On January 14th, MCE held Colorado’s first and only public screening of the documentary “TEACH”. Over 200 educators and community leaders participated in the event which concluded with a panel discussion hosted by MCE Faculty member Paul Michalec, PhD, Program Coordinator and Clinical Professor for the Curriculum Studies and Teaching program.

Four of the Denver teachers and building leaders featured in the film were invited to be part of the panel, including Matt Johnson, MCE alum from the Denver Teacher Residency Program. During the discussion, Michalec quoted a stunning statistic that over 50 percent of new teachers will leave the education field within five years of beginning their careers. Why would teachers continue to teach despite an overwhelming number of obstacles stacked against them? Johnson, teacher at McGlone Elementary, explained that the students are his reason for continuing, a sentiment echoed by others. Lyndsay Young, teacher at MLK Early College, expressed that many students have never known a high school graduate and need a constant driving force in order to succeed. She saw herself as that force.

Carrie Morgridge, of the Morgridge Family Foundation, asked the panel, “What can [we]…do to help improve the system for you?” The panel’s overwhelming response was that teachers could be better prepared for these struggles if colleges of education provided more opportunities for their students to gain hands-on experience. “We need more forums between professors, teachers, and working practitioners,” said Suzanne Morey, Principal at McGlone Elementary School.

The event was featured in the DU Clarion. MCE will continue to drive critical conversations about teaching and teachers. Stay tuned for more events and opportunities to engage.

2014 was an eventful year for the Morgridge College of Education. From the introduction of new leaders to exciting student opportunities; we are excited to share with you some of our favorite moments of 2014.

Morgridge College of Education faculty member, Dr. Douglas Clements, sat down with NPR Morning Edition to discuss Why Math Might be the Secret to School Success. Across the country, enhancing the education of young children has been a major area of focus from academia to politics. This podcast focuses on Building Blocks, a math curriculum developed by Dr. Clements and Dr. Julie Sarama.Currently, in New York City, a $25 million study is collecting evidence on ways to effectively raise educational outcomes for children in poverty. Building Blocks is one math curriculum being tested in the study. Dr. Clements and Dr. Sarama believe that math may be key to increasing educational outcomes.

The NPR Morning Edition podcast was released a day prior to the December 10, 2014, White House Summit on Early Childhood Education. Morgridge faculty are at the forefront of the conversation of early childhood learning. Their work is pushing the envelope on how teachers engage and promote educational outcomes for future generations.

The Morgridge College of Education, Educational Leadership and Policy Studies (ELPS) program at the University of Denver is launching a unique partnership with Teach For America – Colorado.  One of an elite few hybrid programs Executive Leadership for Successful Schools (ELSS) brings together graduate school faculty, local principals and educational organizations.  The focus of this collaboration is to infuse Colorado with transformational leaders from across the country. A highly sought after placement, top Teach For America alumna will be selected from a competitive pool of applicants to participate in the TFA ELSS cohort of the Educational Leadership and Policy Studies program at the Morgridge College of Education.  Students will collaborate with exceptional faculty as they prepare to become courageous, visionary and transformative school leaders.  In an innovative hybrid teaching environment, students will work online throughout much of the program, but will have the opportunity, via Colorado Teach For America funding, to travel to Denver multiple times over the course of the program.  Once in Denver, students will visit schools in Denver Public Schools and shadow principals on Friday and attend full-day workshops with local aspiring school leaders at the Morgridge College of Education.

The exciting partnership blends the goals of Teach For America – Colorado to be a catalyst to help create transformational classrooms and schools for all kids with the Morgridge College of Education’s tradition of providing purposeful in-context learning experiences that help to transform people, communities and the world.  The Educational Leadership and Policy Studies (ELPS) program has been awarded the 2014 UCEA Exemplary Educational Leadership Preparation Program Award by the University Council for Educational Administration (UCEA). This award showcases institutions that benefit children and schools through advancing the preparation and practice of educational leaders.  The ELPS – Teach For America – Colorado partnership is another example of the many ways in which the Morgridge College of Education is an innovative leader working to transform people, communities and the world.

It is every child’s right to have a transformational leader in every school and every classroom — this video will show you what happens when transformational leaders create strong cultures in their schools, and the lasting impact these people have on our students.

This video tells this story through the lens of Educational Leadership & Policy Studies Graduate & DPS Principal, Nick Dawkins, who was recognized for excellence by the DPS Foundation.

Developing and Evaluating Tests that Measure & Track Cognitive Functioning

Karen Riley - Desk

Dr. Karen Riley

Multi-site project validates existing tests that track improved thinking and problem-solving skills in people with fragile X syndrome, Down syndrome, and other intellectual disabilities.

Researchers with The Morgridge College of Education at The University of Denver are partners in a multi-site project that validates existing tests designed to measure and track changes in the cognitive functioning of people who are typically difficult to assess accurately. The research is funded through a, five-year, $3.2 million grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Principal investigators, Karen Riley Ph.D., Dean and Associate Professor, The Morgridge College of Education; Elizabeth Berry-Kravis Ph.D. M.D., Associate professor,  Rush University Medical Center, Chicago; David Hessl Ph.D., Professor, UC Davis Mind Institute; and Richard Gershon Ph.D., Associate Professor, Northwestern University School of Medicine participate in this ground breaking research.

“The importance of appropriate outcome measures is foundational for intervention research. This project provides an opportunity for The University of Denver to collaborate with national leaders in the field and to partner with researchers at The Children’s Hospital, including Dr. Nicole Tartaglia in the Child Development Center and Dr. Fran Hickey in the Anna and John J Sie Center for Children with Down syndrome. It also provides a unique research opportunity for our students and builds capacity within our community to support children and their families with neurodevelopmental disorders,” said Dean Riley.

The tests will eventually be used to ascertain the effectiveness of medications and other treatments, specifically for people with fragile X syndrome and Down syndrome and other intellectual disabilities. Fragile X syndrome and Down syndrome are among the leading causes of intellectual disabilites in the United States and around the world. Fragile X syndrome also is the leading single-gene cause of autism spectrum disorder.

Research Partners

National Institute of Health Grant

Often new teachers enter their career excited and full of energy, but rapidly begin to feel like something is missing. Too quickly they feel like leaving.

Is this you? Someone you know?

Paul Michalec

Dr. Paul Michalec.

Early Career Teachers: Sustaining the Fire is an opportunity to join a community of other early career teachers to share stories, develop skills and provide support during this critical time of professional identity formation. The early years of teaching often follow a yearly pattern that starts with excitement in the fall and bottoms out in December with disillusionment followed by anticipation in the late spring. Most schools and school districts lack the capacity for helping teachers work through the learning associated with disillusionment and loss of heart. Consequently, many teachers exit the field of education before they have three years of experience. Under the guidance of Dr. Paul Michalec, you will learn both the latest research in the experiences of early career teachers, strategies and techniques for responding to the challenges, and a community of fellow practitioners sharing stories of early career experiences.

Sessions will be held the first Wednesday of each month, beginning December 3, 2014 from 6:30- 8:00 PM The session will be held in Ruffatto Hall, Boardroom (off the main lobby), 1999 E. Evans Avenue, Denver CO 80208 and will cost $150, with students and multiparty sign ups receiving a discounted price of $75.

We hope you will join us and continue your professional learning, transforming passion into purpose.

Renew your Teaching –

From: Gregg Kvistad, Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor

It is with great pleasure that I share the news that Dr. Karen Riley has been named dean of the Morgridge College of Education. Chancellor Emeritus Robert Coombe and I launched the search for the permanent dean of the College in late spring. A search committee was formed and very ably led by Dr. Shelly Smith-Acuna, dean of the Graduate School of Professional Psychology. After meeting with the committee last week, the position was offered to Karen, and she enthusiastically accepted.

As many of you know, Karen served as interim dean of the College for the last year. She is an associate professor with tenure, in the area of Child, Family, and School Psychology. From 2011 until 2013, she was the department chair of the Educational Research Policy and Practice program. Between 2010 and 2012, Karen put her leadership skills to work as faculty director of the Fisher Early Learning Center at the University. Karen joined the University as an assistant professor in 2004. She received her master’s degree from DU in 1986 in early childhood special education, and her Ph.D. in 1998 in child and family studies.

Between 1986 and 1997, Karen served as an education practitioner, working as an early childhood specialist and special education preschool coordinator for Adams County School District #12. After completing her Ph.D., Karen shifted gears and embarked on a very productive research career that has won her international acclaim. Working on Fragile X Syndrome, Karen has been funded by the National Institute of Health, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the U.S. Department of Education, Novartis Pharmaceutical, the Colorado Department of Education, and other agencies and foundations.

In short, Karen Riley has excellent credentials and an impressive track-record of teaching and research distinction as well as academic leadership. Her candidacy received extraordinarily strong support from her colleagues at the College, other faculty members across the institution, and the many University administrators with whom a dean interacts at the University.

Please join me in warmly welcoming Dr. Karen Riley to the position of dean of the Morgridge College of Education.

Share Fair Nation (SFN) is a Morgridge Family Foundation (MFF) sponsored event that provides PreK-12 educators the opportunity to join the conversation around inspired teaching and learning, to collaborate and share best practices, to discover emergent strategies and technologies, and to see firsthand valuable and innovative approaches to delivering 21st Century learning.

The Share Fair Nation is made up of educators, administrators, parents, community leaders and others with an interest in transforming education beyond the 21st Century and it is coming to the Morgridge College of Education September 27, 2014.

If you missed the Deposited student webinars for Fall start programs and for TEP please feel free to review them at the links provided below.

 

Deposited student webinar for all Fall-start programs: https://connect.du.edu/p1t80gl4n8e/

Deposited student webinar for TEP: https://connect.du.edu/p19deeyo5g0/

A morning advocating for additional support for children with autism, to an evening dinner networking with some of the great thinkers in the field of School Psychology. This was a day in the life of Brittany Sovran and Jessica S. Reinhardt at the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) Annual Convention.  The highlight, however, was the two students’ attendance at the Woodcock-Muñoz Foundation’s Dinner. For the first time in the history of the Woodcock-Muñoz Foundation’s Dinner event at the NASP Annual Convention, students were nominated by faculty to attend.

The Woodcock-Muñoz Foundation (WMF) is a private, nonprofit, operating foundation that supports the advancement of contemporary cognitive assessment. The WMF engages in programs of instructional support to professional preparation programs, research concerning the abilities of individuals with diagnosed exceptionalities, and closely-related educational and research projects and applications.

Child, Family and School Psychology faculty members, Dr. Karen Dittrick-Nathan and Dr. Cynthia Hazel, who were invited to the dinner event, nominated Brittany Sovran and Jessica Reinhardt for the honor of attendance. The two University of Denver students were then selected by the event’s planning committee to attend.

Both Jessica and Brittany took the conference as an opportunity to network and advocate for their agenda.  Earlier in the conference they visited Colorado Senator Mark Udall (D) to advocate for additional funding for mental health in school. Jessica shared that the event, “was a great opportunity to meet a variety of professionals in the field, including faculty from other universities, and those highly regarded in the area of test development.” Both students stressed that the opportunity to form relationships with potential mentors from other institutions, could prove beneficial for learning additional techniques for educating and training school psychologists.

Jessica emphasized that it is life changing to meet the frontrunners in test development at various moments of the conference. “This event [WMF dinner], specifically at this conference inspired me to pursue a career in academia.” Jessica describes herself as both an academic and practitioner, and although she wants to continue working at the grassroots level, her appreciation for having a more systemic impact by training school psychologists is even greater. She shares that “in the future, I can now see myself in a faculty position at a university, where having a greater impact is possible.”

The Faculty in the Child, Family and School Psychology Program encouraged all Morgridge College of Education students attending the conference to speak with legislators who can influence change on a variety of issues affecting child, family, and school psychologists in Colorado. The CFSP program provides students the foundation to not only be Change Agents and advocates in the field but also highly competent, collaborative, ethical and self-reflective scientist-practitioners.  To learn more about the program and the Morgridge College of Education, visit www.du.edu/education.

According to the National Math + Science Initiative, about 44% of high school graduates are ready for success in college math and 36% are ready for college-level science. Students progressing through at least Algebra II in high school are twice as likely to complete a four-year degree when compared to those who do not progress through Algebra II. There is an increasing need for math educators who are innovative and creative leaders in the classroom and in the field of math education.

To address this need for innovative math educators, beginning in Fall 2014, the Curriculum Studies and Teaching program at the University of Denver will begin offering courses in the new math education concentration area in Curriculum & Instruction (C&I). Students completing this concentration will develop their leadership skills through a deep understanding of the role of diversity, social justice, access, and equity in math. Additionally, students will be able to demonstrate comprehension of mathematical content, the application and synthesis of theories in research-based settings, and the application of technology and project-based learning. Students will have a chance to explore and evaluate the historical research foundation of math education and the impact on current practices in the field. Moreover, through coursework, field experiences, and initial research experiences, students in the math education concentration in the Curriculum & Instruction degree program will develop a strong background in cognition and math learning stylesmath. The program will produce math educators who have a strong theoretical background in math education and who are well prepared to address relevant and pertinent local, national and international questions in math education.

The new course offerings in the math education concentration math include the history and philosophy of math, learning and teaching math, early childhood math, diversity and equity in math, foundations of learning, technology in math education, discourse in math, and elementary math.  This concentration is being offered in the masters and doctoral degree programs, both EdD and PhD, in Curriculum and Instruction.

Upon completion of this concentration, students will be prepared for roles as leaders in math education in a variety of sectors such as higher education, state agencies, and non-profits. Students will be equipped to be positive change agents ready to identify and solve relevant national and international issues in math education, particularly for underrepresented student groups.

For more information, contact (303) 871-2509 (toll free at 1-800-835-1607) or email mce@du.edu.—

The STEM Crisis

https://nms.org/Education/TheSTEMCrisis.aspx

Increasing the Achievement and Presence of Under-Represented Minorities in STEM Fields

https://nms.org/Portals/0/Docs/whitePaper/NACME%20white%20paper.pdf

 

Child, Family, and School Psychology alumna, Rachel Wonner Kersteins, is 1 of 15 national semi-finalists for the Health Mart Champions of Care Challenge. Kerstiens volunteers with the organization Girls on the Run, which is an after school running program that engages girls from Grade 3-8.  The program focuses on  teaching girls to embrace difference and celebrate their individual voices through healthy and active practices.

Kerstiens work has earned her a nomination as an unsung community hero. Associated with this nomination was a $1,000 grant that was donated to her Charity of choice; Girls on the Run. There is a $50,000 grant to be donated by Health Mart to the organization, however the winner will be chosen by a vote.

Support CFSP alumna, Rachel Kersteins and “Girls on the Run” by voting: www.healthmartcommunity.com.

The original story was covered on Channel 9 news: http://www.9news.com/story/sports/2014/03/20/denver-nonprofit-grant/6646465/ 

"Manhattan Gold Mining and Milling Company certificate." Courtesy the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, University Libraries, via the Mountain West Digital Library.

“Manhattan Gold Mining and Milling Company certificate.” Courtesy the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, University Libraries, via the Mountain West Digital Library.

Last fall the library and information science (LIS) students in the Digital Libraries class participated in the pilot project launched by the Digital Public Library of America. The Digital Public Library of America (http://dp.la/) is a fairly new initiative aimed at creating a national digital library in the United States. The goal of the project was to provide Library and Information Science (LIS) students with the knowledge and practical experience to curate online exhibitions.  The Morgridge College of Education’s LIS program was among four programs from around the country participating in this pilot program; the School of Information and Library Science at Pratt Institute in New York, University of Washington, and the University of Oklahoma.

The exhibition was created by Heidi Buljung, Chelsea Condren, Rachel Garfield-Levine, Sarah Martinez, Liz Slaymaker-Miller, Chet Rebman, and Brittany Robinson, under the supervision of Professor Krystyna Matusiak. The Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) selected the exhibit created by MCE’s LIS students, Staking Claims: The Gold Rush in Nineteenth-Century America for permanent presentation on the DPLA website.  The exhibit can be viewed at:  http://dp.la/exhibitions/exhibits/show/gold-rush

Denver Public Library, Western History Collection, P-1257.

Denver Public Library, Western History Collection, P-1257.

Artifacts showcased in the exhibit includes historical map of the gold regions of California, a magazine section from the San Francisco Sunday Call in 1910, journal entries, and certificates reflecting ownerships of stock in mining companies . These artifacts reflect the journey west to the gold regions and the romanticization of the gold rush. The exhibition further captured the implications of the gold rush such as marginalization and transformation of the United States. DU LIS student group also selected resources from the Colorado libraries, including images from the Denver Public Library Western History Digital Collections and Pikes Peak Library District Digital Collections. The participation in the DPLA pilot gave DU LIS students an opportunity to discuss the concepts of digital libraries in the real-life context and to apply their technical competencies and collaborative skills into a practical project. To view the online exhibitions at the Digital Public Library of America visit: http://dp.la/info/2014/03/05/new-exhibitions-launch-on-dpla/

Many Morgridge College of Education Library and Information Science (LIS) graduates are not only seeking imaginative, non-traditional roles in the field, but they’re finding them as well. From the variety displayed by recent graduates, the landscape of librarianship has clearly moved far beyond any antiquated stereotypes one may be holding onto.

LIS students often contribute to the traditional sites of public, school, academic, special library and archives settings, but many choose non-traditional roles working for corporations, science and medical companies, web design and content management firms, research firms, or non-traditional academic settings. These tend to be the jobs, that when discussed at a cocktail party, invite inquisitive looks and comments such as, “I didn’t even know that job existed.” But, they do exist, and based on our graduates’ success, it seems the options are boundless.

Some recent graduates shared their experiences in landing exciting, unique jobs as information professionals, and how the LIS program at Morgridge helped to shape the path they took.

A popular and important role for information professionals is digital librarianship and technology services. The graduates we spoke with interact with this role in different ways, but technology is certainly at the core of the work they’re doing.

“My official title is Digital Asset Management Specialist, though that doesn’t really explain what I do.” Grant Outerbridge, a recent LIS graduate, shared what his work involves.

“I am currently engaged in two major projects.  The first project is selecting and configuring a digital asset management (DAM) system for hundreds of thousand of digital photos and videos. This involves designing extensive customized metadata schemas for photos and videos”, Grant explains, “The second project is to help redesign DaVita’s intranet. Once word of my library training spread, I was recruited to help create taxonomies of content and business functions in order to assist the IT department in laying the organizational framework for the new intranet.”

Digital librarianship is an expanding segment of the field of information. Many prospective and current students may be seeking something similar to Grant. His advice?

“The classes I took in Web Content Management, Digital Objects & Collections, and Information Architecture were instrumental in providing me with the intellectual skill set and hands-on experience to be able to do what I do now. Information of Organization made my brain melt a little bit when I took it, but the introduction to taxonomies, folksonomies, and FRBR is what set me down my current path.”

Lindsay Roberts, a Reference Librarian at Arapahoe Community College, teaches information literacy classes, creates LibGuides for the college, catalogs new materials, assists with collection development, and provides reference service to students and faculty.

Lindsay discovered community college librarianship while completing her MLIS. When asked if there was anything in particular from her LIS education that prepared her for this role specifically, she shared a variety of classes and experiences that helped guide her.

LIS Career

“I took Cataloging and Library Instruction, which were both directly applicable to my current role and helped me get the job. I also did a Service Learning project at the Community Technology Center at Denver Public Library and worked as a Graduate Assistant at Auraria Library while in the program. Both of these experiences gave me valuable training in reference and instruction. Finally, Kim Dority’s Alternative Careers class and Jamie LaRue and Sharon Morris’ Leadership class helped me think broadly about information work and all the possibilities for careers. I highly recommend these if they are offered!”

Lindsay’s passion for the community college culture and student population is evident in her approach.

“I love building relationships with students and faculty: ACC staff and students with a wide range of backgrounds. We see many of the same folks in the Library regularly, so we get to know their names and their stories. Students will sometimes come back and say, “Hey, I got an A on that paper you helped me with!” and that’s a wonderful feeling. I think the work we do really matters, since the research skills used for a particular assignment can also help someone with other areas of their life and help them feel more confident about themselves.”

When asked “Why libraries?” many LIS students agree that public service, helping people to find the information they’re seeking, and working with a variety of resources are top of their list of reasons for going into the field of Library and Information Science. The LIS program introduces a variety of classes that shape each individual’s approach to these passions. The varied paths students take is evidence of the range of the field as well as the opportunities.

Katie Yashiro works at the National Park Service (NPS) as a government contractor for Cherokee National Technical Solutions.

“I work in the Technical Information Center (TIC) for NPS. Currently, I assist with the processing of construction, design, and planning documents that NPS produces. This includes organizing, cataloging, and accessioning these documents known as Project Information Files.”

When asked what best prepared her for her role she explained that having a basic fundamental knowledge of how to organize information so that it is findable has been the most beneficial.

Her advice to current or prospective LIS students is to look at job postings for positions they’re interested in. By doing this, you’re able to see what a prospective employer is looking for in terms of certifications, specializations, and classes. Katie claims this was some of the best advice she received while in the program. She also encourages LIS students to network as much as possible by joining different clubs, associations, and affiliations.

“I have learned [this] is a key to advancing your career in the library field. Being as connected as possible to the library community is one of the most beneficial things an LIS student can do.”

The notion of networking and being a part of professional associations is new to many students upon entering the program, but the opportunities to do so on a student level are numerous. And while involvement in the student associations and the coursework, as well as finding your way down this path, may seem overwhelming, a similar sentiment is shared among recent graduates: It’s all about the courses, the people, investigating the path you’re interested in, and utilizing the LIS offerings to get you there.


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