Clemson’s College of Education has awarded four graduate students its Teaching and Learning Online M.Ed. Award to recognize exemplary educators who show evidence and potential as leaders in their field. Leadership in the college’s teaching and learning department has recognized one graduate student from each of the M.Ed. program’s specializations with the award.
Peter Moccia is the awardee from the M.Ed. program’s STEAM specialization. Moccia said he has already been able to implement many of the principles he has learned in the program, many of which “galvanized” him to spearhead research about argument-driven inquiry in his school. Moccia hopes to start an action research committee to empower colleagues to be supportive and more reflective about their teaching.
“I did not expect to feel so connected while learning remotely but Clemson does such a wonderful job of bringing people together from all over the country and even other countries so that we can engage in thoughtful discussion,” Moccia said.
Experiential Learning for Early Childhood
Abigail Cathcart is the awardee from the M.Ed. program’s Experiential Learning for Early Childhood specialization. She said the program has allowed her to continue to further enrich her knowledge, practice and pedagogy while continuing to enrich the lives of her students. Cathcart looks forward to using the tools afforded to her by the M.Ed. program to become a leader who embraces inclusivity with evidenced-based practices, creativity guided with data driven decisions and flexibility with developmentally appropriate practices.
“I am thankful for the amazing professors, colleagues, and staff at Clemson University,” Cathcart said. “Because of their guidance and support I am continuously expanding my educational knowledge and leadership to help educate the future leaders, innovative thinkers and ambassadors of the next generation.”
Effective and Reflective Teaching
Jessica Fielding is the awardee from the M.Ed. program’s Effective and Reflective Teaching specialization. She said the program provides educators with the tools to reflect deeply on their skills and initiate change throughout their careers, which she points out as especially important in a field that continuously evolves.
“The online M.Ed. in Teaching and Learning program has been a gratifying and collaborative experience,” Fielding said. “This program has brought educators from every specialty and background together to create an enriching and eclectic learning environment.”
Katherine Codino is the awardee from the M.Ed. program’s Instructional Coaching specialization. She said that the program has allowed her to work with talented, knowledgeable classmates and faculty who are willing to share their expertise. The community she has found through the program has allowed her to evolve her mindset around education and her role as an educator into something more purposeful.
Codino plans to factor lessons learned through the program into coaching sessions and workshops aimed at teachers as well as research on effective teaching practices.
“I look forward to going out within my school, district and global community with the goal of sharing the knowledge I have gained through my experience and in this program,” Codino said. “I will be able to positively affect and support teachers within their field through teaching, learning and instructional coaching.”
Students who were enrolled in their second semester of coursework could apply for the award by developing an essay discussing how they plan to use the expertise gained as part of their degree to develop as a leader in their field or educational setting. Applicants also provided a letter of support from an administrator, supervisor or colleague. Awardees will enjoy a $6,000 tuition reduction as part of the award recognition.
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