Spring 2017

Greetings from the Chair

Tom Shields headshot As educators, we work to impact our students, but sometimes we don’t know until months or even years later the extent of that impact. It is a highlight of our profession to receive an email, note, or to bump into former students and hear what they learned in our classes, how much they have achieved in their positions, or where they are in their life’s journey. Staying connected with students is truly one of the greatest rewards of our profession — a gift that keeps on giving. One thing is for sure, Graduate Education faculty and staff love to hear about our students’ successes — big and small!

In this edition of the Graduate Education e-newsletter, we celebrate some of the incredible successes of our students. You will learn about a current student recently awarded “Teacher of the Year” by her school division, others who have won major regional awards for their instruction, and some who are writing blogs, op-eds, and articles on cutting edge topics in education. And this is just a small sample of the accolades that are being received by our tremendously skilled current and former students. So, please continue to inform us of the successes and celebrations that are happening in your lives — we love to hear from you!

We also realize that an academic community shouldn’t stop at the classroom door. In response, we seek opportunities to create conversations with our students, graduates, and practitioners on topics that are important to K-12 education and to raise awareness regarding the quality of our graduate programs. We started this in the fall semester when we sponsored a book talk by Dr. Genevieve Siegel-Hawley on K-12 school segregation in the Richmond area. This talk was well-received with over 100 people in attendance.

Building on the success of that fall event, Graduate Education set out to develop a spring speaker series focused on critical K-12 topics. These events range from a book talk by an award-winning children’s author and illustrator, a discussion on the Commonwealth’s need for quality education in a changing economy, and a film screening and related panel discussion on trauma and resiliency practices in schools.

As you will read, there is a lot going on in Graduate Education this spring semester. We hope to see you at a spring event, look forward to celebrating with you at the end of the semester (keep reading for details on our annual Graduate Education party!), and wish you each a fantastic spring semester.

Be safe and be well!

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