Stephen F. Austin State University

PCOE News

Perkins College of Education Newsletter

Back Issues

August 2020

November 2020 Newsletter Contents

Message from the Dean

PCOE in the Community

Student Spotlight

Faculty and Staff Spotlight

Important Dates and Deadlines: November-January

Message from the Dean: November 2020

Dr. Judy A. Abbott

By Dr. Judy A. Abbott

I hope you are well as we head into November. Remember, after Thanksgiving, classes will be remote only in most cases due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, we are looking forward to seeing our graduating seniors and May and August graduates in person at three different commencement ceremonies scheduled for Dec. 11-12. Learn more.

The uncertainty of the pandemic caused a 2.7% drop in SFA's overall undergraduate enrollment from fall 2019 to fall 2020, though the Perkins College of Education saw a slight increase from 2,801 students in fall 2019 to 2,827 students in fall 2020.

SFA's overall graduate enrollment increased by more than 10% this fall. Our college's graduate student enrollment increased from 808 students in fall 2019 to 874 in fall 2020. We believe this is due to modernizing application processes, creating the Lumberjack Education Assistance Program for SFA employees and their spouses and dependents, and offering more flexible, virtual learning options. Learn more.

In addition to the transition of hundreds of courses to distance formats because of COVID-19, the Perkins College of Education offers early childhood-grade 6, grades 4-8 and special education online completer programs for transfer students to become teachers.

Also, our online master's and certification programs have helped many advance in their careers. Don't forget, our college was the first at SFA to offer a fully online undergraduate degree with our Bachelor of Science in human sciences. We will soon be the first college at SFA to offer a fully online doctoral degree. Stay tuned!

Have a wonderful and safe holiday season.

Axe 'em,

Dean Abbott

PCOE in the Community

SFA health science student raises awareness in the community

Monica Ortiz, an SFA health science senior from Cypress interning with Nacogdoches Communities and Neighbors, or Nac CAN, recorded a public service announcement in English and Spanish to help promote National Recovery Month and Suicide Prevention Month in September.

SFA student group accepting donations for Thanksgiving Homebound project

Members of SFA's Jacks Council on Family Relations are gearing up for their annual food drive, Thanksgiving Homebound. Those interested in participating should contact JCFR at sfasujcfr@gmail.com to adopt a family. The group will provide a shopping list and general description of the family to help participants purchase food items and gifts.

READ MORE

SFA's speech and language disorders center receives grant to help people with Parkinson's disease

The Stanley Center for Speech and Language Disorders at SFA is one of only 248 hospitals, university speech therapy clinics, private practices and nonprofit organizations worldwide to receive a 2020 Speak Out and Loud Crowd grant from the Parkinson Voice Project.

East Texas has a large population of people diagnosed with Parkinson's disease, according to Deena Petersen, clinic director.

READ MORE

SFA teacher candidates partner with library to provide homework help online

Teacher candidates in SFA's Community Responsiveness and Engaged Advocacy in Teacher Education program, or C.R.E.A.T.E., have partnered with the Nacogdoches Public Library to provide free real-time drop-in homework help for local students.

READ MORE

Student Spotlight

SFA chapter of family and consumer sciences honor society earns national award

"Shining Light and Joy in our Community," a service project by the Beta Upsilon chapter of the Phi Upsilon Omicron national honor society for family and consumer sciences at SFA, received the 2020 National Professional Project Award from Phi Upsilon Omicron's national council.

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SFA to livestream Danceworks performances of senior choreographic works



SFA's dance program will livestream senior choreographic works during its production of "Danceworks: The Effect" at 7 p.m. Nov. 12-13 and 3 p.m. Nov. 14. Unlike past years, only the performers' immediate family members may attend the concerts in person in the HPE Complex, Room 201, because of COVID-19 guidelines. Students, faculty, staff and the public can watch online by making a donation in any amount at sfasu.edu/danceworks. Donors will receive an email the week of the performances containing the livestream link.

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Hospitality students earn best poster honor at international conference

Hospitality administration senior Emily Ellis of Pearland (pictured left above) and human sciences graduate student Marisa Rios of Lytle (pictured right above) earned the Best Poster Award at the International Society of Travel and Tourism Educators virtual conference in October for their poster, "Designing Experiential Culinary Tourism Learning Opportunities with Community Collaborative Partners." They were the only undergraduate and master's students to present at the conference.

Working with Chef Todd Barrios and Dr. Chay Runnels, professor and interim director of the School of Human Sciences, Ellis and Rios presented on their 2019 collaboration with the Nacogdoches Public Library's Big Read program and the Stone Fort Museum. Under the direction of Barrios and Runnels, Rios and Ellis worked with Stone Fort Director Carolyn Spears to design a unique menu based on the book "Into the Beautiful North." Mexican inspired beverages and desserts were served to attendees visiting the Stone Fort Museum as part of a community tour of historic sites in conjunction with Big Read community events.

Faculty and Staff Spotlight

Dr. Sarah Straub awarded Montgomery Professorship for Humane Education

Dr. Sarah Straub, assistant professor of education studies at Stephen F. Austin State University, was awarded the 2020-22 Montgomery Professorship for Humane Education in the James I. Perkins College of Education.

"It is an incredible honor to continue the work of professors like Dr. Brandon Fox and Dr. Leah Kahn," Straub said. "Humane education pushes for compassion, justice and respect, so I am overwhelmed to be recognized as a faculty member who demonstrates these values."

READ MORE

SFA faculty members receive TAER awards for serving students with visual impairments

Dr. Shannon Darst, assistant professor, and Donna "DJ" Dean, clinical instructor, in SFA's Department of Education Studies received two of the 12 awards presented by the Texas Association for Education and Rehabilitation of the Blind and Visually Impaired in 2020 for leadership and service in the field.

READ MORE

Important Dates and Deadlines: November-January

Educator Preparation Program Fall Schedule

University Calendars

Nov. 13 Virtual Transfer Orientation
Nov. 18 Thesis/Dissertation Exam Deadline
Nov. 21-29 Thanksgiving Break
Dec. 1 2021 Orientation Registration Opens
Dec. 3 Clinical Teacher Seminar
Dec. 9 Last Day of Clinical Teaching
Dec. 7-11 Final Exams
Dec. 11-12 In-Person Commencement Ceremonies
Jan. 8 First Day of Spring Semester
Jan. 18 MLK Day Holiday
Jan. 19 Last Day to Change Schedules

August 2020 Newsletter Contents

Message from the Dean

Special Focus: COVID-19 Coverage

PCOE in the Community

Program Spotlight

Student Spotlight

Faculty and Staff Spotlight

Alumni Spotlight

Important Dates and Deadlines

Message from the Dean

Dr. Judy A. Abbott

By Dr. Judy A. Abbott

Welcome to the new quarterly e-newsletter from the James I. Perkins College of Education. We're trying new ways to communicate with our current and former students as well as faculty and staff, especially as deadlines and requirements change rapidly during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please keep monitoring SFA's Guide to Fall 2020 for university-wide updates.

Similar to the end of the spring 2020 semester and this summer, faculty are offering course content primarily using technology - most if not all courses have a BrightSpace site (formerly D2L), where faculty provide 24/7 access to the syllabus, announcements, materials, grades and updates, among other items. Additionally, many faculty are recording their Zoom lectures/learning opportunities and providing those posts on their BrightSpace sites. That seems to be useful for students as they have the opportunity to "re-watch/re-participate" in the lectures and/or learning opportunities. Students are reporting that this "review" opportunity of recorded lectures/learning opportunities increases their learning/understanding. That is good news! We are expecting even better learning practices to be provided during this fall semester, thus we are hopeful that the learning/understanding of students will be even greater!

I also want to welcome you to a new academic year and a new Perkins College of Education structure. Our five units have been streamlined into four units to better serve our students. The Department of Education Studies includes our early childhood, elementary education, secondary education, special education, and deaf and hard of hearing programs, as well as our graduate orientation and mobility and teacher of students with visual impairments programs. The Department of Human Services and Educational Leadership serves students in our communication sciences and disorders, educational leadership, human services, pre-audiology, professional counseling, rehabilitation studies, school psychology, speech-language pathology, student affairs and higher education, and undergraduate orientation and mobility programs.

Our Department of Kinesiology and Health Science continues to offer programs in athletic training, dance, EC-12 all-level physical education, exercise science and health science, while the School of Human Sciences provides degrees in construction management, dietetics and nutritional sciences, food and nutrition, hospitality administration, human development and family studies, family and consumer sciences, interior design, and fashion or interior merchandising.

In faculty news, two of our unit leaders retired this year: Dr. Lynda Martin, director of the School of Human Sciences, and Dr. Robbie Steward, chair of the Department of Human Services and Educational Leadership. We wish them well on their new adventures. Dr. Chay Runnels, professor of human sciences, has stepped in as interim director of the school, and Dr. Luis Aguerrevere, associate professor of human services, is serving as interim chair of the department.

Dr. Lynda Martin
Dr. Lynda Martin
Dr. Robbie Steward
Dr. Robbie Steward
Dr. Chay Runnels
Dr. Chay Runnels
Dr. Luis Aguerrevere
Dr. Luis Aguerrevere

Alumni, as the pandemic continues to greatly impact the economy, I want to remind you that our Center for Career and Professional Development is ready to assist you. If you're thinking about a career change, consider our college's online certification preparation and degree programs. You can view those on the new SFA Online site.

Though this semester will be challenging and uncertain, please know that we're here for you as you gain the real-world knowledge you need for your future career. You can reach us at collegeofeducation@sfasu.edu.

Axe 'em,

Dean Abbott

Special Focus: COVID-19 Coverage

Merchandising Face Masks

Merchandising program selling SFA face masks

SFA is requiring face coverings to be worn in all public indoor spaces and all outdoor spaces when 6 feet of physical distance cannot be reliably maintained.

To help Lumberjacks meet this requirement, students in SFA's merchandising program have designed a two-sided face mask featuring the SFA tartan on one side and a Lumberjack and multi-SFA print on the other.

Modeling the mask in this photo are Jamie Cupit, instructor of merchandising; Dr. Scott Gordon, SFA president; Leisha Bridwell, associate professor of merchandising; and Dr. Judy A. Abbott, dean of the Perkins College of Education.

Masks are $20 each plus shipping. The $20 covers the cost of making the mask and generates funds for the merchandising program.

Because these are high-quality, handmade masks, their expected ship date is late September. Those who ordered their masks in June should have received them in mid-August.

For more information, contact Leisha Bridwell at lbridwell@sfasu.edu.

ORDER MASKS

SFA Counseling Clinic offering free teletherapy during pandemic

The Counseling Clinic in the Department of Human Services and Educational Leadership is accepting new clients and temporarily waiving all fees during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Services include individual, parent and child, couples, family and group therapy, as well as career planning and development.

Clients contact the clinic for help with issues including anger management, anxiety, career counseling, depression, divorce, employment-seeking skills, grief, life adjustments (for example, homesickness), marriage counseling, parenting, problem-solving, social skills, stress management, substance abuse, text anxiety and time management.

READ MORE

Interior design students help SFA prepare to safely reopen during pandemic

Keeping the safety of their fellow students in mind when the campus opens this fall, five interior design seniors at SFA spent the summer working as interns for SFA's Office of Institutional Effectiveness to collect data on classrooms and design safe learning environments for their classmates.

The students' finished floor plans, along with their proposed physical distancing furniture plans and occupant loads for each of the 400 rooms and labs they assessed, are posted on the OIE website for all faculty and staff to access.

READ MORE

SFA Charter School reopens amid pandemic and changing state guidelines

The SFA Charter School carefully kicked off the new school year on Aug. 12 by following a detailed plan to ensure the safety of its students, teachers and staff during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Like all other schools across the nation, the charter school had to close in March and move to online teaching and learning. Staff members also quickly inventoried the perishable food in the school's kitchen, sorted and bagged it, and distributed it to charter school families who qualified as socioeconomically disadvantaged or who were caring for multiple children. The year ended with car parade graduations instead of in-person ceremonies to ensure physical distancing.

READ MORE

SFA health science students, faculty quickly adjust during pandemic

From course content and format to internship availability, students and faculty in SFA's health science program are experiencing huge changes due to COVID-19.

READ MORE

PCOE in the Community

Valarie Larkin Fountain

SFA helps ensure teaching talent for East Texas students through grant

SFA teacher candidates and East Texas students are benefiting from a grant program launched by the Texas Education Agency in 2018.

One of the goals of the Grow Your Own grant program is to recruit and retain teacher candidates in hard-to-staff areas like small and rural school districts.

"Home-grown teachers stay," said Will Cauthen, SFA alumnus and pre-K-12 principal at Martinsville Independent School District. "If we are able to hire teachers who enjoy the small rural school setting, then these teachers and coaches will one day be our seasoned teachers who build on years of success and stability."

Valarie Larkin Fountain, pictured above, was one of the recipients of the grant during the 2019-20 school year. She is now employed at Martinsville ISD.

READ MORE

SFA students, faculty train Lufkin SSLC employees to help residents with visual impairments

About 50 of the residents at the Lufkin State Supported Living Center require some type of visual aid. Because of this, two years ago the center partnered with faculty members and students in SFA's undergraduate orientation and mobility program to conduct "blind mobility" training twice a month for new direct support employees.

SFA students show Lufkin SSLC employees how to safely guide residents up and down stairs and curbs, through doors and in and out of chairs while respecting the residents' independence.

READ MORE

Update: SFA's Cooking Matters program and work with HOPE Pantry, Jo's Diner

The six-week Cooking Matters program, a partnership between SFA's School of Human Sciences and the East Texas Food Bank in Tyler, has been scaled back for the remainder of 2020 because of the pandemic, said Justin Pelham, clinical instructor in food, nutrition and dietetics.

In its sixth year, the program is a class project for students in Pelham's community nutrition course that helps them showcase their skills in a real-world setting. One of the venues for the program is usually Nacogdoches' Helping Other People Eat Pantry.

"Restrictions and limitations with community members make this option not currently feasible even virtually with some patrons not having access to appropriate internet services and/or electronic devices," Pelham said.

Instead, he is working with HOPE Pantry to determine students' volunteering options, whether assisting with on-site food distribution or helping patrons review nutrition content virtually.

The pandemic also cut short Lumberjack Express mobile food lab service to patrons of Jo's Diner last spring, but Dr. Donna Fickes, clinical instructor in hospitality administration, said students will be able to serve to-go meals to the soup kitchen's patrons on Wednesdays between Oct. 14 and Nov. 18 from Lumberjack Express.

Students first will complete the hybrid, eight-week mobile food management lecture course to learn how to acquire and operate a food truck. Then they will practice what they learned while giving back to the community by serving Jo's Diner patrons from Lumberjack Express for the course's lab.

Program Spotlight

TJC-SFA Partnership
New partnership helps TJC students obtain bachelor's degrees in kinesiology at SFA

Students enrolled in Tyler Junior College's wellness and exercise program now have a way to complete a four-year Bachelor of Science in kinesiology with a concentration in exercise science at SFA.

Pictured here at a meditation session during a fitness conference before the pandemic, juniors Garrett Plumlee of Longview, Valentina Stinchfield of Tyler and Breanna Lemons of Hawkins are enrolled in the pathway's inaugural year.

READ MORE

Student Spotlight

Christina Meyers

Meyers named ARCA Master's Student of the Year

Christina Meyers, an SFA student pursuing a Master of Arts in professional counseling with a clinical rehabilitation counseling concentration, was named 2020 Master's Student of the Year by the American Rehabilitation Counseling Association.

She is the first SFA student to receive this honor.

READ MORE

Governor appoints Bramhall as new SFA student regent

Ireland Bramhall of Ennis has been appointed by Gov. Greg Abbott to serve as student regent for SFA during the 2020-21 academic year.

"I love SFA, so to be able to have an impact on the university at a deeper level is something that I've wanted since I stepped foot here my first day of freshman year," said Bramhall, a hospitality administration senior.

READ MORE

Faculty and Staff Spotlight

Tingting Xu

Xu earns Research and Creative Activity grant

Dr. Tingting Xu, associate professor of education studies, earned a Research and Creative Activity grant from SFA's Office of Research and Graduate Studies for her research on redefining engineering in early childhood education through professional development.

She's examining the impact of intensive professional development during the summer on kindergarten and first grade classroom teachers' content and pedagogical knowledge of engineering, as well as their attitudes and efficacy toward teaching engineering.

READ MORE

Faculty members earn Teaching Excellence, Research and/or Creative Activities honors

This year's Perkins College of Education Teaching Excellence Award winners were Drs. Chrissy Cross and Jim Ewing, associate professors in the Department of Education Studies; Dr. Dustin Joubert, assistant professor in the Department of Kinesiology and Health Science; Dr. Rachel Jumper, assistant professor in the School of Human Sciences; and Dr. Daniel McCleary, associate professor in the Department of Human Services and Educational Leadership.

Winners of the college's Research and/or Creative Activities Award were Dr. Nina Ellis-Hervey, assistant professor in the Department of Human Services and Educational Leadership; Dr. Eric Jones, professor in the Department of Kinesiology and Health Science; Dr. Darla O'Dwyer, associate professor in the School of Human Sciences; and Dr. Tingting Xu, associate professor in the Department of Education Studies.

Ewing and Xu were selected to represent the Perkins College of Education at the university's award convocation.

Perkins College of Education announces retirements, promotions, new faculty and staff

The following faculty members retired this year: Neill Armstrong, associate professor in the Department of Education Studies; Deborah Cady, clinical instructor in the Department of Education Studies; Dr. Lynda Martin, director of the School of Human Sciences; and Dr. Robbie Steward, chair of the Department of Human Services and Educational Leadership. Dr. Chay Runnels, professor of human sciences, is interim director of the school, and Dr. Luis Aguerrevere, associate professor of human services, is interim chair of the department.

The college celebrated several promotions this year.

Kristina White was promoted to assistant professor in the Department of Kinesiology and Health Science. Drs. Jim Ewing and Mark Montgomery in the Department of Education Studies and Dr. Flora Farago in the School of Human Sciences were promoted to associate professor.

Dr. Lydia Richardson, assistant professor in the Department of Human Services and Educational Leadership, received tenure. Dr. Chrissy Cross in the Department of Education Studies and Drs. Daniel McCleary and Barbara Qualls in the Department of Human Services and Educational Leadership received tenure and were promoted to associate professors.

Dr. Jeanie Gresham was name professor emeritus of education studies.

The college also welcomed new faculty and staff members:

Department of Education Studies

Dr. William Davis, Visiting Assistant Professor
Dr. Marisol Diaz, Assistant Professor
Dr. Tonya Jeffery, Assistant Professor
Dr. Kevin Jones, Assistant Professor
Dr. Eric Torres, Associate Chair/Associate Professor

Department of Human Services and Educational Leadership

Dr. Rochelle Cade, Associate Professor
Brooklee Grant, Administrative Assistant
Dr. Sarah Irvin, Assistant Professor
Dr. Summer Pannell, Associate Professor
Dr. Elaine Turner, Assistant Professor

Department of Kinesiology and Health Science

Dr. Robyn Whitehead, Assistant Professor

School of Human Sciences

Jill Pruett, Clinical Instructor
Dr. Nathaniel Walker, Assistant Professor
Dr. Ginny Watkins, Visiting Assistant Professor

Student Services and Advising Center

Carla Redfield, Administrative Assistant

SFA's Center for Teaching and Learning: Keep Teaching website helps faculty members transition to remote teaching

Drs. Lauren Burrow, associate professor, and Heather Olson Beal, professor, in the Department of Education Studies used CTL resources to help student teachers in SFA's Community Responsiveness and Engaged Advocacy in Teacher Education program, or C.R.E.A.T.E., give back to Nacogdoches families by providing live online lessons after the pandemic hit.

VIEW VIDEO

Chef Todd Barrios, clinical instructor in the School of Human Sciences, used CTL resources to teach hands-on food preparation online to students who were limited to ingredients in their home pantries because of COVID-19 shelter-in-place orders last spring.

VIEW VIDEO

Alumni Spotlight

Brooks-Quinn-Jones Principals

Continuing a legacy of Lumberjack leadership

Brooks-Quinn-Jones Elementary School in Nacogdoches said farewell to its principal, Tom Miller (on right in above photo), an SFA alumnus (1980 and 1996), this year. But former BQJ assistant principal, Gerald Fonzie, another SFA alumnus (2008 and 2010, on left in above photo), has been promoted to the role to continue the school's legacy of Lumberjack leadership.

Before serving as principal and assistant principal for six years together at BQJ, Miller and Fonzie earned master's degrees in education, as well as their principal and physical education teacher certifications at SFA. They also connected over playing sports growing up and participating in Lumberjack basketball. Miller was a graduate assistant in basketball at SFA from 1978 to 1980, and Fonzie played for the team from 2005 to 2008.

"SFA definitely played a big role in the relationship we have," Fonzie said. "It allowed us to connect from an education and athletics point of view."

READ MORE

Educator Preparation Program recognizing alumni

If you earned an educator certificate through SFA, the Educator Preparation Program wants to recognize you.

Email the name of where you work, the subject and grade level you teach or your position title, and a photo of yourself and your classroom or office to edprep@sfasu.edu.

Teachers save 10% on alumni memberships

SFA's teaching alumni can now join the Alumni Association or renew their annual memberships at a 10% discount. They also receive swag to decorate their classrooms.

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Important Dates and Deadlines

Educator Preparation Program Fall Schedule

University Calendars

August 19 Deadline to Apply for Fall 2020 Educator Preparation Program (mySFA)
August 24 First Day of Fall Classes
September 8 12th Class Day: Virtual Advising Appointments Available
September 15 Deadline to Apply for Spring 2021 Clinical Teaching (mySFA)
October 7 Spring/Summer 2021 Educator Preparation Program Application Opens
October 9 Fall Teacher Expo (Virtual)
October 21 Last Day to Drop Classes
October 21 Fall Career and Internship Expo (Virtual)
November 4 Deadline for Graduate Thesis/Dissertation Final Drafts
November 4 Deadline to Apply for Graduate Thesis/Dissertation Exam