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Graduate Education Newsletter

Fall 2017

Greetings from the Chair

Tom Shields - image

As I write this, we are grappling with the tragic and awful events that happened in Charlottesville on August 12, 2017. We are trying to understand — the incivility, the bigotry, the prejudice — that was on display and continues to grip our nation. I believe the key to restoring our democratic values of care, understanding and compassion is through our education system. To thwart the hateful beliefs — of racism, sexism, classism, homophobia, and xenophobia — we need to turn to our education system where we are able to confront these ugly behaviors and help students understand the importance of a pluralistic society.

In the coming weeks, children, young adults, and adult learners will return to classrooms with excitement and with some anxiety. It will be our job to make sure that they feel welcome, safe and secure, yet challenged to face the complexities of a diverse country. At this crucial juncture in our country’s long, embattled history with these issues, there is no greater calling than to be an educator where one is able to create a thoughtful and considerate dialogue with students. Paolo Freire, the great Latin American educational philosopher, called this the crafting of co-intentional knowledge where teacher and student have the opportunity to co-create an elevated conscientiousness of respect and trust.

Our faculty and staff in Graduate Education at the University of Richmond believe that teachers and school leaders serve as powerful role models of respect and tolerance. Over the coming academic year, we will do our best to assist our current students, graduates, and the greater community in understanding the importance of a civil and trusting culture in classrooms and schools. I believe the leadership of Kappa Delta Pi, the International Honor Society in Education, said it best in a recent letter to its membership: “As educators, we must work together and support one another to educate children who are committed to creating a better and more just society.”

In this edition of the e-newsletter, you will see how our faculty, staff, students and graduates in UR’s Graduate Education are leading the way in their classrooms, in service to the community, in research and writing, in receiving honors and accolades for their practice, and in being leaders on state educational associations. As you will notice from the accomplishments that are detailed, we believe that nothing should hold us back from making sure our students and graduates are prepared for the challenges they will face in trying to create a just and tolerant world.

As we conclude a summer filled with challenges and injustices, we should look forward to the start of another academic year as an opportunity to fulfill what Martin Luther King, Jr. said about the role of education: “The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus character — that is the goal of true education.”

Wishing you all the best with your studies and teaching this fall semester!

Tom J. Shields, Ph.D.
Graduate Education Chair

In This Issue

Scroll to read each each section.

  • Education Features
  • Upcoming Events & Deadlines
  • News & Information
  • Faculty & Staff Updates
  • Student Reminders
  • Contact Us & Connect

Previous Issues

Education Features

Upcoming Events & Deadlines

2017-18 Graduate Education Speaker Series

Details are being finalized for events in the 2017-2018 Graduate Education Speaker Series. Mark your calendar and look for additional details for the following events.

Overview and Explanation of Every Child Succeeds Act (ESSA): September 7 at 4:30 p.m.

Dr. Lynn Sodat, Director of the Office of Program Administration and Accountability at the Virginia Department of Education, will give an overview and explanation of the Act. Thursday, September 7, 4:30 p.m., International Commons, Carole Weinstein International Center.

Henry Cole Book Talk and Signing: October 11 at 5 p.m.

Children’s author, illustrator, and Virginia native Henry Cole will give a presentation of his work on Wednesday, October 11 at 5:30 p.m., Alice Haynes Room, Tyler Haynes Commons. A book signing and reception will follow.​

Is Our Education System Prepared to Assist Immigrant Students? November 2, 6 p.m.

Panel representing a linguistic academic expert, local school division, state DOE, parent, and community advocate on Thursday, November 2, at 6 p.m., International Commons, Carole Weinstein International Center. Additional details TBA.

Awareness and Recognition of Trauma and Violence in Social Media: April 19, 6 p.m.

Panel representing a bullying academic expert, school representative, community advocate, parent and/or student on Thursday, April 19, 2018, 6 p.m., International Commons, Carole Weinstein International Center. Additional details TBA.

Book Talk with author Richard Rothstein: Spring 2018, Date TBA

Author Richard Rothstein will talk about his book The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America.

News & Information

View more related articles

Faculty & Staff Updates

  • Edinger published in Journal of Psychology

    Adjunct professor of education Dr. Matthew Edinger recently published an article with Suzanne Edinger titled Improving Teacher Job Satisfaction: The Roles of Social Capital, Teacher Efficacy, and Support in the Journal of Psychology.

  • Spires serves on Inequality & Human Trafficking panel

    Assistant professor of education Bob Spires served on a panel on Inequality & Human Trafficking at the Annual Atlanta Global Studies Symposium at Georgia Tech University on April 26. Panelists from North America, West Africa & Asia examined causes, consequences & solutions to address global human trafficking.

  • Spires presents on rural Cambodian border youth

    Assistant professor of education Bob Spires presented An Exploratory Case Study on Rural Cambodian Border Youth: Social & Educational Barriers with Implications for Development with a colleague from Colorado Mesa U at Education for Sustainability: CIES 2019, April 14-18.

  • Milby quoted in Scholastic Raise a Reader blog

    Director of reading in the education department Tammy Milby is quoted throughout the Scholastic blog article 7 Important Questions to Ask Your Child During Story Time that encourages parents to “amplify the benefits” of story time as they read with their children.

  • Myers hired at Va. Dept. of Education

    Adjunct assistant professor of education Dave Myers has been named assistant superintendent of data for the Virginia Department of Education. He is stepping down from his position as superintendent of New Kent County Schools effective April 24, 2019.

  • Bryant mentioned in Richmond Magazine

    Nora Bryant, Adjunct Instructor of Education, is mentioned in an article titled A Family-Friendly Outfit in Richmond Magazine. Bryant co-owns Little Nomad, a children’s clothing shop, with her husband, Anthony. She teaches courses related to special education.

  • Hanel hired as accreditation specialist

    Dr. Joel Hanel has been hired as Accreditation & Assessment Specialist in SPCS. Hanel coordinates school-wide accreditation and assessment efforts. He comes to Richmond from Radford University.

  • Calveric named Caroline County Schools Superintendent

    SPCS adjunct associate professor of education Dr. Sarah B. Calveric has been named Superintendent of Caroline County Public Schools (CCPS) effective December 10, 2018.

  • Cassada named CLE director

    SPCS professor of education Kate Cassada, assistant chair of the Educational Leadership & Policy Studies program, has been named director of the Center for Leadership in Education (CLE), following former director Tom Shields’ appointment as SPCS associate dean.

  • Jackson named coordinator of leadership academy

    Dr. Dana Jackson has been named part-time coordinator of the Next Generation Leadership Academy (NGLA), a school leader training program of the University’s Center for Leadership in Education.

Student Reminders

Fall Academic Schedule

Fall courses begin the week of August 28th. Please visit the Academic Calendar via the Registrar’s Office webpage for important fall semester dates and deadlines.

Comprehensive Exams

Fall Comprehensive Exams will take place in November. Eligible students will be contacted with further details by their respective program in early fall.

Commencement and Graduation Reminders

The online degree application is now available for all students intending to graduate in May or August 2018 (or also December 2017 for SPCS students). This application may be found on BannerWeb under Student Services and must be submitted by Friday, October 27. Students should contact the Registrar's Office with any questions about the degree application process.

Scholarship Deadline for Spring

The deadline for scholarship applications is November 1, 2017, for the Spring 2018 semester. Visit the Scholarships page for details.

Free VASCD Memberships for First-Year Teachers

VASCD is offering a free annual membership​ to any new teacher in Virginia. Visit for organization information, and download the membership offer flyer.

Photos from Spring & Summer 2017 Education Events
End-of-Year Education Celebration: Dr. Tom Shields, Chair, and Dr. Jamelle Wilson, Dean, address attendees.
End-of-Year Education Celebration: Faculty, staff and students join the festivities.
End-of-Year Education Celebration: Attendees gathered around Dr. Shields and Dr. Wilson.

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University of Richmond, Va. 23173

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