News

UCA Hosts DREAMzone Ally Training

UCA CSPA - IMG_8374On Friday, April 21st, the University of Central Arkansas (UCA) hosted its first DREAMzone ally training for students, staff, and faculty. The training was facilitated by undocumented student members of Phi Iota Alpha Inc. and Fuerza e Integridad a Todos (FIAT), two student organizations at UCA that prioritize Latinx student leadership and empowerment.

Co-founded by Dr. Jesus Cisneros, assistant professor of College Student Personnel Services and Administration (CSPA), DREAMzone is a professional development training designed to provide students, staff, and faculty with awareness, knowledge, and skills for working with undocumented students. DREAMzone was created in an effort to acknowledge and address the unique challenges encountered by undocumented students in higher education and increase their educational attainment. DREAMzone seeks to reduce stigma and discrimination toward undocumented immigrants by promoting more culturally sensitive practices for responding to the presence and needs of undocumented students on campus.

In 2013, DREAMzone was recognized by the Clinton Global Initiative University for its innovative approach to addressing global challenges and societal needs. Since 2012, DREAMzone has been implemented at several institutions of higher education, including Arizona State University, Northern Arizona University, University of Nevada at Las Vegas, Nevada State College, College of Southern Nevada, New Mexico State University, Colorado State University at Fort Collins, Harvard University, and most recently the University of Central Arkansas.

Interested in attending or hosting a training? Visit the DREAMzone website!

2017-2018 Gladys Sachse Scholarship Award Winners Announced

Chelsea Treadway and Melissa Bullard are this year’s winners of the Gladys Sachse Endowed Scholarships. Chelsea and Melissa are each awarded a $1,000 scholarship to support their studies in the Graduate Library Media Program for the 2017-2018 academic year. Congratulations to Chelsea and Melisa!

treadwayChelsea Treadway is currently a science teacher at Annie Camp Junior high in Jonesboro.  She plans to graduate from UCA’s Library Media program in August 2017.  Once she graduates and is in a school library media center, she plans to implement several concepts that she learned from the program.

In particular, she plans to,

  • Attend grade and subject level meetings to better understand what resources teachers need within the school
  • Design makerspaces that intrigue students and promote the library
  • Write grants that allow the library to become more technology-centered
  • Redesign the library when needed to meet the 21st century learner’s needs
  • Offer activities during and after school hours that promotes the school library

Chelsea states: “The library media program opened my eyes to the potential of a school library far beyond the tasks of checking out books.  I hope to someday run a library that engages all students, meets the needs of all teachers, and sets the standard for the 21st century library media center.”

bullardMelissa Bullard works for the Blytheville Public Schools.  This is her 20th year in the district.  Nineteen of those years have been dedicated to being a First Grade teacher.  This year is her first year as the Kindergarten Library Media Specialist.  She is currently seeking a Master’s degree in Library Media and Information Technologies from UCA.  She plans on graduating in the Spring of 2018.

Her initial plans are to:

  • create an atmosphere in the library that makes children and staff  want to come and visit.
  • create an online web page for her library showcasing all they have to offer, including  a link for  online access to their collection.
  • educate students, parents  and staff on how they can access the library 24/7.
  • collaborate with teachers, students & administration in order to improve test scores.
  • help struggling readers to succeed by creating literacy chat groups.

Her future plans are to:

  • add additional maker space projects.
  • strengthen and update all collections with staff and student input.
  • update technology and help staff design lessons using technology.

CSPA Student Wins Bob Huss Outstanding Graduate Student Award

Susan Barclay - Bob Huss_CresswellBriana Cresswell, a student in the College Student Personnel Services and Administration (CSPA) master’s program, won the Bob Huss Outstanding Graduate Student award recently. The Southwest Association of College & University Housing Officers (SWACUHO) presents this award annually to four students who are working, or plan to work, in the student services area, especially within university housing or residence life. Two awards go to students in Texas; one award goes to a student in Oklahoma; and one award goes to a student in Arkansas.

SWACUHO has been presenting the Bob Huss Outstanding Graduate Student award for 27 years. In that time, 14 CSPA graduate students have won the recognition, including every year for the past four years.

Congratulations, Briana!

Kappa Delta Pi Fall 2016 Awards

Alek Oseguera was chosen as the Intern of the Semester. Trena Jones, his mentor at Greenbrier Middle School, and his UCA Supervisor, Mara Cawein, nominated him for many reasons, not the least of which is his ability to engage his students with such energy and passion that it is contagious. Alek’s mentor stated, “Alek has impressed me in so many aspects of his Internship, but the most outstanding quality that he displayed is his ability to make everyone feel special around him. … Not only do I feel UCA sent me a thoughtful young man but they also sent me one of their best.”

Mara Cawein - KDPinternfall16

Alek Oseguera (right), KDP Intern of the Semester, with KDP Counselor, Mara Cawein

Danielle Creswell of Ellen Smith Elementary School received the Mentor of the Semester Award. Bethany Allen nominated her and shared, “My future students should thank her, because my ability to manage student behavior in the classroom has drastically improved. … A teacher never stops learning or improving their ability to teach children. Mrs. Creswell is committed to improving the future of education.”

KDP Mentor of the Semester, Danielle Creswell, with intern Bethany Allen

KDP Mentor of the Semester, Danielle Creswell, with intern Bethany Allen

The Kappa Delta Pi 2016 Fall Awards were given to recipients at the final internship meeting at the University of Central Arkansas on Friday, December 2, 2016. Kappa Delta Pi is an international honor society for educators. The mission of the Pi Beta Chapter at the University of Central Arkansas is to honor the achievements of educators and promote excellence in education. The awards committee was pleased to select Alek Oseguera, UCA intern, and Danielle Creswell, mentor at Ellen Smith Elementary, for the Fall 2016 awards. For more information about the Pi Beta Chapter of Kappa Delta Pi, contact Ms. Mara Cawein at marac@uca.edu or Dr. Nancy P. Gallavan at ngallavan@uca.edu .

ELSE Student Awarded Kappa Delta Pi Chapter Grant

Mara Cawein - AdrianneAdrianne McCraw received a grant from Kappa Delta Pi (KDP) headquarters in the amount of $250 at the August 25th chapter meeting. In addition to being the KDP president at UCA, Adrianne is a member of Teachers of Tomorrow (TOT), served as secretary of Alpha Chi, served on the state student board for the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC), and has been an active member of the Boy Scouts of America. She presented a paper at the National Alpha Chi Conference in Washington, D.C. and plans to present with KDP members at the Arkansas Curriculum Conference in November. She manages to do all of this and still maintain a 4.0 gpa at UCA.

Kappa Delta Pi is an international honor society for educators and provides foundation services for the Pi Beta Chapter Grant through its headquarters in Indianapolis, Indiana. Congratulations Adrianne!

STEMulate Engineering Academy Held June 7-10

STEMulate Engineering Academy was held at UCA’s College of Education from June 7-10. There were 65 (Grades 3-5) campers in attendance. The campers solved problems using the engineering design process and used digital design with 3D printing to create prototypes of products used to solve the problems. Instructors for the camp were students in the Gifted and Talented program: Jenna Spikes, Lindsey Ashcraft, Amber Peck, Tristen Dixon, Elizabeth Corey, and Lauren Kovach. Helpers in the camp included: Alex Moore, Chloe Cotabish, and Allen Nguyen. Drs. Debbie Dailey, Alicia Cotabish, and Jason Trumble, faculty in the Department of Teaching and Learning, directed the camp.

Dr. Trumble was instrumental in bringing digital design to the camp. Dr. Nykela Jackson assisted the camp instructors in writing the curriculum and helped in the camp logistics. The camp is partially funded by Kimberly Clark Corporation. Throughout the week, Kimberly Clark engineers (13 in total) provided opening presentations to the students on what it is like to be an engineer. The engineers included: Coral Abreu, Tom Buchanan, Bryan Cosnahan, Dennis Cotabish, Taylor Dewitt, Bill Nelson, Amy Neumeier, Hitesh Patel, Michael Ray, Jonathan Stewart, Kyle Wurdack, and Chris Bourdrie (Plant Manager).

STEMulate Academy

UCA Programs Receive International Dyslexia Association Accreditation

BALTIMORE, May 25, 2016 – The International Dyslexia Association (IDA) announced today that nine university programs in the U.S. have received accreditation from IDA and its affiliate, the Center for Effective Reading Instruction (CERI), for having met the standards outlined in IDA’s Knowledge and Practice Standards for Teachers of Reading. This was the third round of university reviews by IDA, which conducts the process every two years.

The IDA Standards provide a framework for course content in university and other teacher preparation programs, offering the most thorough, research-supported documentation of what every teacher ought to know and be able to demonstrate, whether they are teaching dyslexic students, other struggling readers or the general student population.

The programs IDA has accredited in 2016 are as follows:
  • Clarion University, Pennsylvania
    • M.S. Special Education with Reading Concentration
  • Columbia University, New York
    • M.A. Reading Specialist
  • Drexel University, Pennsylvania
    • M.S. Special Education with Multisensory Reading Concentration
  • Fairfield University, Connecticut
    • Certificate of Advanced Study (6th year), Reading and Language Development
  • Ohio State University, Ohio
    • Dyslexia Certificate Track
  • Southern Connecticut State University, Connecticut
    • M.S. in Reading
  • University of Central Arkansas, Arkansas
    • B.S.E. Elementary Education, M.S.E. Reading
  • University of Southern Mississippi, Mississippi
    • Ed. in Dyslexia Therapy
  • West Liberty University, West Virginia
    • M.A. in Education, Reading Endorsement

“We are delighted to see this third group of teacher preparation programs meet the rigorous requirements for IDA accreditation, as well as to see increasing numbers of programs demonstrating an interest in seeking IDA accreditation,” said Louise Spear-Swerling, Ph.D., Vice President of the CERI Board of Directors and Area Coordinator for the Graduate Program in Learning Disabilities at Southern Connecticut State University. “Effective teachers can make an enormous difference in children’s literacy outcomes.”

“These programs are providing the kind of thorough, evidence-based preparation that is needed for educators to teach reading and writing very successfully to diverse groups of students, including those with dyslexia and other reading difficulties,” said Spear-Swerling.

IDA began reviewing university reading programs in 2012, resulting in the accreditation of nine programs that year, followed by eight more in 2014. A complete list of accredited programs can be found on IDA’s website at www.eida.org.

For the 2016 group, three independent reviewers were assigned to each university to evaluate their programs and alignment with IDA Standards. The review included a thorough look at course syllabi and other course materials and requirements, interviews with program directors, and a site visit to the school.

The IDA Standards emphasize the need for teachers to be more deeply prepared in the structure of language, including the speech sound system, the writing system, the structure of sentences, the meaningful parts of words, meaning relationships among words and their referents, and the organization of spoken and written discourse.

The long-term goal of the Standards initiative is to promote consistent and high-quality teacher preparation that will improve the educational outcomes for all students, especially those who struggle with written language.

IDA’s Center for Effective Reading Instruction (CERI) also offers individual certification for teachers based on the IDAKnowledge and Practice Standards for Teachers of Reading. These include Structured Literacy Teacher and Structured Literacy Interventionist certifications.

“Our goal is to make sure teachers are better prepared to teach reading in our schools so that all students acquire the highest levels of literacy and thrive,” said Liz Liptak

Executive Director of CERI. “We believe that everyone can reach their full potential when they receive the right instruction and support.”

About the International Dyslexia Association

The International Dyslexia Association is a non-profit, scientific, and educational organization dedicated to the study and treatment of dyslexia as well as related language-based learning differences. The IDA operates 43 branches throughout the United States and Canada and has global partners in 20 countries, including Australia, Brazil, England, Germany, Ireland, and Japan. For additional information please visitwww.eida.org.

About The Center for Effective Reading Instruction

The Center for Effective Reading Instruction (CERI) seeks to further evidence-based approaches to reading and learning so that all students acquire the highest levels of literacy and thrive. CERI fulfills its mission by offering certification to teachers and reading interventionists that affirms their knowledge and skills in teaching literacy using a structured approach to language. CERI also accredits university and independent training programs that provide teacher preparation in structured literacy and language. CERI operates as an independent subsidiary of the International Dyslexia Association. For additional information please visit https://effectivereading.org.

For media inquiries, please contact Lisa Harlow of Clapp Communications at (410) 561-8886 or atlisa@clappcommunications.com

Nancy P. Gallavan Honored as 2016 Distinguished Member of ATE

ngallavanNancy P. Gallavan, PhD, was honored as the 2016 Distinguished Member of the Association of Teacher Educators (ATE) at the annual meeting held in Chicago.

Nancy has been a member of ATE for 21 years serving as ATE President 2013-14, co-chair of the 2011 and 2017 annual meetings, and chairs of the Commission on Teacher Self-Efficacy and the Commission on Online Teaching, Learning, and Schooling. Additionally, Nancy serves as the co-editor of the ATE Yearbook of Research for 2013-2018.

2016-17 Gladys Sachse Scholarship Winners

The College of Education is very pleased to announce that Cherry Cantrell and Kimberly Scott are the winners of the Gladys Sachse Endowed Scholarships. Cherry and Kimberly are each awarded a $1,000 scholarship for the 2016-2017 academic year. Congratulations to Cherry and Kimberly!

Cherry Cantrell

Cherry Cantrell

Cherry Cantrell currently teaches secondary English at Bald Knob High School.  This year she has all the Grade 10 students for English and one group of advanced Grade 9 students.  Cherry also teaches oral communications.  She has a Master’s Degree in English and hopes to finish her Master’s in the Library Media program in the summer of 2017.  Cherry envisions a secondary library with a makerspace, a technology center, and a café of sorts.

Specifically, she would like to collaborate with classroom teachers and invite students into the library to reenact portions of history, a book, a poem, or a drama; the students would create costumes in the makerspace: to put the narrator of Poe’s stories on trial; to connect animal outfits to government philosophies through a study enrichment on Animal Farm; to become the characters in To Kill a Mockingbird and act out an alternate ending; or to portray the founding fathers at a meeting at Mt. Vernon.  By creating a fun and interesting atmosphere and incorporating social media and gaming, Cherry desires to build a program where both teachers and students can bond and learn.

Kim Scott

Kim Scott

Kim Scott has been working as teacher in the Conway Public School district for twenty four years.  She has taught second and fourth grades which has exposed her to various levels of children’s books from her favorite picture book, My Many Colored Days to The Invention of Hugo Cabret.  She plans on graduating with a degree in Library media science in August of 2018.

Once she graduates she plans on:

  • Having a library that is a fun, collaborative and all- inclusive workspace
  • Providing  Ebooks and audiobooks for student use at home and school
  • Changing the view of the library from being a solitary workspace to a collaborative          environment
  • Instituting a writing / illustrating club that would create a graphic novel
  • Adding more culturally diverse books to the library

Kappa Delta Pi Initation

UCA’s education honor society, Kappa Delta Pi, initiated a record number of students this spring. There were 46 undergraduate education majors and MAT graduate students who met the requirements this semester.

KPD 2016

The initiation ceremony took place on March 17, 2016 in Mashburn Hall. The Society inducts only those individuals who have exhibited the ideals of scholarship, integrity in service, and commitment to excellence in teaching and its allied professions. Selection as a member of Kappa Delta Pi is based on high academic achievement, a commitment to education as a career, and a professional attitude that assures steady growth in the profession. At UCA, members must be committed to the education profession and have a GPA that reflects their commitment.

Founded in 1911 at the University of Illinois, Kappa Delta Pi is the largest honor society in education, representing 582 undergraduate and professional chapters and more than 45,000 active members. Its most distinguished members over the last century have included Margaret Mead, Albert Einstein, George Washington Carver, and current leaders in education Howard Gardner, Maxine Greene, and Carol Gilligan.