Education Department Electronic Teaching Portfolios
All Albion College education students construct an electronic portfolio demonstrating their professional knowledge, skills, and growth. We invite you to visit their portfolios by following the link:
Jason Moritz was born in Davenport, Iowa, and attended K-12 public schools in nearby Bettendorf until moving to the Chicago area in 1988 to attend Northwestern University (BA, economics and geography, 1992). After returning to the Quad Cities to work as an economic development planner at the Bi-State Regional Commission in Rock Island, Illinois, he returned to school at the University of Iowa (MA, geography, and secondary social studies teaching certification, 1998). While at Iowa, he co-wrote an article with Dr. Paul Robbins entitled "Resourceful People and People's Resources: Teaching the Cultural Ecology of South Asia" published in the Fall 1999 issue of Education About Asia. He was also a graduate teaching assistant for contemporary environmental issues and human geography courses.
Jason moved to Los Angeles in 1998 and for two years taught 7th grade world history and geography at Audubon Middle School in the Crenshaw District. He left middle school teaching to attend UCLA's Graduate School of Education and Information Studies (MLIS, information studies, 2002). After graduating from UCLA, he worked as an archivist for both Universal Studios and DreamWorks SKG and as a substitute reference librarian at the Glendale (California) Public Library. He also taught physical geography courses at Los Angeles City and Pierce Colleges. Jason and his wife Melanie moved to Jackson, Michigan, in the summer of 2007. They enjoy traveling, reading, gardening, and watching movies together.
Kyle Henry, '12: Student-teaching across the Atlantic
Kyle Henry, ’12
Gaining an international classroom perspective
Minor: Political Science
Shurmur Center for Teacher Development, Ford Institute for Leadership in Public Policy and Service, Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity, Sigma Tau Delta honorary English fraternity, Order of Omega, Detroit Free Press intern
"For a young man who had never left the country before, learning about the differences in educational systems between the United States and France was certainly an incentive to go abroad. Not only did I immerse myself in the learning approaches to French adolescents and the educational culture, I learned a lot about how I perceive myself as a secondary teacher in the United States. Using my experiences from France as well as those from Albion, I have become more confident in my own approaches to helping young students grow as free-thinking individuals."
Education Department Student Showcase: Carmen Feeny, Spring 2005
Carmen Feeny ('06) recently visited an elementary school in Rarotonga, Cook Islands to study teaching and learning on a small island. Her findings were presented at the Elkin Isaac Honors Symposium.
Carmen teaching students at Te Uki Ou Elementary School, Rarotonga, Cook Islands about The Legend of Sleeping Bear, an old Ojibwa folk tale
Carmen (top left), her host teacher, and her students from Te Uki Ou.
- Certification Program: Administer the interdisciplinary elementary, secondary, and K-12 certification programs for undergraduates in Teacher Education. Albion College's teacher candidates have a 100% pass-rate on the Michigan Test for Teacher Certification.
- Technology Studies: Enhance Ferguson Center in articulating the appropriate role for I.T. in improving teaching and learning. Develop research pilot projects that explore the effective use of information technology in teaching and learning. Establish an educational freeware site. Offer a Symposium or other structured study on the impact of computers on teaching and learning.
- Partnering with graduate schools who have research grants that explore educational issues in order to expand research opportunities for teacher candidates.
- Student Scholarship, Research, and Travel: Support student research agendas and send students to state educational meetings and conferences. Instill within teacher candidates the value of scholarship and professional development and inspire them to do research. A special focus for the research should be the distinctive elements of education in the Albion community.
- Endowed Lectureship: Host an EdI week on campus in collaboration with the Elkin Isaac Symposium, bringing in one major public "keynote" speaker, who would also spend a few days on campus and provide seminars for faculty, visit classes, and have conversations with teacher candidates on public policy issues and on current research initiatives in K-12 teaching.
- Alumni Outreach/Alumni Expert-in-Residence: Alumni teachers speak to students from a practical viewpoint, visit campus, give presentations, and interact with AC students on an informal basis. Create a newsletter or web site focused on EdI alumni.
- Summer Programs: Offer superb program for summer camps for elementary and secondary students. Provide teacher candidates with appropriate housing to enable them to work with these camps.
- Summer seminars and programs: Revive the training program for High School AP Class teachers and allow EdI students to be mentored by these master teachers.
- Research skills seminar will be offered to teacher candidates and for current teachers in the Albion area and throughout Calhoun County.
- Round Table Discussions: EdI will coordinate campus-wide resources, speakers, common reading experience texts, that are related to Education and sponsor round table discussions.
Carol Gnich is the Placement Coordinator in the Education Department, a position she has held since retiring from the Albion Public Schools in 2002 after 32 years of teaching at the elementary level. Before coming to Albion she taught in Seattle, Washington, at Clark Air Force Base in the Philippines, and in Lincoln Park, Michigan.
In the Education Department Carol has also served as a supervisor of student teachers and as an adjunct instructor. She received her BA in Elementary Education and her MA in Elementary Education from the University of Michigan.
Director, Ferguson Center for Technology-Aided Instruction & Learning
Guy Cox is Director of the Ferguson Center for Technology-Aided Teaching & Learning. Before coming to Albion College he was a member of the Computer Engineering Department at University of California Santa Cruz teaching and working in the areas of Software Engineering and Engineering Ethics. Before working with several high tech companies in Silicon Valley, he taught for nine years in the California Public Schools. However, he still primarily identifies himself as an anthropologist having studied educational anthropology at the Graduate School of Education, University of California Berkeley.
Guy's current research is focused on how children's technological experiences contribute, detract, and help shape their social, personal, and moral perspectives. He is a member of the American Anthropology Association and the American Educational Research Association.
Impact on Students
- Teacher candidates will have a greater awareness of the teaching profession as an honored profession that has a strong tie to the liberal arts tradition of continuous learning.
- Teacher candidates will develop the habit of reflecting on the purpose of schooling, the relationship between school and society, their role and commitment to educating students, and their own classroom practice. Students will become reflective scholars, democratic community builders, and learning-centered curriculum builders whose conduct and commitment to teaching exhibits authenticity and integrity.
- Teacher candidates will have a strong sense of civic responsibility and will be leaders in educational reform initiatives at the local, state, and national level. Teacher candidates will be role models of outstanding classroom teachers and intentional agents of change.
- Teacher candidates will acquire and wield substantive "habits of mind" in the use of educational technology, which will allow them to thoughtfully influence how technology is used in diverse school settings. Each student will complete digital presentation portfolios by the time they graduate, and apply for the Consortium for Outstanding Achievement in Teaching with Technology (COATT) for excellence in teaching with technology.
- Teacher candidates will develop a research and scholarship agenda that will address issues of public policy in Education, as well as serve as a competitive advantage in their professional development and advancement.
Resources for Prospective Teachers
The documents and resources listed here will help guide you as you complete your teacher preparation program at Albion College.
Internet Resources of Interest to Teachers
Education students here at Albion College have searched the Web to identify a small sample of Internet sites that are of interest to all in-service and pre-service teachers. Get on the train and visit the sites they have selected. Please click
to report a broken link.
Mae Ola Dunklin
Director, Shurmur Education Institute
Mae Ola currently serves as the Director of the Fritz Shurmur Education Institution. Mae Ola works closely with faculty and students and also serves as a liaison person between the Albion Public Schools and Albion College. She provides an added value to the Teacher Education Program through the Fritz Shurmur Education Institute by supporting prospective teachers with professional development stipend to enable them to attend conferences and or workshops that extend beyond the regular college curriculum.
Mae Ola is presenting working with a collaboration team of Albion Public School faculty, administration and Albion College faculty to support the teacher education program. This program provides first hand experiences for prospective teachers and support academic growth of the Albion Public Schools students.
Mae Ola taught for 32 years in the Albion Public Schools. Twenty-two years were spent in the classrooms and 6 years as the principal of Harrington Elementary. Mae Ola joined the Education Department Staff in 2002, as a supervisor of student teachers and as an adjunct professor. In the summer of 2003, she became the part-time Director of the Fritz Shurmur Education Institute.
She received her undergraduate degree (Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education ) from Grambling State University, in Grambling, Louisiana and her Master's of Arts Degree from Western Michigan University.
Assistant Professor of Education
Melissa Mercer was hired into the Albion College faculty in August, 2004, and she brings a unique perspective to the teacher preparation program. As a professional museum educator, she has spend countless hours in schools--mostly K-8--and is comfortable teaching all ages and classroom and non-classroom settings. Her passion, however, is to help prospective teachers grow personally and professionally in order to be ethical, reflective, empathetic, and knowledgeable educators and role models for children and youth. She believes that "learning" should be considered broadly to include knowledge and skill gains, attitude and disposition changes, acquisition of multiple perspectives, and identity transactions, among other things. Her work often directs prospective teachers to look to places outside classroom walls for inspiration in their teaching. Dr. Mercer's research focuses on the intersection of Free Choice Learning Environments (FCLEs are places like museums, zoos, planetaria, historic sites, art galleries, and parks) and teacher education.
Dr. Mercer has a B.S. in physics from University of Michigan, M.A.T. in museum education from George Washington University, M.Ed. in science education in museum settings from University of Florida, and Ph.D. in science education (focusing on preparing future teachers to use FCLEs to inspire them to think differently about "learning" and "teaching") from University of Michigan. So far at Albion College, she has taught the introductory courses for the old and new programs, Elementary and Secondary Math and Science Methods courses, Summer Science Camp, Reading in the Content Area, and Student Teaching Seminar, and she has supervised elementary and secondary student teachers. She is excited to be a part of the Albion College/Albion Public Schools collaboration and looks forward to discovering with Albion Public School teachers and the community how she can play a part in rejuvenating the local school district.
Shurmur Center Mission
The mission of the Fritz Shurmur Center for Teacher Development is to equip students seeking teacher certification and professional preparation with a distinctive and relevant undergraduate education that combines the following qualities: (1) the depth of a major in a discipline; (2) the breadth and interdisciplinary focus of an innovative core curriculum rooted in the liberal arts tradition; (3) an array of practical skills as a classroom teacher; (4) a thorough understanding of and engagement with broad issues impacting education; and (5) the ethics of civic responsibility and affirming diversity. Teacher candidates will become superior teachers, firmly grounded in the content of their subject areas and well-versed in traditional and innovative teaching methodologies. Moreover, their commitment to learning and their understanding of the place of education in American culture will enable them to serve as effective change agents for educational reform, within the classroom and in the public policy arena.
The study of the most successful practices in the profession, the development and testing of innovative ideas and educational technologies, and the insights and principles learned in internships, research, and travel will collectively provide a competitive advantage to teacher education graduates in securing an initial teaching position and in sustaining a meaningful career in education. Moreover, the Ferguson Center for Technology-Aided Teaching, in collaboration with the Division of Information Technology, will familiarize teacher candidates with best practice in the integration of technology into teaching and learning.
First year students in the teacher certification program will be admitted competitively in order to attract the brightest students into the teaching profession. Strongly qualified students may also be admitted after the first year. The Fritz Shurmur Center for Teacher Development will offer speakers, co-curricular activities, mentorship opportunities, and a sense of place that will create a special community of learners dedicated to having a significant positive impact on the teaching profession. The emphasis in the liberal arts tradition on superior teaching, coupled with the magic that occurs in the interaction between Albion College faculty and students, provide teacher candidates with models for intellectually stimulating and individually responsive styles of teaching.
Nationally, intelligent young people seeking careers in education are choosing well-respected liberal arts colleges. Consequently, this development center will build upon Albion's strong education program to make the College a leader for teacher preparation in the context of the liberal arts. The Shurmur Center will offer the unique opportunity to merge broad-based, logical, imaginative, and humane thinking with a major in a discipline and the study of teaching and learning in order to develop its students into outstanding educators.
Assistant Professor of Education
My goal as a teacher educator is to maximize the potential of my students to be conscious, ethical actors who promote democratic ideals and work productively in the public sphere. My strong belief in the power of teachers as leaders who make a difference in the lives of young people is grounded in my experiences as a high school teacher. I taught English in Cincinnati Public Schools and helped create a multidisciplinary school-within-a-school to improve ninth graders academic achievement and motivation to stay in school. With the appropriate knowledge base, disposition and ability to communicate and work with others, I believe teachers can transform lives and positively impact communities.
As I finished up my Ph.D. in Educational Leadership (Curriculum) at Miami University, I was fortunate to spend a year as a visiting instructor there teaching courses in curriculum, multicultural education and sociocultural studies of education to masters and undergraduate students. Desiring to learn more about multicultural education, I accepted a position as an assistant professor of Education at the University of Hawai'i Hilo. I gained great respect for the various cultural heritages and traditions of the islands and became fascinated by the development of curriculum and schools shaped around native Hawaiian perspectives and values. In August of 2000 I said goodbye to fresh sushi and humpback whales and accepted a position in the Education Department of Albion College. (And in answer to your inevitable question—who leaves Hawaii for Michigan: I left Hawaii for Michigan because my family lives nearby and I really wanted to teach at a small liberal arts college). I enjoy being part of a small, cohesive program that helps prospective teachers think critically about their work. I cherish the relationships I have formed with students and the many occasions I have for creativity in my teaching. For example, as part of my courses, students have designed classes and learning opportunities for students in the Albion community and have attended professional conferences.
My recent publications have focused upon urban education and media representations of race and class. Currently I am working on a manuscript about service learning and community engagement. However, I have a wide range of interests and would be happy to work with students on FURSCA or other projects in any of the following areas: literacy; cultural studies; multicultural and intercultural education; curriculum theory and development; contexts of education; teacher leadership; school reform; and secondary education.
Faculty and Staff
Kyle Shanton, Ph.D. - Chair
Office: 226 Olin
Suellyn Henke, Ph.D.
Office: 222 Olin
Nonye Alozie M.S., Ph.D.
Office: 223 Olin
Claire Mitchell, Ph.D.
Visiting Assistant Professor
Office: 216 Olin
Director, Ferguson Center for Technology-Aided Teaching & Learning
Office; 225 Olin
Office: 224 Olin
Office: 212 Olin
Education Department Secretary
Office: 224 Olin
Karen S. Hoaglin
Liaison, Fritz Shurmur Center for Teacher Development
Office: 221 Olin Hall
The Ferguson Center for Technology-Aided Teaching and Learning
Established in 1996, the Center accepted the mission of promoting the effective use of technology in the service of teaching and learning. Since then the center has grown and evolved. The Ferguson Center is now home to the Education Department’s Learning Café, a fully equipped computer and media-enabled space that flexibly supports problem-based learning and group work. The Ferguson Center staff, using the resources of the Learning Café, supports Education Department courses, activities, and student field experiences. The Center also collaborates with other organizations and institutions for the development and implementation of instructional technology.
The Ferguson Center for Technology-Aided Teaching and Learning at Albion College is named for its founder and benefactor, William C. Ferguson (right), former CEO of NYNEX. Mr. Ferguson graduated from Albion College in 1952 with a degree in mathematics education. His career took him into the field of technology, specifically communications. The purpose of the Ferguson Center is to bridge the gap of using technology in the K-12 classroom within the context of the education of teachers. Technology abounds; however, the intent of the Ferguson Center is to integrate technology and curriculum for the benefit of student learning and teacher modeling. Mr. Ferguson is currently a member of the Board of Trustees of Albion College, and served as president of the College in an interim capacity during the 1995-96 academic year.
Guy Cox is Director of the Ferguson Center for Technology-Aided Teaching and Learning. Before coming to Albion College he was a member of the Computer Engineering Department at the University of California-Santa Cruz, teaching and working in the areas of Software Engineering and Engineering Ethics. His current research is focused on how children’s technological experiences contribute, detract, and help shape their social, personal, and moral perspectives. He also spent many years working for high-tech companies in Silicon Valley. However, he still primarily identifies himself as an anthropologist having studied educational anthropology at the Graduate School of Education, University of California-Berkeley.
What you’ll study.
At Albion, you'll develop a strong foundation in your major—which is essential for your success as an educator. Then you'll add an education certification through our teacher education program, in conjunction with the Fritz Shurmur Center for Teacher Development. Required courses.
What you’ll do.
Get into the classroom. Right from the start. You'll practice our four essentials for effective teaching—observation, inquiry, reflection, and creativity—while you design and implement lesson plans and eventually teach your own interdisciplinary unit. All this before student teaching. Learn more, and watch our video.
Where you’ll go.
Get certified. We prepare you for elementary and secondary certification, or K–12 certification in French, German, Spanish, and music. And our teacher education program is ranked as one of Michigan's best and nationally recognized. Whether you're thinking of graduate school or entering the field, you'll be more than ready. Certifications.