CLEMSON — Eleven higher education leaders and faculty have been named the inaugural Fellows of the National Dropout Prevention Center at Clemson University. The Fellows will help the center and the National Dropout Prevention Network in their missions to increase high school graduation rates through research and evidence-based solutions.

The NDPC Fellows will focus on collaborative research and include faculty from Clemson University’s College of Health, Education and Human Development (HEHD):

  • Lee Crandall, professor and chairman of public health sciences;
  • Jennie Farmer, assistant professor of special education;
  • Kathy Headley, associate dean for research and graduate studies in HEHD;
  • Jane Clark Lindle, Eugene T. Moore Distinguished Professor of Educational Leadership;
  • Suzanne Rosenblith, professor and chairwoman of the teacher education department; and
  • Dolores Stegelin, professor of early childhood education.

Joining them are higher education leaders:

  • Shanan Chappell, research assistant professor, The Center for Educational Partnerships, Darden College of Education, Old Dominion University;
  • Colleen Dawicki, director of the Urban Initiative at UMass-Dartmouth;
  • Patrick O’Connor, associate professor in the College of Teaching Learning and Curriculum Studies at Kent State University;
  • Terry Pickeral, president of Cascade Educational Consultants, Bellingham, Wash.; and
  • Robert Shumer, research associate at the University of Minnesota.

“These Fellows will broaden the impact of the center and network through efforts such as collaborative research projects, public speaking including keynotes and serving on panels, and the development of practical resources for the field,” said Sam Drew, interim executive director of the National Dropout Prevention Center.

“Indeed, their initial plans include providing a regular meta-analysis of the latest research on dropout risk factors and effective programs, building on the NDPC’s 2007 report ‘Dropout Risk Factors and Exemplary Programs’ and an annual report that will highlight the latest in effective strategies,” he said.

The Fellows program will expand in the next 12 months to include a National Dropout Prevention Network Practitioner Fellows program. Practitioner Fellows will provide the practical outreach through the network, based on the NDPC Fellow’s research findings and their own work in dropout-prevention efforts at the local level.

“Speaking for the network board, we are enthusiastic about this new direction for both the center and the network,” said Stuart Udell, CEO of Catapult Learning Inc. and chairman of the National Dropout Prevention Network board. “We believe that the strength of these concerted efforts in dropout prevention will provide greater use of the center’s outstanding resources and a more widespread dissemination through this growing network.”

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