Mary V. Alfred, Ph.D. is an associate dean for Research and Faculty Affairs and professor of Adult Education and Human Resource Development in the College of Education and Human Development at Texas A&M University. Her research interests include learning and development among women of the African Diaspora, socio-cultural contexts of immigration, welfare reform and women's economic development, and issues of equity and social justice in higher education and in the workplace. She received her Ph.D. in Educational Administration with a focus in Adult Education and Human Resource Development Leadership from the University of Texas at Austin.
As a Black Anglophone Caribbean woman, I present some reflections of my professional development journey, stemming from the early beginnings in my home country leading to…
As a Black Anglophone Caribbean woman, I present some reflections of my professional development journey, stemming from the early beginnings in my home country leading to the United States ivory tower. While many stories have been told of the Black woman in academe, little has been shared about the professional development history of the Black Caribbean woman who has made significant strides in US higher education. In telling my story, I begin with a snapshot of the history of experiences in my home country and in the United States since the contexts of these experiences influence how I respond to daily life's events as a faculty and associate dean at a top tier research university. After this historical portrait, I highlight some critical events that contributed to my transformation of self and ideology in the United States, how I came to terms with being a racialized minority in predominantly white professional spaces, and my approaches to the management of discriminatory and hegemonic practices in such spaces. Lastly, I conclude with some thoughts on how women of color can proactively manage their professional careers in higher education.
The pipeline to the professoriate in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields for African-Americans has been at best a leaky faucet. It is a common…
The pipeline to the professoriate in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields for African-Americans has been at best a leaky faucet. It is a common knowledge that if more African-Americans are to enter the professoriate, they must first graduate from four-year institutions in these fields. The literature is clear that historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) are uniquely positioned to increase the pipeline to the professoriate for this population even in the midst of questions concerning the viability of these institutions. As a result, this study examines a unique population (i.e., African-American, academically gifted, millennial students) in HBCUs to understand the factors that facilitate successful degree attainment. On the basis of the findings of this study, recommendations will be provided for several constituents to move this population through the pipeline to the professoriate.
This chapter examines the perceptions of school leaders of the School Improvement Zone (SIZ), a landmark intervention program intended to advance student achievement while…
This chapter examines the perceptions of school leaders of the School Improvement Zone (SIZ), a landmark intervention program intended to advance student achievement while eliminating low performance in 39 geographically noncontiguous low-performing schools in a large urban district in the United States. Primary components of the initiative include (a) a core literacy program that extends from pre-kindergarten through grade 12 and is consistent across all Zone schools, (b) a structured curriculum and instructional strategies that build across grade and school levels, (c) an extended day and school year, (d) the provision of extensive professional development activities for Zone school teachers and administrators, partnerships with universities and community groups, and (e) Student Development Teams to bring together social workers and psychologists to focus on prevention strategies rather than treatment for struggling students.
Research to improve access and equity for women of color in higher education offers insights on the nuanced challenges and opportunities that exist today. In the past…
Research to improve access and equity for women of color in higher education offers insights on the nuanced challenges and opportunities that exist today. In the past, women of color confronted overt discrimination in their pursuit of educational and career attainment. Today, they are likely to face more subtle practices couched in what Miller (2010) coins, the “deservingness” status suggesting that although women of color have gained entry in the academy, they come under scrutiny in their faculty and administrative roles. Despite such scrutiny, their presence in the academy has brought them a measure of social independence, ushered in multiple perspectives to enrich students' learning experiences, and have challenged traditional approach to research knowledge, and leadership theories and practices (Glazer Raymo, 2008; Jean-Marie, Williams & Sherman, 2009; Lloyd-Jones, 2009).