New dean’s staff aims high as College nears 100th year

As the UF College of Education approaches its 100th year of preparing teachers, counselors, school administrators and other educators for their life's work, several new academic leaders and top administrators will be on hand to help Dean Catherine Emihovich lead the college's efforts to reach the top tier of American education schools.

The college, which held its firs…


September 14, 2005



As the UF College of Education approaches its 100th year of preparing teachers, counselors, school administrators and other educators for their life’s work, several new academic leaders and top administrators will be on hand to help Dean Catherine Emihovich lead the college’s efforts to reach the top tier of American education schools.

The college, which held its first classes in 1906, currently ranks 15th among public education schools of the year in a row in the U.S. News and World Report rankings of the nation’s top graduate education schools.

Emihovich, UF’s education dean since 2002, has been assembling a staff she thinks can help the college develop nationally reputed academic programs and attract eminent faculty and top students worldwide, moves designed to elevate the college into a top-10 national ranking.

The dean’s new “cabinet” includes a new associate dean for research, two new academic department chairs, and three new directors for programs in graduate studies, informational and instructional technology, and a novel university-schools alliance created to improve educational opportunities for inner-city high school students.

Here are brief profiles of the six new College of Education appointees:


Paul Sindelar
Professor and Associate Dean for Research

Sindelar assumes the new post of associate dean for research after five years as co-director of the Center on Personnel Studies in Special Education (COPSSE). He and his new Research Office staff will support college faculty in their efforts to obtain external funding for research and training initiatives. Sindelar previously headed the college’s Center for School Improvement for five years and was chair of special education from 1988-1996. His research interests include teacher effectiveness, alternative-route teacher preparation, and the cost-effectiveness of teacher preparation options. In his 17-year UF career, he has brought into the College of Education more than $11 million in external funding.

“Improving the research culture is a high priority,” Sindelar said, “and everyone here understands the importance of bringing in external funding for the research. My job is to put the infrastructure in place to move the college forward on both fronts.”


Linda Serra Hagedorn
Professor and Chair, Dept. of Educational Administration and Policy

Hagedorn is the former associate director of the Center for Higher Education Policy Analysis at the Rossier School of Education at the University of Southern California, and also co-directed the Higher Education/ Community College Leadership concentration of the Ed.D. program. She has written numerous articles on community college student success, equity issues and college retention of underrepresented student groups, and is the vice president of the postsecondary education division of the American Educational Research Association (AERA).

“Our department has changed its name to Educational Administration and Policy, so the new name and the new chair will usher in many changes,” Hagedorn said. “This year we will establish curriculum advisory boards to assist us to revise our courses and programs to attract top-notch students globally.”

Tina Smith-Bonahue
Associate Professor and Interim Chair, Dept. of Educational Psychology

Smith-Bonahue, an associate professor, recently added interim chair to her departmental responsibilities in education psychology. She also is educational director of UF’s Multidisciplinary Diagnostic and Training Program (MDTP) for children with complex learning, behavioral or medical needs, and teaches in the Unified PROTEACH Early Childhood Program. Her primary research interests include the temperament and behavioral adjustment of high-risk preschoolers, and inclusion of preschoolers.


Thomasenia Adams
Associate Professor and Director, Office of Graduate Studies

Adams, associate professor and former graduate coordinator in teaching and learning, is the founding director of the new office of graduate studies in education. She will work closely with the associate dean for research, department chairs, graduate coordinators, faculty and staff to enhance the quality of graduate teaching and research in the college. She also will assist in recruiting and mentoring strong graduate students as the college heightens its emphasis on graduate education. Her primary research interests focus on math and geometry teachers’ subject-matter knowledge, teaching math from a multicultural perspective, and mathematics as a language.

“One of my primary goals is to promote graduate education so we grow with the overall university goal to increase graduate enrollment,” Adams said. “We are looking to improve every facet of graduate education in the college.”

Bernard Oliver
Professor and Director, UF Alliance

Oliver, a veteran university and public schools administrator and a scholar in urban and multicultural education, is the new head of the UF Alliance, a school-improvement partnership involving UF and six under-resourced urban high schools across Florida. He most recently was assistant superintendent for high school education in the Virginia Beach City Public Schools. Oliver also has held faculty and administrative posts at several universities, including the Ewing Kauffman endowed chair at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, and dean and professor at Washington State University.

Tracey (Trace) Choulat
Director, Informational and Instructional Technology

Choulat is no stranger to the special technology needs of higher education. In the past 10 years, he has designed, built or managed information technology groups, networks and servers, and academic computing environments for more than a dozen colleges and universities across the United States. He most recently was technical director for SunGard Collegis, Inc., of Maitland, Fla. At UF, one of his first tasks will be developing a technology strategic plan for the college.

“The Office of Information and Instructional Technology will be assessing the computing needs of the college, working to improve service levels and developing a strategic plan to align technology infrastructure with the goals and objectives of the college,” Choulat said.

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“These new appointments continue the restructuring of the dean’s area that began when I arrived three years ago,” Emihovich said. “These appointments, along with all the other new faculty, st
aff and administrators that have joined us, will position our college very nicely to maintain our leadership in professional education across Florida and throughout the world.

“It’s a great time to be an ‘alumni’ as the college prepares to celebrate the start of our next 100 years in 2006.”