Counselor Ed Alum Credits College for Career Success

Cathy Hardage (MED & EDS ’96, School Counseling & Guidance) credits the UF College of Education to her career success.

“I wanted to compliment the recent issue of the College of Education magazine.  I am a graduate of the Counselor Ed Program at UF (1996), and I really enjoy keeping up with what is going on. The College did a fine job of highlighting the fine education program at UF.  I retired as the Head of School at St. Mark’s Episcopal Day School in Jacksonville, Florida in June of this year. My masters and specialist degrees from UF were instrumental in helping me advance my career. I began as a guidance counselor, then went on to become an assistant head of school, and then a head of school. All I gained at this program at UF, helped me tremendously in my day to day work in my various positions.  Best of luck and great job on the magazine!”

After completing the UF Couselor Education program, Hardage was hired as the first guidance counselor at Grace Episcopal School in Ocala in 1996.  “I was able to completely create the program,” she says.  “I put in place everything I learned at UF, large group guidance, small groups for specific purposes, individual counseling, a peer facilitator program. I had no restrictions and I was able to set up a true guidance program , without a great deal of clerical responsibilities. In 1997, I was called to be the assistant head of school . I took on this responsibility , while continuing the guidance program I had implemented.”

In 2001, Cathy Hardage became the assistant head of school at San Jose Episcopal Day School, located in Jacksonville.  The next year, she received the Hooker Grant from the Florida Council of Independent Schools for a character education program she developed called, “Fruits of the Spirit.”  Cathy published a booklet with the grant money on how to implement the “Fruits of the Spirit” program in secular and religious schools..

In 2006, Cathy Hardage became the head of school at St. Mark’s Episcopal Day School in Jacksonville.  She remained the head of the school until her recent retirement in June.  Her character education program is also incorporated into the school’s community culture.


Citrus County Schools Recognized for Innovative Technology Use

Mike Geddes (PhD ’04, Curriculum & Instruction) is the Director of Instructional Technology for Citrus County Schools. Under his leadership, the district was recently recognized by the U.S. Department of Education for innovative and effective technology use.

Full article: Florida County Uses Technology to Engage Students and Innovate in the Classroom.


EduGator Homecoming Tailgate

On Saturday, the College of Education hosted an EduGator Homecoming Tailgate for alumni, faculty, and friends at the Norman Hall Plaza. Attendees were able to meet Dean Glenn Good and reconnect with fellow alumni before heading to the Florida vs. Missouri Homecoming game. This year we had BBQ from 4 Rivers and games for our guests.

Click here to see pictures from the event.

This year’s EduGator Homecoming Tailgate was a success!

Go Gators!






Alum presented with Teaching Excellence Award

Lyle McKinney, a 2010 UF doctoral graduate in higher education administration, was recently awarded the University of Houston’s 2014 Teaching Excellence Award.

McKinney is an assistant professor of higher education and faculty-in-residence at UH.

This award isn’t McKinney’s first recognition as a top teacher. In 2013, he received the UH College of Education Research Excellence Award and also was one of four assistant professors across the state of Texas to serve as a Faculty Fellow of the Greater Texas Foundation.

He said his goal is to help shape public policies and institutional practices that raise the chances of success for community college students. He said he benefitted from UF COE’s national reputation as one of the best at preparing highly effective community college educators.

“UF gave me this great opportunity as a student to immerse myself in meaningful research,” he said. “It built a confidence that kind of snowballed.”

As a member of the Houston Gator Club, McKinney still feels closely linked to the Gator Nation. He said he gains a deeper appreciation for the knowledge and motivation his alma mater provided as the years go by.

“I want to take the knowledge I’ve gathered from UF and use it to improve the lives of others,” he said.


UF Higher Ed. Alumna named YTC Dean

UF higher education administration alumna Monique Perry was recently appointed dean of enrollment services at York Technical College. York Tech is a two-year community and technical college outside of the Charlotte, North Carolina area.

As dean, she oversees student recruitment and admissions, academic records, the college-wide call center, and financial aid.

She earned her Ed.D. in higher education administration with a concentration in community college leadership from UF in 2013.

“The depth of knowledge, exposure and the support of the UF network I developed there helped make me competitive for my current position,” Perry said. “Our program focused on developing us as a total package.”

Perry’s research interests include the impacts of the multi-generational workforce on higher education and its ability to attract and retain future leaders, especially millennials. Her dissertation at UF included research on millennial faculty workplace preferences and their impact on job satisfaction.

“My legacy is to not only help develop people in higher education, but also make sure that I contribute to programs, initiatives and guidelines that help make students successful,” she said

Ed Leadership Alum Wins National Principal of the Year

Jayne Ellspermann (MED ’84, Education Leadership) became the principal of West Port High School soon after it opened in 2003. Ellspermann’s dedication to the students of West Port has resulted in higher FCAT scores and many seniors earning Associate’s degrees from Central Florida before graduation. The National Association of Secondary School Principals has named Jayne Ellspermann the 2015 National Principal of the Year.

Jayne Ellspermann earned her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Georgia in 1977. In 1984, she earned her Master’s degree in Education Leadership from the University of Florida. For the full Ocala Star Banner article, click here.  Alumni Accolades article here.


photo credit: Alan Youngblood/Star-Banner


Alum Is New Director of FJCC

Stephen Masyada (MEd ’02, Social Studies Ed & PhD ’13, Curriculum & Instruction) became the Director of the Florida Joint Center for Citizenship in August 2014. The Florida Joint Center for Citizenship is a combined effort of the Lou Frey Institute of Politics and Government and the Bob Graham Center for Public Service. His primary focus is on professional development relating to civics education in Florida. Dr. Masyada previously worked for the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction as a Social Studies Education consultant.

Dr. Stephen Masyada is currently the President Elect of the Council of State Social Studies Specialists. He earned a BA in History in 2000, a MEd in Social Studies Education in 2002, and a PhD in Curriculum & Instruction in 2013 from the University of Florida. While pursuing his PhD, Masyada taught Social Studies in Levy County. He is also a former teacher of the year at Williston High School, 2003-2004.

Steve DPI

Higher Ed Alum Is New President of PCC’s Desert Vista Campus

Dr. Morgan Phillips (EDS ’00 & EDD ’02, Higher Ed. Admin) is the new president of Pima Community College’s Desert Vista Campus in Tucson, AZ.

Dr. Phillips has served as the Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs at Southeastern Community College in Whiteville, N.C., since 2012. He is responsible for all the college’s academic programs and student development functions, as well as its technology operations and accreditation efforts.

Dr. Phillips served as Southeastern’s Vice President of Curriculum Instruction for six years before assuming his current position. His two decades’ experience in higher education includes serving as a faculty member, department chair, and academic dean at Valencia Community College in Orlando, FL.

Morgan holds a Doctor of Education degree in Higher Education Administration from the University of Florida.  In 2007, Morgan Phillips was the UF Institute of Higher Education Outstanding Graduate.


UF alum Neuhard named president of FSCJ Kent campus

Ian Neuhard (Ed.D. ’13) will be the new president of the Florida State College at Jacksonville’s Kent campus beginning July 14.

Neuhard, who has served as dean of baccalaureate programs for the past seven years at Indian River State College in Fort Pierce, Fla., said his experience at UF provided the impetus for landing his new position.

“Earning my doctorate last year was a key aspect of my successful candidacy,” he said. “I have the faculty at the College of Education to thank for all the hard work, advice and assistance they provided as I worked to complete the program and achieve this next important step in my career.”

Neuhard majored in higher education administration at UF. He received his master of professional studies degree in community services administration from Alfred University in New York in 1997.

He earned his bachelor’s degree in English language arts education at the University of Central Florida in Orlando after receiving an associate in arts degree from Valencia Community College, also in Orlando.

Elementary Ed Alum Wins ISTE Technology Innovation Award

Caitlin McLemore (BAE ’09 & MEd ’10, Elementary Ed) was part of a team that won the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) SIGLIB (library special interest group) Technology Innovation Award for 2014. According to the ISTE website, ”ISTE presents this award to one team consisting of a school librarian and collaborating teacher, from one primary school (K-5) or its equivalent, each year. We’re looking for teams that have planned a collaborative project involving technology, received support from administration, and successfully executed the project with supportive data and evidence for others to replicate the project.”  Caitlin and her colleague, Melissa Powers, submitted lesson plans and artifacts from a lesson they implemented with 4th grade teachers about civil rights utilizing resources including VoiceThread and Google Apps. Caitlin and Melissa were awarded several prizes including cash to purchase technology resources for the school and a free trip to the ISTE conference in Atlanta in July.

Caitlin McLemore was the Media Technology Integrationist at Currey Ingram Academy, a K-12 independent school in Brentwood, TN for students with learning differences, from 2012-2014. She will be starting a new position as Technology Integration Specialist at Harpeth Hall, an all-girls independent school for grades 5-12 in Nashville, TN in August.  In 2009, Caitlin graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from the University of Florida.  The following year, she graduated with her Master’s degree in Elementary Education, with a specialization in Education Technology.

ISTE Official Press Release:
Tennessean Article: