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
The Baylor School of Education prepares graduates for the classroom through rigorous coursework as well as intense faculty-guided field experiences. But how did the 2017 grads really do in their own classrooms? Read the reflections of five graduates after their first year of teaching. (BTW, job placement for our May 2017 BSEd graduates seeking teaching positions was 100 percent!)
Dr. Matt Thomas joined the Baylor School of Education (SOE) on Aug. 1 as executive director of the SOE’s Center for Christian Education. Founded in 1985, the CCE is dedicated to advancing evidence-based approaches to educational improvement and values-driven leadership through a range of programming and resources.
SOE Interim Dean Dr. Terrill Saxon said the center will undergo an expansion as the result of a significant gift to the SOE from Lynda, BSEd ’79 (MA ’85 in education from Texas Wesleyan College), and Robert, BBA ’80, MPA ’81, Copple of Frisco, and this appointment is an important first step in realizing an ambitious agenda for the center’s future.
“Matt’s background in Christian education and his commitment to the training of strong Christian leaders make him a perfect fit for the expanded role of the SOE’s Center for Christian Education,” Saxon said. “His expertise will launch a new era for the center and help shape its future.”
One hundred fifth- through ninth-graders will learn about civics and how to be engaged, active citizens during the annual Baylor University iEngage Summer Civics Institute July 30-Aug. 3 on the Baylor campus. The camp, in its sixth year, is hosted by Baylor School of Education through a grant from the Hatton W. Sumners Foundation.
The iEngage camp’s curriculum teaches children about civic action and political participation, as they meet local civic leaders and elected officials before developing an action plan for civic change. During the weeklong camp, they learn about the structure of government and other civic-related topics by playing digital games on www.iCivics.org, a free online website founded by retired Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor that teaches civics concepts using educational games.
A federal grant of $91,000 from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), plus matching support of $30,000 from Baylor University, will bring together Baylor scientists, science educators and local teachers in an effort to teach the next generation about water quality and reuse.
From July 30 through Aug. 3, 20 Waco-area science teachers from grades 4-12 will participate in a field-based professional-development experience based at the Lake Waco Wetlands (LWW). The program – “Immersed in the Wetlands: An Environmental Academy for Educators” – will engage the educators in inquiry- and field-based environmental education methods, so they then can share those methods with their own students in local classrooms.
Baylor School of Education is welcoming 50 middle and secondary mathematics teachers from across Texas to the Mathematics Teacher Academy (MTA) on the Baylor campus July 24-26.
Teachers are coming from 26 schools, including districts in the Houston, Dallas and San Antonio areas. This is the second year the SOE’s Department of Curriculum & Instruction has offered this professional development opportunity, which is co-directed by Dr. Trena Wilkerson, professor of secondary mathematics, and Dr. Rachelle Rogers, clinical associate professor of middle grades mathematics.
The theme of this year’s academy is “Supporting Students in Productive Struggle Across Mathematical Content Areas.”
Baylor University’s School of Education will host 240 teachers for a three-day Summer Literacy Institute July 24-26 at the Paul L. Foster Campus for Business and Innovation.
Launched in 2016, the Summer Literacy Institute is an annual professional development event that focuses on practical help for teachers. This year’s conference addresses struggling readers and writers in grades 4 through 12, covering strategies for engagement, comprehension, vocabulary and revision.
“Students should understand the basics of reading and writing by the end of the third grade,” said Margaret Thomson, senior lecturer in the School of Education and a conference co-director. “But many students do not go beyond basics skills and develop the ability to comprehend complex text and write at the level required in today’s workplace.”
The Math for Early Learners Academy (MELA), now in its third year sponsored by the Baylor University School of Education, is underway through July 27 at Baylor’s Mayborn Museum, and research is showing that the summer early-intervention program serving early childhood students in Waco ISD is showing positive results.
Baylor faculty and graduate students have conducted follow-up math assessments of the students both of the previous years and found that the program is making a difference.
“After participating in MELA, students who were previously identified as being consistently below their peers in mathematics were found to be indistinguishable from their peers on a test of broad math ability,” said Sandi Cooper, Ph.D., professor of mathematics education in the department of curriculum and instruction and founder and director of MELA. “This suggests that participating in MELA enabled these students to not only make progress in math ability but also to close the gap between them and their peers.”
The School of Education welcomed 50 students and seven teachers from the Valley Mills ISD (VMISD) After School Centers on Education (ACE) program to the Baylor University School of Education on Thursday, June 14. Dr. Tony L. Talbert and Dr. Sandra Talbert chose a superhero theme for the visit, inducting the students into the “Green and Gold Illuminate League” based on the students’ strong educational powers.
The Talberts captured the VMISD-ACE students’ attention by telling them that they all have unique superpowers. Donning a red cape emblazoned with a golden “S,” Dr. Tony Talbert became the character of “Super Teacher” and asked the students, “How many of you can tell me your favorite superheroine and a superhero?” Enthusiastically the students called out their favorite characters — Wonder Woman, Black Panther, Batgirl, Batman, Supergirl and Superman.
Surviving on dry cereal and ramen can be typical for a surprising number of college students, even at Baylor. This realization led School of Education doctoral candidate Cara Cliburn Allen to focus her research in Higher Education Studies on food insecurity — the inability to access three nutritious meals a day.
Her passion and interest in “at-risk” student populations led to a recent $15,000 scholarship award from the P.E.O. Scholar Awards program, a merit-based award for women conducting research in a doctoral program, that she will use to further her study on how food insecurity shapes students’ identity formation.
Dr. Rishi Sriram, associate professor in the Department of Educational Leadership, is one of three Baylor University professors selected as the 2018 Baylor Centennial Professors by the Centennial Faculty Development Review Committee. Sriram will travel for a week in June to Elon University in Elon, North Carolina, to attend a research seminar on Residential Learning Communities (RCLs) with the goal of publishing three peer-reviewed journal articles.
The Spring 2018 issue of Baylor Impact is now available online. Check it out for stories about Baylor School of Education students, faculty, alumni and programs.
In this issue, you’ll find news of a prestigious national award and of a $2.5 million gift to the School, plus an inside look the SOE’s “Introduction to Teaching” class for first-year students, a faculty feature on Dr. Susan Johnsen, and news of publications in higher education studies — 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!
Baylor School of Education (SOE) is launching its first online program — the EdD in Learning and Organizational Change through the Department of Curriculum & Instruction (C&I). The new program is accepting applications immediately with a deadline of July 9, 2018, for fall 2018 classes.
Baylor is offering the program in partnership with the company 2U, Inc., to deliver instruction.
Dr. Sandi Cooper, professor in C&I and director of the program, said 2U is providing the technology platform, student support services, marketing and analytics, while the University and SOE faculty in C&I will maintain responsibility and control for all academic functions —admissions decisions, teaching, guiding students’ research work, and any other academic-related matters.
“At the core of the instructional delivery model is a genuine respect for what has always made Baylor great — a caring Christian environment, a strong and independent faculty, a commitment to academic rigor and scholarship, and a community of learners engaging in the critical interplay that comes from the intimacy of a live classroom,” Cooper said.
Dr. Rachelle Rogers brings “unmatched energy and genuine warmth” to the teaching of her mathematics courses, inspiring her Baylor students to dream of becoming just the kind of effective teacher that she is.
Now Baylor University has recognized Rogers’ outstanding classroom abilities by awarding her the Outstanding Faculty Award in Teaching for 2018. A clinical associate professor in the School of Education’s (SOE) Department of Curriculum & Instruction, Rogers began teaching at Baylor in 2003 when she was a doctoral student.
Two teachers were honored at the annual Baylor University School of Education Senior Recognition Banquet on April 26. Following tradition, Baylor School of Education seniors had the opportunity to nominate teachers who had been influential in their lives. Students submitted a nomination essay about their teacher, and the awarded educators were chosen by a Baylor faculty committee.
This year Regina Moschitta of Atoka, Tennessee, and Monica Regan of Georgetown in Washington, D.C., were honored with the Baylor School of Education’s “Most Memorable Teacher” award.
2U, Inc. (NASDAQ: TWOU), a global leader in education technology, today announced a partnership with Baylor University to deliver three online graduate degree programs: Education@Baylor, an online Doctor of Education (EdD) in Learning and Organizational Change; MPH@Baylor, an online Master of Public Health (MPH) with a specialization in Community Health; and MSW@Baylor, an online Master of Social Work (MSW). Each of these three programs will be a new Domestic Graduate Program (DGP) for 2U.
“Graduate professional education is a key component of Baylor’s academic strategic plan, Illuminate, which focuses on building on the University’s strengths as a research institution while enhancing our strong faith tradition,” said Baylor President Linda A. Livingstone, Ph.D. “The launch of online graduate programs in a collaborative partnership with 2U will undergird our efforts, advance Baylor’s online academic presence and expand access to students who desire a distinct, Christian-focused education.”
Junior Gigi Mendoza, who is majoring in all-level special education (SPED), knew she had found her calling when she walked into the Functional Academics SPED classroom at Midway High School. “It just feels like this is where I belong,” she said. “It’s a God thing.”
During her first two and a half years in the Baylor School of Education, Mendoza had several special education field placements, including clinic settings and inclusion classrooms at different age levels.
“The School of Education (SOE) gives us a variety of field experiences, and I liked everything,” Mendoza said. But this semester, she realized that this kind of classroom, focusing on life skills for older students, is exactly where she wants to be.
Mendoza is one of 10 Baylor students who are at the junior “Teaching Associate” level majoring in all-level SPED. They spend several mornings every week on a local school campus. At Midway, they arrive at 7:30 a.m. and spend two class periods with the students in this self-contained SPED classroom every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
Senior teaching interns in the Baylor School of Education (SOE) are learning to improve their teaching practice through research in the classrooms where they are student teaching. Called “Action Research,” the projects completed by the seniors will be showcased at the Action Research Symposium this week.
The symposium will be Thursday, April 12, from 4:30-6 p.m. at the Lee Lockwood Library, 2801 West Waco Drive. Baylor faculty members, plus teachers and administrators from Baylor’s partner schools, will get to see the project results and discuss them with students.