School’s growing research portfolio complements its long-standing commitment to excellence in teaching and student mentoring.
Baylor School of Education’s Learning Resources Center (LRC) underwent a renovation this summer and is hosting a grand re-opening Thursday, Sept. 6, from 3-4 p.m. The LRC has changed a lot, thanks to a grant of $100,000 from an anonymous donor. During the grand re-opening, the LRC and Media Center will showcase the renovations, give away door prizes, and provide refreshments in the LRC.
A survey last year found that School of Education students needed more resources for collaboration and conference-style studying. When Pam Voyles, Librarian and Director of the Learning Resources Center, joined the SOE team in March of 2018, she jumped wholeheartedly into the makeover to ensure students have a modern and comfortable space to work.
“Over the past six months, we’ve touched every book in the library,” Voyles said. “We’re weeding out what we don’t need, ordering what we do, and logging everything online so students can find exactly what they need,” Voyles said. “We’ve also upgraded the details like installing bright lettering, so students can find the right areas they need quickly, and making sure there are enough electrical outlets in the tables for laptops.”
Baylor University School of Education and Baylor Movie Mondays, a program of Baylor’s Department of Student Activities, will host a showing of the documentary BACKPACK FULL OF CASH, narrated by Matt Damon and billed as “a film exploring the real cost of privatizing America’s public schools.”
The movie will show at 6 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 10, in the SBC Theatre of the Mayborn Museum Complex. It will be the semester’s first installment of Movie Monday. It is free and open to the public.
After the film, an expert panel of education leaders will discuss the film and how the issues explored in it apply to Waco-area schools.
Marcus Nelson, superintendent, Waco ISD Bonnie Lesley, co-founder, Texas Kids Can’t Wait Matthew Polk, executive director, Prosper Waco Alexis Neumann, superintendent, Rapoport Academy Public School