Atkinson honored with Advocacy Award from United Way

Dr. Terry Atkinson accepts the 2018 Advocacy Award from United Way of Pitt County.

Dr. Terry Atkinson accepts the 2018 Advocacy Award from United Way of Pitt County.

Dr. Terry Atkinson, East Carolina University College of Education associate professor,  was honored with the 2018 Advocacy Award from the United Way of Pitt County. Atkinson, who serves as an associate professor of literacy studies, English education, history education, and reading education, received this award for her key role in fostering the development of the Literacy Coalition, the programs it has implemented, and all her efforts on behalf of early literacy in the Pitt County community.

Drs. Atkinson, Kim Anderson, and Elizabeth Swaggerty are conducting a robust and extensive 5-year research study, with support from ECU Academic Affairs, on the impact of the early literacy initiatives implemented by the Literacy Coalition and the United Way of Pitt County. This work has included a strong partnership with Pitt County Schools.

“Terry’s commitment to the Early Literacy Coalition and the Imagination Library make her a most appropriate recipient of this year’s Advocate Excellence award,” said Jim Cieslar, Executive Director of the United Way of Pitt County. “Her team’s assessment of the impact of [Imagination Library] is a critical component of the Early Literacy Coalition’s efforts to ensure that all children enter school ready to learn.”

Atkinson has been instrumental, with support and efforts from  Swaggerty and Anderson, in building the program and its structure. This program is now being studied to determine its effectiveness and areas in need of improvement or elaboration to result in significant outcomes in early literacy for the young children and families in Pitt County, particularly for those who are most vulnerable.
Greenville Daily Reflector: “ECU researchers measuring impact of childhood literacy effort”