The EDAD Voice Summer 2021 Newsletter

Dr. Crystal Garcia teaching College Students in America course - spring 21

The EDAD Voice Summer 2021 Newsletter

14 Jun 2021     By Dr. Nicholas J. Pace

Greetings from the Department of Educational Administration! At the conclusion of what has been one of the most challenging years in memory, I am pleased to reach out and wish you well.

The last twelve months have been like no other. From the pain and outrage around racism and injustice to the unprecedented disruption brought about by the COVID-19 Pandemic, EDAD students, faculty, and staff experienced myriad challenges. The impacts from all we have endured are far-reaching, deep, and not yet fully understood. With the struggles and challenges of the last year at the forefront of our minds, I’m simultaneously inspired by the ways the EDAD community has navigated together.

• In response to the pandemic, our secretarial staff, Cindy DeRyke and Diane Pope, worked remotely for more than a year without missing a deadline, document, or duty. They are truly the glue that holds us together! Congratulations to Cindy for receiving a Family and Friends Award for her work in supporting students.

• Three faculty members earned tenure and/or promotion: Drs. Stephanie Bondi and Kathy Wesley earned a promotion to associate professor of practice and Dr. Jiangang Xia earned a promotion to associate professor with tenure. We also welcomed three dynamic new members to our faculty team: Drs. Crystal Garcia, Taeyeon Kim, and Scott Sturgeon, along with recruitment and outreach specialist Dr. Dijon DeLaPorte.

• Faculty developed a new mission and vision statement that articulates our work and aspirations and explored ways to enhance our commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, and anti-racism through a year-long effort with an expert facilitator.

• A record 38 doctoral students completed their journeys, along with 46 master’s program grads.

• Through her leadership of CEHS AFIRE, Dr. Stephanie Bondi helped develop and offer series of diversity, equity, and inclusion-focused workshops attended by more than 150 students, faculty, and staff across the year.

• The 34th annual Women in Educational Leadership conference continued virtually. Conference founder Dr. Marilyn Grady was recognized at the Women Lead 2020 event on campus.

• Dr. Sarah Zuckerman earned recognition as a Nebraska Academy of Early Childhood Research Fellow.

• Our faculty continued to be recognized as leaders in their fields through honors, distinctions, fellowships, editorial appointments, receipt of grants, and other accolades. A few examples include an NSF grant awarded to Drs. Elvira Abrica and Deryl Hatch-Tocaimaza and a University of California National Center for Free Speech and Civic Engagement Fellowship to Dr. Elizabeth Niehaus.

• Dr. Jiangang Xia was named as an associate editor of Educational Administration Quarterly.

• Our Master's of Education (MEd/Principalship) program earned its second consecutive national ranking from U.S. News & World Report (#12).

• Dr. Brent Cejda guided six dissertation students to the successful completion of their doctoral degrees and served on 11 other dissertation committees.

• Faculty members undertook an intensive and collaborative effort to strengthen and streamline curricula across the department in innovative and forward-thinking ways, including new master’s level specializations in community college and higher education and a powerful new Ph.D. curricula.

NCIA Executive Director Dr. Kathy Wesley distributed ten editions of Instructional Leadership Abstracts to NCIA members and community college academic leaders across the U.S.A.

• Amid unpredictability, faculty members engaged students creatively and consistently with Zoom, phone calls, in socially distanced settings, and even via virtual reality programming.

• Dr. Corey Rumann continued to infuse ACPA/NASPA competencies in student affairs coursework, in addition to incorporating job search strategies for second-year students and incorporated new class guests and suicide prevention training from Big Red Resilience.

• Dr. Renee Hyde announced that she will be retiring from the department in August. We thank Dr. Hyde for her years of service to the P-12 school leadership program and wish her the best in retirement. Read about some of Dr. Hyde’s reflections on her extensive career in education here.

• We launched a new partnership with the Nebraska Council of School Administrators entitled Research for the Real-World. Each issue of NCSA Today will feature fresh research published by EDAD faculty and students. These concise summaries outline practical takeaways for school leaders in each student published and presented alongside faculty mentors, addressing real-world challenges and opportunities.

• Dr. Shavonna Holman was elected as the inaugural president of the newly-formed Nebraska Association of Professors of School Leadership. Under the heading of the Nebraska Council of School Administrators, this organization brings faculty members from all colleges and universities involved in the preparation of school leaders together to support P-12 school leadership development in Nebraska.

• In June 2021, Drs. Shavonna Holman and Scott Sturgeon launch a podcast called Lead Big REd. This podcast interviews local and national educational leaders about their work and advice to the next generation of leaders. The series can be accessed on YouTube and on MediaHub.

EDAD Alumni Updates. Learn more about our alumni here.

• Longtime EDAD advocate Tyler Hottovy ('09 M.M.) was accepted into EDAD's Ed. D. P-12 School Leadership program and will return to being a graduate student in May.

• Andrew Dick ('10 Ed. D.) was selected to become the next Superintendent of Scottsbluff Public Schools, beginning in July.

• Lindsay Wayt ('15 Ph.D.) contributed a number of publications to the field including co-authored a chapter in Big Data on Campus: Data Analytics and Decision Making in Higher Education which was published in November. Additionally, her work with the National Association of College and University Business Officers afforded her the opportunity to produce a podcast on the state of higher education in February as well as a publication on Medium in March on supporting low-income students.

• Dallas Doane ('18 M.A.) started an Ed. D. program in Adult & Higher Education at the University of South Dakota where he is employed as the honors program coordinator.

• Jennifer Tran ('19 M. Ed.) was named principal of Blessed Sacrament Catholic School in March.

• Cailen O'Shea ('20 Ph.D.) was hired as an assistant professor in the School of Education at North Dakota State University. Additionally, Cailen welcomed a new baby with his wife Amber this winter.

• Kaleb Briscoe (‘20 Ph.D.) began work as an assistant professor of educational leadership at Mississippi State University.

• Celeste Spier ('20 Ph.D.) published an article about balancing working full-time and being a parent while completing her doctoral degree.

• Brenda Preister ('21 M.A.) was promoted to Director of Career and Employment Services for Central Community College – Columbus in March 2021.

We're excited to share a few highlights from 2020 and invite you to continue to engage with our team. Follow our social media accounts on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram and watch for changes to our website. And of course, as pandemic conditions improve, please stop by our offices in Teachers College Hall when you’re on campus! #LeadBigRed

Educational Administration