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College of Education



Office of the Dean


Jenna ShimA Message from Jenna Min Shim, the John P. "Jack" Ellbogen Dean

Hello, and welcome to the College of Education. My name is Jenna Min Shim, and I currently serve as the John P. “Jack” Ellbogen Dean, the Trustees Education Initiative (TEI) Executive Director, and Professor.

The University of Wyoming, located in Laramie, Wyoming, admitted its first group of students in the fall of 1887. The original State Normal School for teacher preparation was in Old Main, the first campus building. Three factors contributed to this development: the continual evolution and significance of the State Normal School in the preparation of teachers for Wyoming, the establishment and growth of the University Prep School, and a growing need for secondary education in the state.

Now, our college houses two academic units: the School of Counseling, Leadership, Advocacy, and Design (CLAD) and the School of Teacher Education (STE). We also continue to support education across Wyoming via outreach units like the Literacy Research Center and Clinic (LRCC), the Early Care and Education Center (ECEC), the Science Math and Teaching Center (SMTC), the Wyoming School-University Partnership (WSUP), the WellSpring Counseling Clinic, and the Trustees’ Education Initiative. We also proudly provide first-rate advising and student success services via our Education Student Success Center (ESSC).

As the interim dean, my core commitment on behalf of the College of Education, as part of a land-grant university, is to serve the state of Wyoming in ways that continue to improve the lives of both children and adults through education. Rooted in this commitment, my four key visions are:

  1. Support and deliver highest quality education, expand resources, and enhance university-district partnerships to prepare students for the future, in Wyoming and beyond.

  2. Improve teaching and educational outcomes through research and projects focused on rural education's unique opportunities and challenges.

  3. As a land-grant university, deepen engagement and partnerships to benefit Wyoming's rural areas.

  4. Cultivate a nurturing environment that supports the well-being, growth, and success of faculty, staff, and students, ensuring their collective and individual prosperity.

The college has launched a number of statewide initiatives to advance these goals. If you would like more news about our activities, I disseminate a weekly newsletter. Click the button below to read the latest updates and explore the archive.


Jenna Shim

Jenna Shim




Weeky Updates From the Dean


Dear colleagues,
Campus has been beautiful this week. There is a floral scent in the air as trees bud and blossom, and the balmy temperatures have enticed us all to throw open our windows and take our time when strolling across campus. With the spring semester wrapped up, I am pleased to send another weekly update on spring celebrations.
“Laramigo” Award Winner: The College of Education faculty and staff have received an astounding number of awards this spring. Our True Grit award winner, Nicholas Jesse, has been recognized for a second honor: the “Laramigo” Award for Community Engagement. This award goes to UW faculty or staff who show exemplary service to UW as well as demonstrate service to the Laramie community. Nicholas is not only an exceptional CoE member as the senior project coordinator of the Wyoming School-University Partnership, but he is committed to serving the community of Laramie. With an impressive portfolio of volunteer work, he currently serves as the chair of a local non-profit, Laramie PrideFest. Congratulations and thank you, Nicholas!
Graduation Success: The University of Wyoming successfully conducted its graduate and undergraduate ceremonies last Saturday, May 11, at the Arena-Auditorium. As usual, it was a spectacular event and a true honor to watch those among our 104 bachelor’s degree recipients and a stunning 117 master’s and doctoral degree recipients walk across the stage. Many thanks to the CoE Student Success Center team and a very special and many thanks to Britany Kathan for her hard work as the college’s commencement coordinator.   Please check out several heartwarming and proud graduation photos of our students on the College of Education's social media
UW-Casper graduation was also a tremendous success. The commencement was packed with supporters of graduates, and President Seidel, in his speech, mentioned that it was one of the most impressively enthusiastic groups of people he has seen at any commencement he has attended. A special recognition and thanks to Dr. Brent Pickett, the UW-Casper Dean, and his team for their outstanding academic excellence and dedicated hard work.
College of Education Advocacy Board Meeting: Next Monday, May 20, the College of Education Advocacy Board will convene here on campus for its spring meeting. The mission of the University of Wyoming College of Education Advocacy Board is to serve statewide as ambassadors, representing the College to its constituents and stakeholders to promote advocacy and provide critical feedback for the benefit of the College of Education. Sincere gratitude to the board members for their valuable service and support of the college.
Departures from the College: I have a final, bittersweet announcement before we begin our summer semester. Drs. Richard Carter and Ali Bicer have both accepted new faculty positions and will not be returning to the UW College of Education next fall. Richard has accepted the Ted S. Hasselbring Chair of Special Education Technology position at Indiana University, and Ali has accepted a position as Associate Professor of Math Education at Texas A&M University. On behalf of the College of Education, we will miss you both and wish you the best in these next steps in your careers. Thank you for all your contributions during your time at UW.
I hope everyone has a rejuvenating summer as many of our faculty conclude their academic year, and our staff enjoy the calmer and beautiful summer campus. Our administrative team will continue our work on campus and beyond, so please feel free to stop by and say hello. I will be pausing my weekly updates until the beginning of the next academic year in August when everyone has returned for the fall semester. Thank you all for your hard work and dedication!
Dear colleagues,
Congratulations! We have made it to the conclusion of another academic year, and I am proud of our students, faculty, staff, and supporters for all of their hard work and accomplishments thus far.
Last night, I had the privilege to attend the President’s Commencement Dinner, where we celebrated honorary doctoral recipients Greg Hill and Noah Hull. I was struck by the remarkable work of these individuals in Wyoming business and healthcare and was moved by their speeches. Cottonwoods appeared in several metaphors, and I could not help but be reminded of our own college when considering these hearty, resilient trees. Even when the winds are strong or we have not seen rain in weeks, we remain rooted in place and we face forward fearlessly.
There was also good news for the college. Our faculty, Barbara Hickman, was given an Ellbogen Meritorious Classroom Teaching Award. Ana Houseal and Ali Bicer were also recognized with Presidential Scholarly Achievement Awards for Tenured Faculty, and Alison Mercier was honored with a Presidential Scholarly Achievement Award for Promising Early-Career Faculty.  
At the President’s Commencement Dinner, I also had the pleasure of visiting with Dave and Kelly Dunham, friends and supporters of the College of Education. You might remember, Dave and Kelly are the creators of the Dunham Family Fellows program to support developing future teacher leaders in Wyoming.
2023-2024 was the year in which I served as the John P. “Jack” Ellbogen Interim Dean and now as the John P. “Jack” Ellbogen Dean of the College of Education, and it has been an honor. Our faculty, staff, and students faced many challenges and brought back many successes and honors to our college. I look forward to the great things that await us next fall.
As we tiptoe – cautiously – into summer, I am excited to share a few updates with all of you from last week:
College of Education Meeting: Our final College of Education meeting was well-attended with over 60 attendees, including a guest scholar from the University of Southern Queensland. It was a celebratory meeting as we announced the recipients of the College of Education Staff, Faculty, and Graduate Student Awards:
  • Faculty Award for Outstanding Teaching: Alison Mercier
  • Faculty Award for Outstanding Research and Scholarship: Amanda DeDiego
  • Faculty Award for Outstanding Service to the Educational Profession: Martha Inouye
  • Faculty/Staff Award for Outstanding Advising: Levi Moore
  • Staff Award for Outstanding Service to the College: Britany Kathan
  • Award for Outstanding Contributions Toward Improving the Climate of the College: Lindsey Nichols
  • Outstanding Graduate Student Award for Significant Accomplishments: Brittanie Kuhn
Congratulations to these outstanding individuals for their important contributions to the College of Education.
We also celebrated the successful conclusion of ten faculty searches:
  • Special Education Assistant Professor: Ling Zhang
  • Science and Math Teaching Center Director: Jessica Marcolini
  • Counseling Program Assistant Professor: Ty Tedmon-Jones
  • Counseling Program Assistant Professor: Brittney Phillips
  • Special Education Assistant Lecturer: Jennifer Krause
  • Assistant Professor of Early Childhood Education: Amy Encinger
  • Special Education Assistant Professor: Tiffany Hunt
  • Elementary Literacy Education Assistant Lecturer: Stella Nowell
  • Secondary Mathematics Education Assistant Professor: Miriam Sanders
  • John P. Ellbogen Foundation Professor of Early Childhood Education: Marisa Macy
I look forward to welcoming these talented professors and lecturers to our ranks in the fall and am eager to see what they accomplish. As announced during the College of Education meeting earlier this week, we will be welcoming additional fixed-term lecturers. I will share more details as their appointments are finalized.
Spring Commencement: A final reminder that the commencement ceremony for graduate students will be held tomorrow, May 11, from 12:15 PM in the Arena Auditorium. The College of Education will honor its undergraduate students during the afternoon undergraduate ceremony, beginning at 3:30 PM in the arena auditorium. Faculty and staff participating in the ceremonies should report to the Fieldhouse at 11:15 AM and 2:30 PM respectively, one hour before each ceremony begins.
I will then make my way to Casper to celebrate our UW-Casper graduates at the Casper Commencement at the Best Western in downtown Casper on May 12 at 2:30 PM. It will be a busy, but felicitous Mother’s Day weekend!
Spring Wyoming Curriculum Directors Conference: Earlier this week, on Tuesday, May 7, Christi Thompson, Colby Gull, Rob Hill, and I had the privilege of presenting our college's current initiatives at the Wyoming Curriculum Directors Conference in Casper. The group was particularly engaged with our discussion on the Wyoming Teacher Mentor Corps (WTMC), which will soon begin training its third cohort, The presentation sparked a lot of insightful questions from the audience.
Megan Degenfelder, the Wyoming Superintendent of Public Instruction, also presented her vision of education in Wyoming and highlighted the Wyoming Department of Education’s partnership with the College of Education to work on the Wyoming Principal Leadership Academy. We continue to strive toward our land-grant university mission of serving the state of Wyoming.
Once again, excellent work to everyone. This morning, I will venture to the UW Gateway Center and present during the Board of Trustees March Meeting Executive Session. It has been an honor to have our trustees in Laramie during this momentous week and weekend.
I look forward to seeing everyone on Saturday and Sunday, and, again, extend my sincere congratulations and appreciation.
Dear colleagues,
I am writing to you this week from Riverton where I am attending the RIDE Student-Centered Learning Statewide Celebration of Learning at Central Wyoming College. I am joined by Pete Moran, Alan Buss, Mia Williams, Jake Orr, Alex Rickert, and Leslie Rush from the College of Education.
I came to Riverton after visiting Powell yesterday with Rob Hill, our CTE outreach consultant. The welcoming colleagues at Northwest College offered us a tour of their excellent facilities for AutoCAD drafting, welding, healthcare training, photography, and graphic design, to name a few. Wyoming’s community colleges truly lead the way for workforce development and quality, affordable, and accessible education across Wyoming, and we have much to learn from them.
Wyoming Rural Teacher Corps Capstone Fair: Here in Laramie, the Wyoming Rural Teacher Corps year 2 cohort did a remarkable job presenting their research and experiences in rural education last year, and the event attracted an impressive audience! From student farms to aspen bark sourdough, and an array of other place-based perspectives, these students demonstrated expert insight into the best parts of small-town education in Wyoming. I have high expectations for these students as they venture into their careers as rural educators, and I eagerly await next year’s presentations.  Many thanks to our faculty Alison Mercier and Leslie Cook, the head of Professional Learning at Teton Science Schools for leading this important work!
Drone Education Network: April concluded the 2024 UW Drone Racing Season. Tim Slater, our Wyoming Excellence Chair in Science Education, led a team coordinating the state-wide UW Drone Education Network. Celebrating CTE and STEAM, recent drone racing educational events included March 23 at Eastern Wyoming College, April 13 at Casper College, and the WY Space Grant Consortium-sponsored statewide championship on April 20 at Northwest College. For the fourth year in a row, Slater and his team served as coordinators and judges for the Wyoming SkillsUSA Drone Precision Flight event in Casper on April 23. Kicking off the new season this summer, the UW Drone Education program will conduct week-long camps at the Wyoming Boys School in Worland, the Wyoming Girls School in Sheridan, and in Fremont #14. To learn more about the competitions, please see the program website at drone-challenges.org or contact Tim Slater at idrone@uwyo.edu.
College Meeting Next Monday (May 6): A reminder that the College Meeting will be held next Monday, May 6, from 12-1 PM in Coe Library 506. During the meeting, we will discuss the next round of revisions to the College of Education Reappointment, Tenure, and Promotion guidelines, and we will also celebrate the recipients of the College of Education faculty, staff, and graduate student awards. To conclude, we will announce new faculty that will be joining us in the fall and offer our best wishes to any faculty that might be departing at the end of spring.
Commencement on May 11: A reminder to faculty and staff helpers for both the graduate and undergraduate commencement ceremonies, please be sure to report to the Fieldhouse by 11:15 AM on Saturday, May 11. I am ready for round two of carrying the College of Education gonfalon and joining our students in celebrating their accomplishments and taking this next step in their lives.
I am also planning to attend the UW-Casper commencement ceremony on May 12 at 2:30 at the Best Western hotel in downtown Casper.  
Board of Trustees Meeting Next Week: A reminder that next week is a Board of Trustees regular meeting week, which is always a busy time, especially since Monday and Tuesday will also consist of budget hearings for different units and colleges across campus. I will be presenting on behalf of our college on May 6.  Kimbely Montez, our director of business operations, and Anaya Yates, our business manager will also be joining me at the budget hearing on May 6. If you are curious about the remaining schedule or agenda, you can follow this link: https://www.uwyo.edu/trustees/2024-meeting-agendas-materials-and-minutes/may-8-10-2024-meeting.html
Good luck to everyone next week with final examinations. I look forward to checking in again next Friday.
Dear colleagues,
I hope everyone has had another great week. I have been traveling around the state to witness and support the excellent work our partner school districts and organizations are conducting throughout Wyoming. Just yesterday, I had the pleasure of touring Worland High School alongside Christi Thompson, Assistant Dean of Student Success, and Colby Gull, Managing Director of the Trustees Education Initiative and Director of the Wyoming School-University Partnership. Attached is a picture from our visit, featuring the principal of Worland High School and one of their outstanding teachers:
On that note, I have a full weekly update to share with you all – and the update is overflowing with great news!
Jody Evans is Employee of the First Quarter: Jody Evans, College of Education Student Success Center Manager, was chosen as the 2024 employee of the first quarter! Amply deserving of this award, Jody expertly leads a critical center at the college to deliver advising and other services to our students to ensure their continued success. Congratulations, Jody!
Staff Recognition Day Awards: During the Staff Recognition Day event last week on April 16, other staff members Nicholas Jesse and Alex Rickert received the True Grit Award and the Unsung Hero Award respectively for their tireless and dedicated work the past year. Sarah Rundall was also recognized for her tenth anniversary at the University of Wyoming. Our staff play a critical role in the success of the college and university. Bravo on the excellent work!
Presidential Scholarly Achievement Awards: Three College of Education faculty were also celebrated for their achievement in research as recipients of the Presidential Scholarly Achievement Awards. Ali Bicer and Ana Houseal received Presidential Scholarly Achievement Awards for tenured faculty at associate or full professor ranks. Alison Mercier received President Scholarly Achievement Awards for early-career faculty. Congratulations to these exemplary faculty for their work in advancing research in education.
Fulbright Scholar Award: Lydiah Nganga has been selected as the Fulbright US Scholar for 2024-2025 for Kenya. This fellowship will allow Dr. Nganga to conduct research abroad next year. Excellent work advancing international research and development!
Third Wyoming Teacher Mentor Corps Cohort Announced: The third cohort of the Wyoming Teacher Mentor Corps has been announced, establishing this program even more prominently as it endeavors to improve teacher retention in Wyoming. This year’s cohort features 31 educators who come from a variety of content areas and backgrounds and will become well-equipped mentors to rising teachers in the state. You can learn more about the new cohort here: https://www.uwyo.edu/news/2024/04/uw-names-third-cohort-of-wyoming-teacher-mentor-corps.html
Rural Teacher Corps STEM Night: Last Thursday, April 18, the 16 members of the Wyoming Rural Teacher Corps hosted the Second Annual STEM Night for the K-5 community at Rock River School. Rural Teacher Corps members (elementary and secondary education majors) have been planning and rehearsing place-based STEM activities for the elementary students and families of Rock River School. As Rural Teacher Corps members have planned their activities, they have also worked with mentor teachers at Rock River to receive feedback on their plans and advice about working with families and running community events. STEM Night was a huge success! Not only did the Rock River community enjoy an engaging community event, but the Rural Teacher Corps members gained experience working with families, facilitating place-based education experiences, and engaging children in STEM inquiry. Led by Alison Mercier, a member of our faculty, the Wyoming Rural Teacher Corps is a joint venture between the College of Education and the Teton Science Schools. It is designed for education majors interested in pursuing teaching in rural communities after graduation.
Wyoming SkillsUSA Championships: Earlier this week, a group of us from the College of Education attended the Wyoming SkillsUSA Championships in Casper. The event featured a wide variety of skilled competitions, highlighting the talents of the top career and technical education students. It was inspiring to witness the dedication and enthusiasm of the students, educators, and industry leaders. Tim Slater, Wyoming Excellence Chair in Science Education, supported the event with his expertise in drone education. We also had the opportunity to observe welding and construction competitions at the Pathways Innovation Center and to engage with students and SkillsUSA leaders at the SkillsUSA Techspo event!
Wyoming School-University Partnership Governing Board Meeting: The Wyoming School-University Partnership also hosted the statewide Governing Board Meeting, also in Casper. During the meeting, different members of the College of Education were able to share updates about our important work with superintendents and other educational leaders from across Wyoming, and those leaders, in turn, provided feedback for future work and initiatives. This forum represents a fruitful opportunity for us to partner with schools and districts to better meet the needs of Wyoming students.
I wish everyone the very best as we quickly approach finals week, graduation, and the summer semester. I suspect more great news is on the way, so stay tuned for next week!  

Dear colleagues,


It has been another busy week in the College as we begin to make our way toward the end of the semester and celebrate the class of 2024. This week, I would like to showcase the beginning round of awards that members of our college have received, updates from some of our centers, and great news about keeping our programs accredited.


PIE Award Winners: The Promoting Intellectual Engagement (PIE) Award recognizes and honors instructors who inspire excitement, inquiry, and autonomy in first-year courses. This year, three faculty members from the School of Teacher Education were recipients: Joe Russo, Joe Schroer, and Maureen King. I thank and congratulate these excellent instructors on their hard work supporting our students. Well done!


Education Student Success Center Update: New Admitted Student Days will be held on April 15, April 22, & April 26. The ESSC will be using their time with students to show them a short presentation about the programs and College of Education and help them build their schedules and register for classes in the fall. If any faculty or staff want to come meet new incoming students and introduce themselves, please contact Jody Evans at jody.evans@uwyo.edu to get more information. Interested members of the College can meet future Education students in room ED 4 starting at 10:30.

Also, advising is in full swing and the ESSC has appointments scheduled into mid-May. This is a busy time of year for our advisors, and we are grateful as always for their kindness and support for our students as they plan their upcoming semester.


The ESSC also has extended an offer to a candidate for an Academic Advising Professional position.  


Finally, the ESSC team will be participating in “UnionFest” and a new event “Readiness Rally that the Student Success & Graduation office is putting together on May 3. Stay tuned for more information about how to volunteer.


Voices in the Field: During March, the Wyoming School-University Partnership, in collaboration with the High Altitude Pathways program, sponsored two separate “Voices in the Field” events.


The Big Horn County School District #1 event was held on March 12 and was coordinated by Sally Bernhisel, a Career Coordinator from the district. Members from the College for Every Student “Brilliant Pathways” team and community members from Big Horn County also attended the event.


The Albany County School District #1 event was held on March 28 at Rock River High School. This event was led by “Voices” founder and Whiting High School Principal, Malinda Garcia, and her team. They collaborated with Stacie Anfinson, the Rock River High School Principal. Employers and career professionals from Albany County were present, as were the ACSD1 leadership team.


The event connected more than 100 students to career pathways in their area.

To learn more about Voices in the Field, visit: https://bit.ly/3U2PFpu


High Altitude Pathways Career Fair and Transitions Workshops: Last Wednesday the High Altitude Pathways program and the Wyoming School-University Partnership were on the ground at Eastern Wyoming College to collaboratively host a career fair and post-secondary pathways workshops with partner schools in Goshen County.


Thanks to the help of colleagues from Goshen County Schools, EWC, Go Goshen, the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services - Torrington, and the community college career advisors, the event taught more than 140 students about different possible pathways in post-secondary education. Follow this link to view photos published in the Torrington Telegram: https://bit.ly/3xndWxk


Early Care and Education Center Update: The UW ECEC has enjoyed a special week, celebrating the work of children and teachers during the “Week of the Young Child”. This is an annual celebration sponsored by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), the world's largest early childhood education association. The purpose of the event is to focus public attention on the needs of young children and their families and to recognize the early childhood programs and services that meet those needs. NAEYC first established the Week of the Young Child in 1971, recognizing that the early childhood years (birth through age 8) lay the foundation for children's success in school and later life. This is a time to plan how we—as citizens of a community, of a state, and of a nation—will better meet the needs of all young children and their families. Each day has a special theme and activity, such as “Music Monday,” “Tasty Tuesday,” “Work-Together Wednesday,” “Artsy Thursday,” and “Family Fun Friday!” Check out some photos from the week:


Professional Teaching Standards Board Approval: The Professional Teaching Standards Board (PTSB), Wyoming’s teacher license granting agency, voted to approve the College of Education Secondary Social Studies, Secondary Sciences, Middle Level Sciences, and Modern Languages programs. These programs will retain state approval until their next scheduled review in the 2030-2031 academic year. Many thanks to our faculty members in these programs who worked hard on these reviews!


Science and Math Teaching Center Update: The folks at the Science Math and Teaching Center (SMTC) have also been very busy. Colleagues from Montana, California, and North Dakota, along with Martha Inouye, recently submitted a manuscript to a special issue of Education Sciences titled "Defining Rural: Rural Teachers' Perspectives and Experiences." They are also seeking applications from Wyoming teachers for participation in their STEM STRONG program during the 2024-2025 school year: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1xeu2y-wNzUPNRFyZ_US-fxoo8jc4YEU_/view?usp=sharing  


This month, they provided professional development to various Wyoming school districts and open-enrollment series across WY, MT, CA, and ND. Anna Payne is working on a contract for math support with WY Virtual Academy, and a grant proposal for an NIH SEPA award is being prepared to aid UW science lab groups in translating data for K-12 education. Ana Houseal and Martha also presented with high school teachers at NSTA Denver on creating aligned learning targets.


A Teacher Researcher Knowledge Exchange (TRKE) meeting in Jackson gathered UW scientists, K-12 teachers, non-formal educators, and community non-profits to plan the program's future. TRKE recruiting for Cohort 2 is ongoing, with application reviews starting on April 30 and continuing until the cohort is full. Wyoming educators can learn more about the program and how to apply here: https://www.canva.com/design/DAF9qKMgPLo/p2sbWyr4EnJSxcKIuOPf_w/view?utm_content=DAF9qKMgPLo&utm_campaign=designshare&utm_medium=link&utm_source=editor


As for students, Andrea Hayden recently defended her PhD, and four SMTC graduate students will soon defend their Plan B projects. You can learn more about their presentations and how to attend here: https://www.uwyo.edu/smtc/news-and-events/index.html




Thank you for reviewing a snapshot of updates from the College this week. Next week I will be out of the office to attend to family matters, so I will send my next round of weekly updates on Friday, April 26. I hope everyone has an enjoyable weekend.



Dear colleagues,


I am writing to you this week from Gillette, Wyoming, where I am visiting Campbell County School District to learn more about their programs. Gillette College, an important partner, also graciously welcomed me for a visit to their campus and their AREA 59: Gillette College Center for Innovation & Fabrication. I was also invited to tour the Eagle Butte Mine, and I learned more about the community’s increasing and critical need for trained workers in Career Technical Education.  Excellent work is happening in Campbell County, and I am grateful for the opportunity to visit and learn.


Here are a few other updates from the week that I would like to highlight:


UW AI Summit in Higher Education: William Cain, Mia Williams, and Lars Kotthoff organized the University of Wyoming’s first AI Summit on Higher Education on April 1, connecting their work with the Presidential Fellows Program to a wider audience. I also attended part of the summit and was enlightened by the experience. The keynote speech by Dr. Sidney D'Mello from the University of Colorado Boulder, titled "From Learning Optimization to Learner Flourishing: Reimagining AI in Education," showcased how AI could change education for the better. Dr. D'Mello discussed the work at the Institute for Student-AI Teaming (iSAT), focusing on using AI to enhance learning through teamwork and collaboration. This approach involves using AI in practical ways, like improving speech recognition and computer vision, to support students and teachers in creating more engaging learning experiences. The summit also included breakout sessions where participants discussed how to apply these AI advancements at the University of Wyoming, particularly in teaching, learning, and research. These discussions aimed to produce recommendations for future AI initiatives, emphasizing collaboration and innovation in education.


Implementation of AI in Higher Ed Writing Workshop: The work of one of William Cain's doctoral students – Carrie Kell – was featured in a news article at her home institution, Bryant University, highlighting her innovative approach to integrating AI in education. In her "Writing Workshop" course, part of Bryant's new general education program, Kell utilizes ChatGPT to enhance students' writing skills by encouraging them to engage with AI as a collaborative partner during the writing process. Kell's method emphasizes the constructive potential of generative AI, countering the prevalent narrative of its association with cheating and plagiarism. She educates students on ethical AI use, underscoring the importance of AI literacy as the technology's influence grows across various industries. Through specific prompt engineering and critical engagement with AI-generated feedback, Kell's students learn to leverage AI for tasks like improving thesis statements, argument strength, and organizational coherence. This approach not only prepares students for a final project that incorporates AI in multiple phases of writing but also prompts them to reflect critically on the value and limitations of AI assistance compared to traditional human peer review.  It is always heartwarming to see our graduate students thriving in their endeavors, including in their research efforts.

Click the link to read the article: https://news.bryant.edu/should-students-leverage-ai-writing-process-intro-course-explores-best-practices


Popular Culture Association National Conference: Anne Aydinian-Perry presented this week at the annual Popular Culture Association national conference this week. She explored how concepts presented in the popular TV show The Great British Baking Show could be used in secondary social studies methods to help students investigate exoticism, stereotypes, and multiple perspectives in world history classrooms. This research cultivates pedagogies that assist students in linking theoretical ideas to real-world examples in their daily lives.


You might have seen Anne’s research shared on the College of Education's social media. I wanted to take this opportunity to remind everyone that you can find more college news, announcements, and shoutouts than ever before on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, X, and YouTube. I will reshare the links below:


Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/WyoCollegeOfEd/


Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/uwyo_ed/?hl=en


LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/school/university-of-wyoming-college-of-education/


X: https://twitter.com/uwyocoed?lang=en


YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCCikM7A50XrUNhje7bEyfyg


New Cybersecurity and General Safety Training for UW Employees: A reminder that new mandatory training on cybersecurity and general safety will need to be completed by all UW employees by June 30, 2024. As many of you know, phishing emails impersonating university personnel (especially leadership) are becoming more prevalent, and the technology and techniques to make these emails more convincing is also improving. The cybersecurity training will teach employees how to recognize dangerous emails and other phishing attempts, and the general safety training will help employees understand best practices to prevent dangerous accidents in all workplace environments.


You can find the training by accessing “WyoCloud” from our WyoWeb homepage and clicking “Learning”: wyoweb.uwyo.edu  




It has been another busy week as we enjoy some spring-like weather. However, please stay warm and be safe on the roads this weekend as Wyoming reminds us that it is never too late for snow. I will see everyone next week.



Dear colleagues,


I hope everyone has had a wonderful week. Below are some updates as we move into April.


Campus Visits: This week, we welcomed two additional candidates for faculty positions on campus. Dr. George Hruby visited campus as a candidate for the Fisher Family Executive Director and Professor of the Literacy Research Center and Clinic, and Dr. Ling Zhang visited campus as a candidate for the Special Education Assistant Professor position. It was wonderful meeting with both candidates, and I am grateful to the faculty search chairs and committee members for their continued efforts to bring talented potential colleagues to campus. Thank you to everyone who supported these visits.


SMTC Director: To celebrate the fruits of our efforts in these faculty searches, I am pleased to announce that Dr. Jessica (Jessie) Marcolini has accepted our offer to become our next Science and Math Teaching Center (SMTC) Director. In her current role, Dr. Marcolini is the Assistant Director of the Whitaker Center for STEM Education and an Instructor at Florida Gulf Coast University. 


Ann Pickard and Dan Smith's Transformative Gifts: Please take a moment to explore UW Story featuring Ann Pickard and Dan Smith and their generous contributions to statewide literacy and first-generation students. We extend our deepest gratitude to Ann and Dan for their remarkable generosity.



Montessori School Visit: Dr. Joseph Schroer took his Exploring Teaching as a Career group to Laramie’s Montessori Charter School this week. They read and discussed the tenets of Montessori education, met the principal, and toured the school. Later, they observed classes, worked with students, and discussed Montessori education with teachers in the building. Dr. Schroer reports, “The students were very interested and asked lots of great questions. It was a very enlightening experience for them to see this ‘alternative’ education method.”


College Meeting Reminder: The College of Education Faculty and Staff Meeting will be held at noon on Monday, April 1, in Coe Library room 506. We will be discussing the draft of the revisions to the college Reappointment, Tenure, and Promotion guidelines document. Associate Dean Alan Buss and the rest of the review committee shared the draft earlier this week for faculty to review and comment on ahead of time and during the meeting. The primary goal is to bring the document in line with Uni Regs 2-1 through 2-10 and UW Standard Administrative Policy and Procedure (SAPP) 2-7, guided by several Pythian/white papers on this subject.  The 2024 College of Education Reappointment, Tenure, Fixed-term, Promotion, and Post-Tenure Guidelines will apply to all new faculty hired after the guidelines have been adopted by the college.


We will also celebrate this year’s completed Reappointment, Tenure, and Promotion cases, which I am also thrilled to share here:


  • Dr. Barbara Hickman has been promoted to Associate Professor with tenure
  • Dr. Jihyun Lee has been promoted to Associate Professor with tenure
  • Dr. Todd Reynolds has been promoted to Associate Professor with tenure
  • Dr. Joseph Schroer has been promoted to Associate Lecturer
  • Dr. Rochelle McCoy has been promoted to Associate Lecturer
  • Dr. Kimberly Gustafson has been reappointed with a 5-year fixed-term rolling contract


Congratulations to these outstanding faculty members for this important milestone in each of their careers.


College Awards: Please submit nominations for the College of Education Faculty, Staff, and Graduate Student Awards by Sunday, March 31. Jake Orr sent out an email reminder with more information about the awards yesterday morning (Thursday, March 27). Please submit your nominations to Jake at jorr2@uwyo.edu.




Thank you for reviewing this week’s updates. I wish everyone a wonderful weekend!



Dear colleagues,


Campus is buzzing with activity with our students returned refreshed from Spring Break. I hope all of you were able to take advantage of last week as we catch our second wind for the remainder of the spring 2024 semester. I am excited to highlight some college updates for all of you for this week.


Summit on Artificial Intelligence: The Summit on Artificial Intelligence will be held on April 1 from 10 AM to 4 PM in the Center and East Union Ballrooms. The keynote speaker will be Dr. Sidney K. D’Mello. Dr. D’Mello (PhD in Computer Science) is a Professor at the Institute of Cognitive Science and Department of Computer Science at the University of Colorado Boulder. He leads the NSF National Institute for Student-Agent Teaming (2020-2025), which aims to develop AI technologies to facilitate rich sociocollaborative learning experiences for all students. The keynote address is open to the public and does not require registration. If you would like to participate in the programming following the keynote please use the following link to register; 40 spaces are available and registration will be open until they are filled: https://uwyo.sjc1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_02ooIJ3XRKwVeke


Going On Now at the Literacy Research Center and Clinic (LRCC): The LRCC tutoring clinic is bustling with spring semester sessions underway, featuring 10 tutors and 13 students, a growth of four from last semester. Cindy Brock and Sara Pommarane are conducting literacy professional learning in Fremont County School District 6, working with teachers to craft lesson plans for vocabulary instruction. Meanwhile, Cindy and Leslie Rush also are supporting TCSD#1's literacy instructional leadership team, focusing on equitable learning systems. The LRCC staff, with Jayne Hellenberg's assistance, also recently conducted a literacy needs assessment in Big Horn County School District #4. Plans for the Fall Literacy Education Conference, supported by faculty, notably Jennifer Geringer, are in the works. Additionally, secondary-level professional learning initiatives in vocabulary instruction and writing are ongoing in Big Horn County and Sublette County, led by Leslie and Sara, and Leslie and Tood respectively. Finally, thanks to Sara's efforts, LRCC library books are now available for checkout! To schedule a visit or set up an account, please contact Sara at spommara@uwyo.edu. Lots of great work at the LRCC!


CAVE Visit: Joseph Schroer recently took his Human Development and Learning class to visit the CAVE (immersive virtual reality environment) as part of brain week to learn more about the parts and functions of the brain and what they mean for learning and development. I encourage other faculty to follow Joseph’s lead in exposing students to new technologies that will enhance the way we teach and learn. Learn more about UW’s CAVE and how it supports multidisciplinary research and teaching: https://www.uwyo.edu/ser/visualization-center/index.html


New Faculty: I am pleased to announce that Ty Tedmon-Jones and Brittney Phillips are the newest additions to our faculty next fall and will join us as Assistant Professors in our Counseling Program. Welcome Ty and Brittney! Here is a summary of completed faculty searches so far:


  • Counseling Program Assistant Professor: Ty Tedmon-Jones
  • Counseling Program Assistant Professor: Brittney Phillips
  • Special Education Assistant Lecturer: Jennifer Krause
  • Assistant Professor of Early Childhood Education: Amy Encinger
  • Special Education Assistant Professor: Tiffany Hunt
  • Elementary Literacy Education Assistant Lecturer: Stella Nowell
  • Secondary Mathematics Education Assistant Professor: Miriam Sanders
  • John P. Ellbogen Foundation Professor of Early Childhood Education (pending approval of rank and tenure by the Board of Trustees): Marisa Macy


Board of Trustees March Meeting: As you all know, the Board of Trustees March meeting is underway and will conclude today. There was very robust and deeply heartfelt discussion yesterday afternoon. You can find links to review previous broadcasts and watch the remainder of the meeting here: https://wyolinks.uwyo.edu/trusteesmar24/


I encourage everyone to tune in.


Faculty Senate Committee Search: The Faculty Senate is currently seeking a new member for the Academic Planning Committee. If you would like to volunteer for this important role, please reach out to Noah Engel Cartie at nengelca@uwyo.edu.




Thank you for reviewing this week’s highlights of important college and university news. I appreciate everyone's hard work in welcoming students back from Spring Break.  

I wish everyone a wonderful weekend.




Dear Colleagues,


Happy Friday and Happy Spring Break! I am sure everyone is grateful for a slower week to rest, catch up on important projects, and spend some time with family and friends. This week in Arizona, I was busy alongside our Senior College Development Officer, Tyler Spear, meeting with several important friends and supporters of the college. We shared the critical work we do and learned more about their lives and experiences. Then yesterday, I was heading to Jackson for the Wyoming's Future of Learning, a Celebration of Learning event, but a delay in my Phoenix flight prevented me from making it there. 


I am pleased to report that the rest of the college has been busy as we hit our mid-semester checkpoint. Below are my weekly updates.


Recent Publication: Colby Gull, Managing Director of the Trustees Education Initiative (TEI) and Director of the Wyoming School-University Partnership (WSUP), and Leslie Rush, our Wyoming Excellence Chair in Literacy Education, recently published an update for the Wyoming Teacher Mentor Corps (WTMC). The article focuses on findings from their work in the WTMC in developing four competencies to promote teacher persistence and success, and they honed in on the notion of work-life balance. Learn more about strategies teachers can use to promote professional well-being, and how mentors and school leadership can support them, here:



Education Student Feature: Larkin Williams, president of the FFA Wyoming and a student at the College of Education majoring in elementary and special education, was featured recently in the Wyoming Association for Career and Technical Education (WACTE) newsletter (attached). Larkin did a wonderful job representing the college at an event where Governor Gordon proclaimed February 2024 “CTE Month.” It's exciting to witness our student engaging in such crucial work across the state.


Staff Recognition Day Volunteers: There have been several announcements for the upcoming Staff Appreciation Day on April 16 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Arena Auditorium. The organizers are still seeking faculty volunteers to help out at the event and show appreciation to the folks who diligently support faculty for the remainder of the year. If you are available on this day, I ask you to consider volunteering by emailing Christina McDonald at cmcdon19@uwyo.edu.


Presidential Leadership Institute: Full-time staff who have worked at the university for more than two years and who are interested in strengthening their skills are leaders are encouraged to apply for the Presidential Leadership Institute (PLI). Applications are due on March 29, and monthly meetings will occur from May-September. Follow the link to learn more: https://www.uwyo.edu/president/initiatives/presidents-leadership-institute.html


Education Leadership Program Update: In February, Barbara Hickman and Margaret Hudson from the Educational Leadership Program, along with Colby Gull from TEI/WSUP, facilitated a mid-year meeting with the Wyoming Principal Mentor Certification Program (WPMCP) in central Wyoming. The WPMCP plays an important role in developing the next generation of school leaders. Current educational leaders participating in this program exemplify a commitment to advancing Wyoming’s education system. The WPMCP warmly thanks Fremont County School District #24 and Elementary Principal Andrea Gilbertson for hosting the meeting at their lovely school facility.


Last week, Barbara and Margaret also had the privilege of representing the Educational Leadership Program as part of an Ethics Panel at the Wyoming School Counseling Association (WYSCA) annual conference in Casper. This opportunity to collaborate with our colleagues in the Counseling Program fostered rich discussions and demonstrated the importance of interdisciplinary work to support university students and school counselors from around the state.


Finally, the Educational Leadership Program just completed the review process for admission to its four programs. As we welcome these promising leaders to our Principal Certification, Master of Arts, Superintendent Certification, and Doctor of Education programs, we reaffirm our commitment to developing exceptional educational leaders who will shape the future of education in our state and beyond. We are indebted to Tiffany LeGal for her tireless efforts throughout this process, ensuring a smooth transition for our incoming students.


AI in Wyoming: On Tuesday, March 5, William Cain and Mia Williams from the Learning, Design, and Technology (LDT) Program, together with President Seidel and representatives from the Presidential Fellows Program, as well as graduate and undergraduate student ambassadors, engaged in a series of presentations at the State Capitol in Cheyenne. This initiative illustrated the University of Wyoming's forward momentum in harnessing Artificial Intelligence (AI) for educational and scientific advancement. By sharing insights on the integration of AI technologies, they highlighted the institution's commitment to innovation and its ethical application in academia.


William and his graduate student Rebecca Austin delved into their research on fostering ethical thinking in AI within education. Concurrently, Mia and her students presented on the practical use of AI in teaching and learning. These discussions with legislators at the Capitol demonstrated the College of Education’s role as a leader in responsibly integrating AI into education.


Presidential Fellows AI Group: The Presidential Fellows AI Group invites you to attend and participate in the 2024 Summit on Artificial Intelligence in Higher Education to discuss and debate the potential for emerging AI technologies to transform educational practices. The summit will take place on April 1 at 10:00 a.m. in the Center and East Union Ballrooms. The keynote speaker will be Dr. Sidney K. D’Mello, who is a Professor at the Institute of Cognitive Science and Department of Computer Science at the University of Colorado Boulder. He leads the NSF National Institute for Student-Agent Teaming (2020-2025), which aims to develop AI technologies to facilitate rich socio-collaborative learning experiences for all students. The keynote address is open to the public and does not require registration. If you would like to participate in the programming following the keynote, please use the following link to register; 40 spaces are available and registration will be open until they are filled: https://uwyo.sjc1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_02ooIJ3XRKwVeke


Canva workshop: I also wanted to take a moment to promote a free learning opportunity for members of the university community: a Canva workshop presented by the Writing Center.Explore Canva's wide array of abilities, including PowerPoints, social media posts, infographics, documents, and much more!

  • Master the Basics: Learn the ins and outs of Canva, from its user-friendly interface to its vast array of tools.
  • Tips & Tricks: Explore the helpful functions that Canva offers, which may not be well-known.
  • Difference between Canva and Canva Pro: Uncover the minor differences between the free and premium version of the platform. 

You can join the workshop on March 20, from 5:15-6:00 p.m., in Coe Library Room 121. Follow this link to register: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdWCQC7CcBFwtXzeAT4HKCuLggC5iNttXA9jbrV8lNq5Vw4iQ/viewform  




Thank you for catching up with me on this week’s snapshot of important news from the college and university. I hope everyone has a good weekend and a fun, safe, and restful spring break. My next weekly updates will be on 3/22.



Dear colleagues,


Before I begin, I wanted to recognize that February was a very difficult month for the university. Three of our student-athletes passed away in a car accident last week: Charlie Clark, Carson Muir, and Luke Slabber. And, as many of you may have heard, another student passed away a few weeks ago: Sabrina Geller. It is overwhelming to think about these tragedies. We must support each other, especially those who are connected to these students. Amid hard times, I still wish to reflect on the important work that is happening within the college community.


College Meeting: Our first college meeting of the semester was held on Monday. We had a thoughtful discussion about updates on the Master Educator Competency Program (MECP) and our progress so far. Tyler Spear joined out meeting, and together, we discussed our college donors and expectations moving forward as they continue to fund important internal grants and awards that breathe life into our work and research. This was one of the most well-attended college meetings, with over 60 attendees, more than 50 in person and 10 via Zoom. I appreciate everyone’s fervent participation in leading the college a brighter future.


Early Childhood Education News: I was sent a remarkable article about early childhood education in Wyoming that I would like to share. WyoFile’s Katie Klingsporn reports on Kendra West, executive director of the Evanston Child Development Center. In reading about West’s groundbreaking work growing the center, advocating for better teacher working conditions, and improving the quality of care to more children than ever, I was reminded that education is everything. Kendra exemplifies the grassroots action needed to solve the shortage of professional early childcare and education in Wyoming: “West saw the needs firsthand. Instead of waiting for the entire ecosystem to improve, she focused on cultivating her own small corner of the lot.” Click here to read the article:



I would also like to highlight our own faculty’s important work on campus, as well as the Early Care and Education Center, to professionalize and cultivate early childhood educators who are ready to spark needed change in the state.


Website Update: As many of you have noticed, the college website (uwyo.edu/education) has undergone a major reworking. Thanks to the efforts of Cody Schofield, Chloe Palmer, and the team over at Institutional Marketing. The goal is not only to organize the resources on our website to be navigable and inviting to students and other visitors but also to standardize the website. I would also like to spotlight the renewed “Events Calendar.” If you know of an important happening in the college, you can report it via the website for Cody to add to our main calendar. Have a look: https://www.uwyo.edu/education/calendar.html


Education Summit: The annual Education Summit kicked off last night with the first-ever “mixer” event where faculty and participating graduate students came together and mingled before exciting presentations today, Friday, March 1. Although I was not able to attend last night, I was told that over 20 attended the mixer, including Associate Deans Alan Buss and Pete Moran and CLAD School Director Courtney McKim. 


I am looking forward to our lineup of presentations today! Attached is the updated schedule, and I look forward to seeing everyone.

Faculty Search Update: Since last week, I am pleased to announce that Amy Encinger has accepted the offer for the Assistant Professor of Early Childhood Education. This is another exciting addition to our faculty, and I look forward to announcing future acceptances in the coming weeks.



That concludes my updates from this week. As we move into March, perhaps pulling our coats and scarves in closer to stay warm, I remind everyone that our work makes a huge difference. As we mourn lost students, I am grateful for our community. I wish everyone a restorative weekend.




Dear colleagues,


I hope everyone had another productive week. Despite some travel hiccups, I am writing to you from San Francisco, where I am attending the CASE Development for Deans and Academic Leaders Training and Conference. This program offers academic leaders practical fundraising information, opportunities for collaborative technique sharing, fresh development perspectives, and networking opportunities to enhance fundraising practices for their institutions. Alongside Tyler Spear and other colleagues from UW, I am learning a lot.

Associate Deans Moran and Buss have also been on the road, attending 'Celebrations of Learning' events in Albany County and Laramie County to learn more from our district partners about what they have gained from their participation in the Governor’s RIDE initiative. It has been another busy week all around, come snow or shine!

Here are my updates as we move into the last week of February:


Faculty Searches: With all faculty search campus visits concluded, we are excited to begin announcing job offers that have been extended and accepted for various positions – a testament to everyone's hard work, especially that of all search committee members and chairs. Marisa Macy has accepted the position of John P. Ellbogen Foundation Professor of Early Childhood Education, pending approval for her rank and tenure. Stella Nowell has accepted the position of Elementary Literacy Education Assistant Lecturer. Jenni Krause has accepted the Special Education Assistant Lecturer position, and Tiffany Hunt has accepted the Special Education Assistant Professor position. Their arrival marks an exciting chapter for us, and we can’t wait to see the contributions they will make.  More announcements on the additional positions are on the way in the next couple of weeks!


College Meeting: Our college-wide meeting will be held next Monday, February 26, from 12-1 PM in Coe Library room 506. As usual, in-person attendance is highly encouraged. If you wish to receive the Zoom link, please reach out to your school director. We will be discussing college initiatives, awards, and offer time for a general discussion.


Wallop Civic Engagement Program Summer Workshop: The Wallop Civic Engagement Program Team in partnership with the Wyoming School-University Partnership is pleased to host a virtual professional development workshop on Thursday, June 13th for 20 Wyoming social studies and English language arts teachers.


Apply by April 15th or contact the Wallop Civic Engagement Program for more information.


Follow this link to apply:



UW Staff Awards: An announcement from Staff Senate was recently disseminated that highlights various staff awards. Let's remember that our college simply cannot function without the dedication, hard work, and expertise of our staff members. Their contributions are the backbone of our success and daily operations. I encourage everyone in the College to take this opportunity to recognize and nominate our outstanding staff for these awards, as a token of our appreciation and acknowledgment of their indispensable role in our college.


Presidential Excellence Award

$1000 and a plaque

Given by the UW President, this award recognizes a UW staff member who exemplifies excellence and demonstrates commitment to achieving the university’s strategic plan.



All-Star Team Award 2024

$2000 per team and a plaque for each team member

This award honors a team of two to five UW Staff members who have worked together as a team to complete a project; create a new program or process; or facilitate a significant transition to a current project, program, or process as the University.  Recipients of this award will be staff members who are notable for their collaborative skills and perseverance to complete a sizeable task or accomplish a long-term goal.


Custodian of the Year 2024

$1000 and a plaque

This award honors one current UW staff member who exemplifies outstanding work ethic and professional competence in custodial services from Athletics, Operations, Wyoming Union, or Residence Live and Dining Services.



E.G. Meyer Family Award 2024

$1000 and a plaque

This long-standing staff award on campus honors two current UW Staff Members (one non-exempt and one exempt_ who show initiative, helpfulness, dependability and a positive and cheerful demeanor.



Jodi K. Humphrey Inspirational Award 2024

$1000 and a plaque

This award was established in 1995 in memory of long-time Department of Residence Life and Dining Services employee Joleen "Jodi" K. Humphrey, and honors two current UW Staff member who inspires people to do their best, remains positive under stressful conditions, serves as a positive role model to others, shows eagerness toward the job, displays a cheerful attitude toward customers, and motivates self and others.


Off-Campus Award 2024

$1000 and a plaque

This award honors two staff members who work off the main UW campus and display an outstanding attitude toward furthering the mission and goals of UW off-campus.


Pete K Simpson Golden Gloves 2024

Dated plaque

This award was founded in honor of outstanding staff/faculty member Pete Simpson and recognizes one current Staff Senate member who shows outstanding participation on their Staff Senate committee, participation at full Staff Senate meetings and strong representation to constituents.



Skilled Trades Award 2024

$1000 and a plaque

This award honors one current UW staff member who exemplifies outstanding work ethic and professional competence in the skilled trades or in equipment, maintenance, or grounds positions.



Supervisor of the Year Award 2024

Season tickets to various campus events and a plaque

This award honors one UW employee who is an outstanding supervisor to one or more classified staff members.



True Grit Award 2024

$1000 and a plaque

This award honors two current, full-time benefited UW staff members who are noted for their flexibility, consistency, vision, grit and/or problem-solving skills.



Unsung Hero Award 2024

$1000 and a plaque

This award honors four UW staff members for their contributions above and beyond their position without fanfare or a desire for praise.



2024 Employee of the 1st Quarter


Nominations for Employee of the 1st Quarter are due Friday, March 1st @ 5pm.




Cheers to another productive week! I wish everyone a nice weekend and look forward to seeing everyone on Monday.




Dear colleagues,


Good morning, and happy Friday! I hope everyone had a productive and enjoyable week. Here are some updates and announcements: 


Dean's Office: Colby and I provided the Trustees Education Initiatives updates to the State Board of Education in Cheyenne yesterday. Associate Dean Moran has also been traveling to attend Celebration of Learning events connected to the Wyoming’s Future of Learning partnership in Cody and Meeteetse. In addition, we have been welcoming another round of faculty finalist visits. Many thanks to your efforts and participation.


Search Updates: This week, we hosted another SMTC Director finalist and three counseling assistant professor finalists on campus. I am pleased that more offers are being extended for previously concluded searches, and I look forward to seeing reports on these last searches before finalizing another final round of offers. I appreciate your dedication and hard work in this busy semester filled with collaboration and collective efforts in searching for new colleagues.


School of Computing Speaker and Visiting Candidate: The School of Computing is welcoming a speaker next Monday, Dr. Chad Lane, who will present on "Applying AI & Interactive Technology to Educational Problems." Given the interdisciplinary nature of the talk and its relevance to our college, I encourage everyone to attend. His talk will be in Engineering 2102 at 10:30-11:30 AM. I am attaching the flyer (note that the "PM" should say "AM.")


On Tuesday, in Engineering 2105 from 9:30-10:30 AM, Ali Raza, a finalist for a possible joint position in the School of Computing and the College of Education, will be delivering his public presentation. He will present on "Using Visual Learning Analytics and Evidence-Based Instruction to Support Students' Experience in STEM Classrooms." I hope everyone will attend this presentation as well. This could be an exciting partnership between the College of Education and the School of Computing. Please find the flyer attached. 


College of Education in the News: The college was recently covered by WPR's rural and tribal reporter Hannah Habermann for the new CTE bridge course that introduces students to a career in CTE teaching. The course has attracted a diverse array of students, including veterans, community college students (and instructors), and industry professionals as well as paraprofessionals from school districts. https://www.wyomingpublicmedia.org/wyoming-economy/2024-02-13/new-course-partners-with-community-colleges-to-address-shortage-of-career-and-tech-ed-teachers


Time Management Tips from Dr. Douglas Reeves: A longstanding friend and supporter of the college, Dr. Douglas Reeves, recently created a short video on time management that I hope you will find useful. His video covers his tried-and-true methods such as “total capture,” “daily prioritized task lists,” “notes during the day,” and “calendar time blocks.” These concepts are easy to implement and can help you manage your time more effectively. As we push forward with the semester and juggle multiple tasks and projects, I hope you will consider these tips and how they can improve your time management habits. You can watch the video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=65Nsxf948qE


Student Success Center Updates: Sarah Rundall at the Student Success Center is excited to announce practicum placement updates for spring:

173 students were placed in the various practica:

  • EDST 1200 | Practicum 1: 20 students with multiple placements across three Albany county schools, rotating each week for 7 weeks.
  • EDST 2200 | Practicum 2: 22 students for a total of 25 placements.
  • EDST 3101 | Practicum 3: 107 students placed across Wyoming (Albany #1, Campbell #1, Laramie #1, Laramie #2, Natrona #1, Platte #2, Sweetwater #2, Uinta #4, & Weston #1) along with placements in Big Timber, MT, Cliché, CO, Fairfax, VA, and Fort Collins, CO.
  • EDEC 4209 | Early Literacy Methods: 54 students placed.

Nice work, Sarah! Our students are doing great work far and wide, and we appreciate your expert coordination. 


Also, a reminder that March 23 is Discovery Days, and the college could use a few volunteers to meet future students and their parents. Please reach out to Jody Evans (jody.evans@uwyo.edu) if you would like to sign up.


Finally, the official start date for the Student Success Center's new Office Associate, Kelsie Tarver, is Monday, February 26.   Welcome, Kelsis!


New School of Teacher Education Office Associate: In the past few weeks, many of you have probably seen several emails from her. I am glad to announce that Alyssa Janzen has joined Alexis Ontiveroz as one of the STE Office Associates. I am grateful for her additional support and hope everyone continues to make her feel welcome.




Thanks for reviewing this week's updates. I will see everyone next Monday, and I wish you all a good weekend. 




Dear colleagues,


Happy Friday once more! I am writing to you this week from San Diego, California. My reprieve from Wyoming’s snowstorms appears to be San Diego’s rainstorms, but I have been staying dry. I am here for the University of Wyoming Foundation Board Meeting, alongside other fellow deans and UW colleagues. Tyler Spear and I have also taken the opportunity to meet with some of the college's most faithful and appreciated supporters and alumni in the area. Even while traveling, I am thrilled to report that the news from the college never stops. Below are a few updates.


Celebrations of Learning: Associate Deans Buss and Moran have also hit the road to attend continued “Celebrations of Learning” across the state in Douglas, Kemmerer, Upton, and, next week, Cody and Meeteetse. These events not only allow RIDE pilot school districts to reflect on their work to bolster student-centered learning initiatives but also provide the Associate Deans with a good chance to connect with principals and superintendents and learn more about how we can continue to meet the educational needs of the state here at the college. I know many of you are also active across the state, and I am grateful for our robust network. Every handshake, every conversation, and every smile build crucial relationships as we continue to innovate how we train new generations of educators, researchers, counselors, and administrators.


Practicum Visits: On that note, Elizabeth McMahan and Anna Payne recently visited multiple Wyoming school districts. They met with superintendents and principals, visited schools, and checked in with student teachers, method practicum students, and mentors. Nice work!


Trustees’ Scholars Award Interviews: Alongside other Education Student Success Center (ESSC) members last week, Elizabeth McMahan attended interviews with finalists for the Trustees’ Scholars Awards, UW’s most prestigious full-ride scholarship program for Wyoming’s most excellent high school students. Students who qualify for this award typically have GPAs of 3.95 or higher and average ACT composite scores of 32 out of 36, so it is good to hear that the College of Education was able to build early relationships with some future education majors who will likely excel in their programs. Learn more about the scholarship here: https://www.uwyo.edu/sfa/scholarships/residents/trustees.html


UWyo Magazine Winter Edition: If you have not seen it, the winter edition of the UWyo magazine is available to read online (link below). Our very own Nikki Baldwin was featured for her groundbreaking work under the WYECON (Wyoming Early Childhood Outreach Network) initiative (page 24). On page 26, you will also notice our unit, the Science and Math Teaching Center, was highlighted for its professional development across the state and four in-house master’s programs. Next to the feature, you will also see the Malcolm Wallop Civic Engagement Program and the UW Wallop K-12 Curriculum Project, a bank of various lessons and multimedia lessons available to Wyoming social studies and English language arts teachers, developed in partnership between A&S and Education.




Faculty Searches and Visits: Next week we will be welcoming more finalists for the two Counselor Education faculty positions and the SMTC Director position, and I am looking forward to it. As we approach the conclusion of these visits, we are preparing to announce additional offers for several positions: the Fisher Family LRCC Executive Director/Professor, the Special Education Lecturer and Assistant Professors, the Early Childhood Education Assistant Professor, and the Literacy Lecturer. It feels like the College of Education is gilding itself with a new round of excellent scholars, ready to meet the next generation of future educators and counselors.




This concludes my updates for this week. Did you know that you can now view an archive of my weekly updates from previous weeks? Check out the updated Office of the Dean webpage here: https://www.uwyo.edu/education/deans-office/office-of-the-dean/index.html


As always, I am looking forward to seeing everyone next Monday. I will be back with more news next Friday.  




Dear colleagues,


Happy Groundhog’s Day! Can everyone believe it is already February? I hope everyone had a productive week. Here are my updates and reminders for this week.


University Awards: Numerous deadlines for awards across campus are approaching, and I would like to highlight a few of them and encourage faculty and staff, in consultation with their school directors, to consider nominating exemplary members of our college.


Tobin Memorial and Rosemarie Martha Spitaleri Awards, which recognize outstanding undergraduate students. The initial nomination only requires a supporting letter be sent to studentaffairs@uwyo.edu.


There are also several graduate student and faculty awards:


Ellbogen Outstanding Graduate Assistant Teaching Award


Distinguished Graduate Faculty Mentor


Mid-Career Graduate Faculty Mentor


Early-Career Graduate Faculty Mentor


Outstanding Master’s Thesis


Outstanding Dissertation


I know our college has several outstanding graduate students and faculty mentors who would be excellent candidates for these awards. You can find all the information about the graduate student and faculty awards at this link: https://www.uwyo.edu/uwgrad/faculty-staff/award-information.html


Finally, there are several faculty awards to keep on your radar as you think about how to celebrate your favorite faculty member:


John P. Ellbogen Meritorious Classroom Teaching Award


George Duke Humphrey Distinguished Faculty Award


Hollon Family Award for Online Teaching Excellence


John P. Ellbogen Lifetime Teaching Award


“Laramigo” Award for Community Engagement

Follow this link to view the call for applications from the Office of Academic Affairs: https://www.uwyo.edu/acadaffairs/_files/docs/call-for-faculty-awards-2024.pdf


If you know of someone who would be perfect for one of these awards, please speak with your school director to learn more about required materials for nominations.


College Awards: I also wanted to let everyone know that the Associate Deans will soon be releasing calls for the internal College of Education awards. Stay tuned for more information. You can review recipients for last year by following this link: https://www.facebook.com/photo/?fbid=799716312160195&set=a.547130634085432


College of Education Represented at Celebration of Research Excellence Event: Mark Perkins, our Assistant Dean of Assessment, Data, and Accreditation and Assistant Professor, was honored last week at the inaugural Celebration of Research Excellence, hosted by the University of Wyoming Research and Economic Development Division. The event celebrated research conducted by some of UW's finest scholars and researchers who contributed to more than $150 million in research expenditures last year: a record for the university. Brilliant work, Mark!


Student Success Center Update: Our Student Success Center is pleased to announce the hire of a new office associate starting February 8, pending a written offer. Levi and Matt, our academic outstanding advisors, also attended the Trustees’ Scholars Award Interview Day and Resource Fair on January 26 and met some exciting education majors. This is one of UW’s most prestigious scholarships, and it is always exciting to see Wyoming’s most elite high school graduates considering our programs. The next Trustees Scholars Award Interview Day will be held today


Phishing Reminder: On Wednesday, Alex sent out an email announcing that a copycat account was impersonating me to get College of Education faculty and staff to send out their personal information. I wanted to remind our community of the dangers of phishing. Anyone could create an email address and pretend to be any one of us, using our signature lines or photos to seem more convincing. Please stay vigilant, especially if emails include the “This message was sent from a non-UWYO address” warning banner. Learn more about phishing and other malicious emails to UW here: https://www.uwyo.edu/infotech/phishing/


Faculty Searches: I am delighted to announce that Miriam Sanders has officially accepted our verbal offer for the position of Assistant Professor in Secondary Mathematics Education. Miriam is currently preparing to defend her dissertation at Texas A & M University in May. Additionally, I am pleased to inform you that Dr. Marisa Macy, currently Cille and Ron Williams Chair of Early Childhood Education at the University of Nebraska, Kearney, has accepted a verbal offer for the John P. Ellbogen Foundation Early Childhood Education Professor position. Dr. Macy's rank and tenure are currently in the review process and will undergo review by the UW Board of Trustees in March.

We also had the pleasure of conducting campus visits for candidates applying for the positions of Assistant Professor and Lecturer in Special Education, as well as candidates for the role of Director at the Science Math and Teaching Center. It was a wonderful opportunity to meet these candidates in person, and we truly appreciate everyone's active involvement in making them feel welcome. We will keep everyone updated on any developments in these ongoing searches, and once again, we thank all of you for your continued dedication in welcoming potential future colleagues. There will be a few more weeks of candidate visits for other faculty searches, and we are looking forward to sharing concrete updates for all the available positions in the near future.

Online Programs: As reported in the Provost’s weekly newsletter, Vice Provost Matt Griswold and team have been working across campus to increase the availability of fully online bachelor’s degree programs for online education students. A new webpage highlighting available online degrees was published here: https://www.uwyo.edu/online/programs/bachelor.html. You will note that many of our programs were featured, and I am proud that our college continues to stay at the forefront of distance modalities. This is especially important in a spread-out state like Wyoming, and I encourage the continued innovation of our online offerings. Great work, everyone!




Next week, Associate Dean Moran will travel to Kemmerer, while Associate Dean Buss will head to Douglas. They will both attend the Celebration of Learning, a component of Wyoming's Future of Learning Partnership Initiative, which focuses on student-centered learning. Meanwhile, I will be traveling to San Diego for the UW Foundation Board meeting. During this trip, I will also take the opportunity to visit and express gratitude to our college's generous supporters.

It was an energetic week, and I am looking forward to the rest of the semester. Here’s to more good news to share. On that note, if you have news to share with the college, please send me an email. I wish everyone a fun and safe weekend!



Dear colleagues, 


We have made it through the second week of the semester! I hope everyone retains momentum this week as we continue forward with solidified classes, filled-up travel schedules, and fresh ideas for the semester. Before we know it, we will be seeing each other at the spring 2024 graduation ceremony! 


Meanwhile, here are my updates for this week: 


Faculty Searches Update: It has been another lively week of faculty search finalist visits to campus. We saw candidates for the Fisher Family LRCC Director and Associate/Professor position, the Literacy Lecturer position, and the Early Childhood Education Assistant Professor position. Today, our very own Tiffany Hunt will kick off visits for the Special Education Assistant Professor position, and the candidate visits will continue into next week. Here are our other upcoming visits: 


1. Science Math and Teaching Center Director  

2. Special Education Assistant Lecturer  

3. Two Counseling Assistant Professors 


Thank you to everyone for keeping your calendars flexible with so many other plates spinning. It will all be worth it next fall when we welcome our new colleagues! 


New Project Coordinator in the Dean’s Office: We nearly forgot to announce this because he has been such a beloved presence in the college, but Jake Orr returned to the College of Education this month as a Project Coordinator in the Dean’s Office. He will be supporting our associate deans, Alan Buss and Pete Moran, as well as serving as the first point of contact for visitors to the dean’s office. All of us are thrilled to have him back, and hope everyone will stop by to welcome him on this new role. 


WTMC New Cohort Application Reminder: The Wyoming Teacher Mentor Corps (WTMC) will welcome its third cohort of future teacher mentors this spring. A spring retreat has been tentatively planned on March 19-21, 2024, followed by a 3-day summer institute in late June. This is a great opportunity for teachers across the state to build leadership skills to support emerging teachers in their district. Today is the deadline for cohort 3 nominations. 



Board of Trustees Meeting: As many of you know, two topics related to the College of Education were on the agenda for this month’s Board of Trustees (BoT) regular meeting: an update from the Trustees Education Initiative (TEI) as well as an update on the Master Educator Competency Program (MECP). I appreciate everyone who came to support the college during the CoE presentations yesterday. You can learn more about the meeting, as well as future meetings, by checking out the Board of Trustees webpage: https://www.uwyo.edu/trustees/ 


Dr. Douglas Reeves Meet & Greet: An important and longstanding supporter of the college, Dr. Douglas Reeves is visiting Laramie to support the college during this month’s BoT meeting. A known champion of early career faculty and graduate students , Dr. Reeves will be meeting with some junior faculty this morning in ED 115 from 10:00-11:00 AM. Faculty and graduate students can also drop by if they have a chance. 


Education Summit: You have probably heard about the Education Summit on March 1, 2024. This annual event is an excellent opportunity for students and faculty to present ongoing research, rehearse presentations to be shared at national/international conferences, gather insight from peers and mentors, and learn about innovations in education. Proposals are due next Friday, February 2. 

You can apply here: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfC-RZHa_hZ2ocvQNb9HVohyhjpNlFEC2-nMdiA2dH0lCfDag/viewform




This concludes my second week of updates from 2024. So far, it is turning out to be a strong semester for our faculty, staff, and students. If any of you have any news or events to share, I invite you to send them my way. With that, please keep up the great work! 




Dear colleagues,


Welcome back to campus! I hope your first week of the spring semester has gotten off to an excellent start. As we gear up for another exciting, busy, and productive semester, I would like to express my gratitude for your dedication to teaching, research, and service in support of our students and delivering services that align with the land-grant mission of our college. 

I am looking forward to continue providing weekly updates to offer a snapshot of some of our activities and achievements. Here are my updates for this week: 

College Meetings: The dean’s office would like to announce that college-wide meetings will start in February due to the busy nature of January with numerous campus visits for faculty search finalists. Here are the dates (with calendar invitations to come soon): 


  • Monday, February 26, from 12-1 PM 
  • Monday, March 25, from 12-1 PM 
  • Monday, April 29, from 12-1 PM 

As always, faculty and staff are highly encouraged to make every effort to attend these meetings in person to better cultivate college-wide discussion and collaboration.


Faculty Searches: Speaking of faculty searches, many of you know that we have been in the thick of campus visits and public presentations. I appreciate everyone’s collaboration and collegiality in participating in tours, public presentations, and other activities to show these candidates what our college is all about. 


I am pleased to announce that we are nearing the conclusion of the John P. Ellbogen Foundation Associate Professor of Early Childhood Education and the Secondary Mathematics Education Assistant Professor searches. We are in the middle of college visits for the Early Childhood Education Assistant Professor and the Special Education Assistant Professor searches.   


Visits for the Fisher Family Executive Director/Professor of the Literacy Research Center & Clinic, the Science and Math Teaching Center Director, the Elementary Literacy Education Assistant Lecturer, the Special Education Assistant Lecturer, and the two Counseling Assistant Professor searches are currently being planned, and schedules will be sent to your inboxes soon. 


Annual Performance Evaluations (Staff) and Annual Reviews (Faculty): Please be reminded that faculty should have submitted their annual review packets in WyoFolio by Monday, January 15. If you have any questions or need assistance, you can reach out to the College Affairs Coordinator (arickert@uwyo.edu), as well as the directors of CLAD (cmkim3@uwyo.edu) and STE (Scott@uwyo.edu). These reviews will be forwarded to the respective directors for evaluation and then to me for the final assessment. The deadline for reviews to be forwarded to the Office of Academic Affairs is March 17. 


All staff are expected to complete their annual performance evaluations with their supervisors by March 31. Staff will have seen announcements about their process from the HR central email, and can review the process by clicking here.  


ECEC Update: I always value receiving updates from the Early Care and Education Center (ECEC). The ECEC holds accreditation from the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) and is actively preparing for its upcoming renewal visit to secure another 5-year accreditation. 


The administration, teachers, and staff have been diligently reviewing standards, updating portfolios, and engaging in discussions on best practices in their field. In November, the lead teaching team had the opportunity to attend the annual NAEYC conference in Nashville, TN, alongside nearly 30,000 early childhood educators. During the conference, they participated in diverse sessions geared toward enhancing their knowledge of innovative practices and the latest research in the field. 


I am sure that this trip has sparked important discussions and will contribute significantly to their preparations for the next accreditation cycle. Best of luck to the ECEC!


Winter Commencement:  It was truly wonderful to see many CoE graduate and undergraduate students take their proud walk across the stage during the winter commencement ceremony last month. I would like to extend a special recognition and sincere appreciation to Britany Kathan, our dedicated commencement coordinator for the College of Education, whose commitment and hard work made the commencement a remarkable success. 


HAP and WRTC: The Wyoming Rural Teacher Corps and the High Altitude Pathways Program were recently featured in the Laramie Boomerang for their outstanding efforts in supporting high school students and other individuals across Wyoming in their college and career preparation journey and in building a community of rural educators across the state. These initiatives are instrumental in improving teacher success and retention, especially in our sparsely populated communities. It's truly inspiring to see these initiatives receive the recognition they deserve, as they play a vital role in bolstering Wyoming's education system, workforce, and, ultimately, the economic future of our state. Congratulations on the well-deserved recognition! 


Food Donations: The College of Education fun committee spearheaded a food drive that raised 97 pounds of food and goods to be donated to UW’s food pantry located in Knight Hall. This resource is available to food-insecure students and employees at the university, which ultimately increases the chances of program completion and access to better employment opportunities. We were thrilled to be able to offer support to this important campus resource and look forward to doing even better next time! 


While it was nice to have some time to regroup over the winter closure, I am glad to be back in the saddle and look forward to new opportunities, challenges, and lessons ahead this year. 


I look forward to checking in with all of you next week. Until then, please keep up the good work!  






Other Resources 


  • faculty and staff resources

    Faculty/Staff Resources

    Learn more about the College's bylaws, comittees, and more. 

    Faculty/Staff Resources

  • accreditation


    Learn more about the College's acreditation through AAQEP. 


  • directory


    Learn more about the College's faculty and staff.







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