Category Archives: COE in the News

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College of Education Students Honored for Academic Excellence

On February 5, 2016, forty-five East Carolina University freshmen and full time transfer students with an intended Teacher Education major were honored during the College of Education ECU EXCELS event. This event was a part of the annual ECU EXCELS program that recognizes students who are first time, full-time freshman or transfer students who earned a 3.0 GPA or higher during the fall semester.

There were a total of one hundred and thirty-four guests in attendance which included both honored students and their guests. Dr. Grant Hayes, Dean of the College of Education, brought words of recognition to the award recipients. Rebecca Poole, a junior mathematics education major, served as the keynote speaker for the event.  Brandon Armstrong, senior music-string performance major, provided musical entertainment.  Students received a Certificate of Academic Achievement, had an opportunity to interact with College of Education faculty, and were served light refreshments at the event.

The College of Education is delighted to congratulate the following students who attended the ceremony:

Jacob Adkins Shamar Lamb
Kailey Aycock Hannah Lewis
Megan Baldwin Amber Meeks
Jocelyn Bayles Manda Murdock
Olivia Bell Hannah Parham
Courtney Benson Dakota Pavell
Virginia Grace Bibus Tara Rodriguez
Mary Bodmer Stephen Safrit
Anne Creech Ashley Sajecki
Amber Cross Meredith Sanderson
Olivia Crowe Samantha Schleiker
Jessica Curasi Megan Sealy
Haylie Dockery Aniah Smothers
Mackenzie Evans Amanda Supplee
Orianna Evans Megan Taylor
Savannah Flowers Eric Walls
Terri Gibson Abigail Westmoreland
Amanda Gonzalez Emily Whitaker
Tiffany Hicks Madison Whitehurst
Justin Hinz Connor Wilkins
Lauren Holloway Kimberly Williams
Leanna Jackson Star Wilson
Mary King

Please view the slideshow commemorating the 2016 COE ECU Excels Event: https://youtu.be/fRPMV7Sd11k

Any questions regarding the ECU Excels event for the College of Education should contact Dr. Amy Shannon, Lead Coordinator of Academic Advising, at 252-328-0067 or shannona@ecu.edu or Dr. Laura Bilbro-Berry, Assistant Director of the Office of Educator Preparation, at 252-328-1123 or bilbroberryl@ecu.edu .

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MLS Students at ECU Collect over 5,800 Books for the Needy

The end of each year is a time for many traditions, from caroling to trimming the tree to making a gingerbread house to pausing to give thanks, and the East Carolina University Master of Library Science program has developed and added its own tradition to the mix by annually completing a Holiday Book Drive. For ten years, the ECU American Library Association (ALA) Student Chapter has completed a book drive to help put over 25,000 books in the hands of willing but needy readers throughout North Carolina. The ECU MLS students take advantage of the fact they study in a Distance Education program and spread the good cheer of charitable literacy throughout several communities in the region.

Over 5,800 books were collected and donated to non-profit organizations, church programs for struggling families, schools, shelters, daycares, and food pantries.

This December, the ECU MLS program saw its faculty, current students, and alumni to work jointly in efforts to complete these collections. Many of the MLS students and alumni used the Annual Book Drive as an opportunity to include students in collection and donation, helping incorporate character education into school programs.

Kevin Vickers, an ECU alumnus and the librarian of Sun Valley Elementary in Monroe, NC, coordinated with a fourth grade teacher in his school to collect over 300 books and donate them to Turning Point of Union County, a shelter for victims of domestic abuse. Ever aware of the importance of technology and social media, Mr. Vickers posted information about the drive on his school’s Facebook site and watched the donations pour in. Parents and students asked if they could turn in books for all ages, and Vickers enthusiastically agreed. He excitedly reported that plenty of children and adult women were finding their reading needs met through the collection, and, asking “how cool is that?,” he was ecstatic to find several of the donations were in Spanish.

Kimberly Marone, the media coordinator of Holly Tree Elementary in Wilmington, NC, gathered over 125 titles as she and her students donated books to a local church program that provides services to families facing hardships. These books provide welcome relief and diversions in troubling times, as the gift of literacy and the opportunity for continued reading is an ever-welcome present.

Vanessa Taylor, a librarian currently completing her MLS through ECU, oversaw a donation project run by a Boy Scout throughout Onslow County. While her school (Dixon Elementary) donated over 200 books, the entire drive throughout the county brought in 4,700 total volumes. The young man clearly earned his merit badge by creating and maintaining fourteen collection sites around Jacksonville and Sneads Ferry and donating them to the Onslow County Partnership for Children. As Ms. Taylor said, his work was “quite amazing.”

Knowing that one of the strongest ways to support and increase literacy is within the community, with students helping students, Mary Tobin and her colleagues and students at Topsail Middle School collected 300 “gently used books” to donate to their local elementary schools. This middle school project proved and supported the idea that it takes a village, as older students gave the gift of reading to younger ones.

Hugh Davis, an MLS student in ECU’s program and an English teacher at CS Brown High School in Winton, NC, turned to his school’s Literary and Beta Clubs to complete the drive. Though CS Brown is a small school, with only 52 students this year, it collected 400 books and donated them to the Baptist Children’s Home. This shelter was selected by the students, who felt empowered through the process. Davis, the ECU ALA Chapter President, said that working alongside the students made the process even more meaningful, and he was thrilled to see the students take the initiative to research an appropriate donation site and to organize and coordinate their community’s efforts.

Not to be outdone or left out, the ECU MLS faculty continued their tradition of contributing to the Annual Book Drive by collecting and donating 19 books the Little Willie Center in Greenville, NC.

While many traditions abound at this time of year, one of the most rewarding is definitely the ECU MLS program’s Annual Book Drive. The ALA Chapter counts this year as a success and hopes to have as much participation next year.

Hugh Davis, President
ECU American Library Association Student Chapter

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2016 Instructional Technology Scholarship awarded to Donna Currie

Congratulations to Donna Currie, MSITE graduate student and Instructional Technology Facilitator with Wilson County Schools, for receiving the 2016 Instructional Technology Scholarship, which is sponsored by the North Carolina Technology in Education Society.

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ECU Ranked No. 2 Among Best Value Colleges for Online IT Degree

February 1, 2016 – East Carolina University has been ranked among the 10 best value colleges for an online information technology (IT) degree by College Values Online. The ranking was published on the organization’s website in January.

East Carolina University was ranked second.

Using the National Center for Education Statistics’ College Navigator database, the 10 best value colleges for an online IT degree were selected and ranked based on graduation rate and net price.

Since its inception in 1907, ECU has evolved from a teachers training school to a national research university. Today, ECU is the third largest public university in North Carolina with more than 27,500 students. The campus now includes more than 160 buildings in four

locations: the central campus, health sciences, athletics, and west research campus. The university’s academic programs are housed in ten colleges and professional schools.

“We are pleased to land on the list of best value colleges for an online IT degree,” says Chancellor Steve Ballard. “This ranking demonstrates the affordable, quality education we offer to all our students at East Carolina.”

ECU’s bachelor’s degree in Business Education with a focus in Information Technologies comprises a comprehensive curriculum that integrates liberal arts – including diverse coursework in art, economics, history, and psychology – with a strong foundation of business and technical coursework. ECU rises to the top of the online IT degree rankings with classes like Finance Information Systems; Administrative Management; and Web Site Design and Development, all of which will prepare students to meet the changing needs of businesses around the world and serve as leaders in workforce preparedness education and information technologies. Read more about the program at the following link: http://www.ecu.edu/cs-acad/ugcat/BCTE.cfm

College Values Online offers practical guidance rooted in careful research and informed by over 20 years of experience in college selection. The site delivers school and program rankings, highlights feature articles on the college experience, and provides career information, as well as a reference section. Researchers interact with multiple data sources like College Navigator, Forbes, Kiplinger, US News & World Report, and Princeton Review. Read the full article at the following link:

http://www.collegevaluesonline.com/rankings/online-it-degree/

MBHLI Literacy Leaders

Spring 2016 Margaret Blount Harvey Literacy Institute

East Carolina University’s College of Education Reading Faculty hosted the spring 2016 Margaret Blount Harvey Literacy Institute on Saturday, January 30, 2016, for pre-service and in-service teacher educators from the Latham Clinical Schools Network, a privately funded partnership program that supports the enhancement of 39 school systems in eastern North Carolina.  The Margaret Blount Harvey Institutes are possible through the generosity of Felix and Margaret Harvey, and daughters Leigh McNairy and Sunny Burrows.

Targeting the Margaret Blount Harvey Literacy Leaders Board and undergraduate students in the College of Education, this working session provided opportunities for substantial and substantive work focused on literacy and literacy development.  Two sessions were held one for the Literacy Leaders Board and one for undergraduate College of Education students.

Dr. Elizabeth Swaggerty and Dr. Anne Ticknor led the session for the Literacy Leaders Board. Dr. Christy Howard and Dr. Ran Hu helped facilitate the work which focused on the current state of literacy instruction in public schools, the issues and challenges that literacy leaders and teachers face and importantly, session offered an opportunity to share concrete strategies for addressing challenges and moving forward.

Pre-service educators review the development and progression of literacy skills and instruction needed to be successful on the Foundations of Reading test.

Pre-service educators engaged in reviewing the development and progression of literacy skills and instruction needed to be successful on the Foundations of Reading test.

The session for students led by Dr. Kim Anderson, Dr. Johna Faulconer, Dr. Caitlin Ryan with support from Ms. Jean Gore and Ms. Tanya Cannon included a solid review of the development and progression of literacy skills and instruction needed to be successful on the Foundations of Reading test required for licensure in North Carolina.  Dr. Katherine Misulis, Chair of the Department of Literacy Studies, English Education, and History Education, said “While the session for students focused on insuring a solid knowledge base in preparation for the North Carolina Foundations of Reading test, in reality, the session did so much more.  It truly helped our future teachers become more prepared to teach and reinforce literacy skills, and with today’s session, particularly those early literacy skills and strategies focusing on word recognition and identification.”

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Literacy Studies Undergraduates following their working session at the 2016 Margaret Blount Harvey Literacy Institute on Saturday, January 30.  Pictured at the top of the page: Literacy Leaders.

The next Margaret Blount Harvey Literacy Institute will be held September 24, 2016 in Greenville, NC.

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Drs. Rhodes and Schmidt receive President’s Appreciation Award from AAACE

Dr. Christy Rhodes, Assistant Professor of Adult Education, and Dr. Steve Schmidt, Associate Professor of Adult Education, were both recipients of the 2015 President’s Appreciation Award at the American Association for Adult and Continuing Education’s (AAACE) annual conference in Oklahoma City, OK, November 17-20, 2015.  The President’s Appreciation Award honors people who have exemplified outstanding contributions to the Association during the past year.  Both Drs. Rhodes and Schmidt served on the AAACE Board of Directors in 2015.

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Drs. Chambers and Ransom co-author article on “Teaching Ethics in Higher Education”

In “Teaching Ethics in Higher Education Using the Values – Issues – Action (VIA) Model,” LEED Professor Dr. Crystal Chambers, along with co-author Hellen Ransom present a model through which higher education leaders can consider the values they have and whether their actions align with those values as they deal with issues. Dr. Chambers currently teaches courses on law and ethics for students in the higher education concentration of the doctoral program in educational leadership. For the past two years, Dr. Chambers has presented on the topic of teaching ethics in higher education to new faculty through an invited session by the Council for the Advancement Higher Education Programs (CAHEP) during the Association for the Study of Higher Education’s (ASHE) annual conferences. Dr. Ransom is an associate professor of bioethics. The two met through the university’s new faculty mentorship program offered through the office for faculty excellent, where Dr. Chambers serves as a faculty mentor.

A link to the article, published by the Journal for the Advancement of Postsecondary and Tertiary Edcuation is available here http://www.informingscience.org/Publications/2336

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LEHE Faculty contribute to International Literacy Association Blog

Dr. Terry S. Atkinson, Associate Professor in the Department of Literacy Studies, English, and History Education, is a regular contributor to the International Literacy Association’s Teaching with Technology Blog.  Her most recent entry, “Inspiration and Motivation with Technology in the Midst of Constant Change” went live on January 8, 2016 and features research she conducted with LEHE colleague, Dr. Elizabeth Swaggerty.

http://www.literacyworldwide.org/blog/literacy-daily/2016/01/08/inspiration-and-motivation-with-technology-in-the-midst-of-constant-change

The International Literacy Association’s Teaching with Technology Blog is maintained by members of the Technology in Literacy Education Special Interest Group (TILE-SIG).

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LEED alumna, LaTonya Afolayan, named Associate Vice President for Advancement at Lamar University

ECU alumna LaTanya Afolayan has joined the advancement division at Lamar University as associate vice president for university advancement after a national search.

“We are very pleased to have LaTanya at Lamar University,” said Juan Zabala, vice president for university advancement. “Her fund raising and donor relations experience complements our staff well. She will be a tremendous asset to our role of making LU an ever stronger university through philanthropy.”

The 15-year career development professional comes to LU from Appalachian State University in North Carolina where she served as major gifts officer and director of development since 2011.

Previously, Afolayan served as vice chancellor of institutional advancement at North Carolina Central University from 2009 to 2010. There she managed the day-to-day operations of the alumni relations, annual fund, major gifts, and foundation and stewardship staff.

Her career also includes service as the first director of major and planned gifts at Elizabeth City State University, 2002-2005, as associate vice chancellor, 2005-2008, then vice chancellor, 2008-2009.

She began her advancement career at Emory University in Atlanta where she served as program associate, assistant director of corporate relations, 1994-1998.

Afolayan served as news director and senior producer for WPRL-FM, Alcorn State University in Lorman, Miss., 1988-1992.  She was a reporter, producer and instructor for KOMU-TB, Columbia, Mo., 1986-1987.

She holds a Ed.D., from East Carolina University, Greenville, N.C., a M.A., from the University of Missouri, Columbia, Mo., and a bachelor’s from Indiana State University, Terre Haute, Ind.

She holds certification in fundraising management and is a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals and the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education.


(January 2016). Afolayan joins LU advancement staff
, Beaumont Business Journal. Retrieved from http://beaumontbusinessjournal.com/article/higher-education/afolayan-joins-lu-advancement-staff

Montague Franklin with Jennifer Stalls

College of Education’s online graduate education programs ranked among nation’s best by U.S. News & World Report

Dr. Grant Hayes

Dr. B. Grant Hayes, dean of ECU’s College of Education

Four online graduate programs at East Carolina University have been ranked among the nation’s best by U.S. News & World Report.

ECU’s programs in business, criminal justice, education and nursing are listed in U.S. News 2016 Best Online Programs announced Jan. 12.

The College of Education’s online graduate education programs tied for 14th out of 252 schools.

“Our high ranking is a testament to the hard work and dedication of all College of Education faculty and staff,” said Dr. Grant Hayes, dean of the College of Education. “It has been a priority over the past several years to develop online master’s programs that are rigorous, appealing and accessible for education professionals who are dedicated to enriching the lives of others.”

A total of 366 students were enrolled in the following online education programs during the 2014-15 year: adult education, business education, elementary education, instructional technology, science education, reading education, special education and middle grades education.

ECU’s College of Nursing programs were ranked 23rd out of 147 schools. This fall, 316 students were enrolled in the college’s six online graduate options: adult-gerontology clinical nurse specialist, neonatal clinical nurse specialist, neonatal nurse practitioner, nursing education, nursing leadership and nurse midwifery.

“The College of Nursing has been at the forefront of online education almost since its inception,” said Dean Sylvia Brown. “It’s an important educational avenue for us to provide because it gives working nurses the ability to pursue advanced degrees while continuing to serve their communities. Better educated nurses mean better patient outcomes, and that’s key because it ties back to ECU’s mission of service.”

ECU’s online Master of Business Administration program has been recognized by U.S. News since it began ranking graduate-level business distance education programs. ECU’s MBA program tied at 72nd out of 221 schools in the country.

“We’re proud to continue leading the way as a top innovator in distance education,” said Dr. Stan Eakins, dean of the ECU College of Business. “Our strong showing in the latest U.S. News rankings reflects our commitment to academic excellence and reinforces our reputation as one of the nation’s finest institutions of higher learning.”

The online program in the College of Business has grown from a single course offering in 1998 to undergraduate and graduate degrees in various concentrations. Of the 709 total students enrolled in the ECU MBA program this fall, nearly 80 percent selected online classes. More students are enrolled in the ECU College of Business than in any other business school in the state.

ECU’s online graduate criminal justice program placed the highest in North Carolina and tied for 30th out of 51 schools ranked in the nation.

“Our ranking recognizes our commitment to educate the next generation of criminal justice leaders through excellence in graduate study,” said Dr. William Bloss, professor and chair of the ECU Department of Criminal Justice.

The recognition comes amid substantial growth in ECU’s criminal justice program, which also offers a graduate certificate in criminal justice education and two multidisciplinary graduate certificate options.

More than 50 students are pursuing an online graduate criminal justice degree, and Bloss expects an increase in enrollment this fall. “The recent growth marks over a 50 percent increase in admissions and enrollment since 2010 and provides further evidence of the demand for advanced criminal justice education among practitioners and post-baccalaureate students in the region and beyond,” Bloss said.

To develop the rankings, U.S. News & World Report evaluated areas such as student engagement, faculty credentials and training, student services and technology, admissions selectivity and peer reputation.

The complete listing can be viewed at http://www.usnews.com/online.

Jan. 12, 2016
By Crystal Baity
ECU News Services