coE-News: December, 2009, Vol. 5, No. 3


Lastinger Center partnering with Pinellas schools to develop master teachers in science and math

With a $1.6 million boost from Helios Education Foundation of Tampa, UF’s Lastinger Center for Learning is partnering with Pinellas County schools to give as many as 500 math and science teachers a shot at advanced degrees and professional development training. Center director Don Pemberton said it’s all part of the Lastinger Center’s effort to develop master teachers who can improve student achievement in the crucial STEM subjects—science, technology, engineering and math. (more)

COE fetes top efforts in ‘engaged scholarship’

Some of the year’s most noteworthy efforts in engaged scholarship by UF and COE faculty and graduate students were celebrated recently at the college’s 2009 Faculty Research and Engaged Scholarship Showcase. Above, P.K. Yonge 9th grade biology instructor Mickey MacDonald (center) is presented the Scholarship of Engagement Award for PKY faculty by COE Dean Catherine Emihovich (left) and PKY Director Fran Vandiver. (more)

Visit the college home page for links to these and other reports about College activities, accomplishments and faculty-staff-student-alumni news and achievements.

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College News & Notices

Distinguished Speaker Series resumes with 2 new lectures

The College of Education’s 2nd annual Distinguished Speaker Series: “21st Century Pathways in Education” resumes in early 2010 with the fourth and fifth lectures in the yearlong series, scheduled in January and February, respectively.


Lecture #4 — JAN. 21: “.” STL’s Sevan Terzian will moderate this panel presentation and follow-up discussion about the scholarship of teaching at a Research-1 institution. Panel members are all recent recipients of the college’s most prestigious teaching awards, including Mirka Koro-Ljungberg (SHDOSE), Erica McCray (SESPECS) and Jane Townsend (STL).

Lecture #5 — FEB. 4-5: (Title and details TBA soon.) Guest Speaker is Don Deshler, Special Education Professor and Director, University of Kansas Center for Research on Learning. He is one of the nation’s preeminent scholars in adolescent literacy and special education at the secondary level. (Deshler’s itinerary and presentation details will be announced soon.)

Int’l Education Week spurs ideas about college ‘globalization’

College of Education students need more exposure to diversity through activities like studying abroad, concluded a panel of four College of Education professors, joined by UF International Center Dean David Sammons. The group discussed strategies for internationalizing UF as part of the college’s recent International Education Week festivities. Pictured, above, are faculty panel members (from left) Maria Coady, Linda Jones and Thomas Oakland. (more)

Recycle? Yes we CAN

Above, COE staff members Ambrya Strode (center) and Jenny Palgon (right) take aim before tossing crushed Coke cans into recycle bins to win raffle tickets from staffer Susan Stabel. The can toss and raffle were part of the recent “Drop, Shop & Swap Recycle Fest”, which featured prizes, music, refreshments, games and a swap shop to promote recycling among COE faculty and staff. Used treasures – office supplies, clothes, purses, curling irons, Christmas decorations, shredders and more – covered three tables and were free for attendees. COE Green Team Captain Christine Cook, who organized the event, said she hopes to stage a similar event around Earth Day in April. (Photo & copyblock by Jennifer Tormo, COE News-Comm intern)

Helping out at Ronald McDonald House

Several COE staff members participated in the Visiting Chef program recently at the Ronald McDonald House in Gainesville, preparing food for some 50 guests. Pictured above are the chivalrous chefs from COE (from left) Whitney Shadowens, Prentiss Ladkani, Jodi Mount, Jenny Palgon, Karen Ledee and Rosie Warner. The Ronald McDonald House provides temporary housing and basic amenities and support to familes with critically ill children being treated at Shands and other local hospitals. If you’d like to help with future efforts, visit or contact Prentiss at

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Awards & Appointments


Ed tech researcher cited for innovations in online learning

Cathy Cavanaugh, associate professor in education technology, has received international recognition for advancing innovative online learning in public primary schools. Cavanaugh received one of the inaugural Online Innovator Awards presented recently by the International Association for K-12 Online Learning (iNACOL). (more)

Counselor Ed scholars named International Educators of Year

Counselor education faculty members Edil Torres-Rivera and Cirecie West-Olatunji (above) were recently selected as the College of Education’s 2009-10 International Educators of the Year. (more)

REM team report cited as most distinguished paper

A research report authored by a College of Education faculty-student team in Research and Evaluation Methodology (REM) was chosen as the most distinguished paper at the recent 2009 annual meeting of the Florida Educational Research Association. The paper, titled “Estimating Treatment Effects in Observational Longitudinal Studies: The performance of a Latent Growth Model for Multiple Matched Groups,” was written by Assistant Professor Walter Leite and REM doctoral students Jann MacInnes, Rong Jin and Robert Sandbach.

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Cronin Jones, L. (October 2009). The Impact of Outdoor Schoolyard Learning Activities on Diverse Learners. Paper presented at the 2009 North American Association for Environmental Education Research Symposium, Portland, Oregon.

Twiest, M.M. & Cronin Jones, L. (October 2009). Creating an Environmental Learning Community on a University Campus. Presentation at the 2009 North American Association for Environmental Education Conference, Portland, Oregon.

Cronin Jones, L. (October 2009). Making Global Connections: Linking Science and Social
Studies in Middle and High School Classrooms.
Professional development workshop presented at the annual meeting of the Association of American Schools in Colombia, the Caribbean, Central America, and Mexico, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.

Cronin Jones, L. & Jones, G.(October 2009). What’s Your Media-Literacy IQ?: Hoe to Use Web-Based Videos and Other Internat Resources to Bring Science to Life in Your Classroom. Professional development workshop presented at the annual meeting of the Association of American Schools in Colombia, the Caribbean, Central America, and Mexico, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.

STL shines at History Education Society meeting

The college’s School of Teaching & Learning was well represented at the History of Education Society’s recent annual meeting in Philadelphia, with eight current students, recent graduates and faculty presenting research reports. (more)

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