College of Education

Clemson’s first Reading Hall of Fame fellow to be mentored by leading literacy, writing researcher


A Clemson University faculty member specializing in literacy and English for speakers of other languages (ESOL) has been selected for a prestigious fellowship with the Literacy Research Association’s Reading Hall of Fame. Lindsey Rowe, assistant professor of literacy in the College of Education, is the first recipient from Clemson University to receive the Emerging Scholars Fellowship from the organization.

The Literacy Research Association created the fellowship to support young scholars by pairing them with Reading Hall of Fame mentors during their first two years of a college or university tenure-track appointment. The program helps emerging scholars maintain their focus on research and publication as they make their way from the mentored experience of doctoral study to the competing demands of a full-time faculty position.

Rowe said she looks forward to the benefits she will gain from an established mentor in her specific area of academia.

Lindsey Rowe
Lindsey Rowe

“As someone early in their career, I am excited to connect with other scholars and receive mentorship from established faculty whenever possible,” Rowe said. “I know I will benefit from picking the brain of someone who has navigated grant writing, publishing and service to a university in the area I have also chosen to pursue.”

The Reading Hall of Fame has paired Rowe with Steve Graham, the Warner Professor in the Division of Leadership and Innovation in Teachers College, Arizona State University. For more than four decades, Graham has studied how writing develops, how to teach it effectively and how educators can use writing to support reading and learning.

In recent years, Graham has developed and tested digital tools for supporting writing and reading through grants from the Institute of Educational Sciences and the Office of Special Education Programs in the U.S. Department of Education. His research typically involves developing writers and students with special needs in elementary and secondary schools, often in urban classrooms. Graham has served as an advisor to various organizations and advocated for his discipline in multiple forms of media.

“Dr. Graham is a big name in our field and one of its top scholars,” Rowe said. “He is especially established in writing research, which is what I do, and he has experience examining how teachers can support students’ writing motivation. I am interested to learn from him in many different areas.”

Although Graham will undoubtedly positively affect Rowe’s career trajectory, she said that course has been set for many years thanks to her time as a second-grade teacher in a Title 1 school in Tennessee. During this time, her classes would often include students from many different backgrounds, and she would have to consider nine or 10 different languages between them in instruction.

Her time as a teacher provided her with a passion for ensuring all students were included in instruction, but it was a personal connection that cemented her love for writing and her understanding of why it is vital in education.

“Because of my mom, the writer in me has always been encouraged and nurtured,” Rowe said. “She loved to write with me, and, over the years, I’ve noticed a great deal of attention paid to reading in literacy but not so much to writing. There is just as much of a need for writing research in the field, so I’m excited to contribute to that and learn from Dr. Graham’s success in that area.”

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