On April 12, the University of Delaware College of Education and Human Development set aside a day to showcase student scholarship and celebrate the success of undergraduate and graduates alike.
The day began with the 28th annual Marion H. Steele Symposium, during which students presented research papers and posters highlighting their knowledge about topics such as parenting and academic outcomes among Latino adolescents, practices of mathematics educators, an inventory of sexuality education, and assessing preschoolers’ language abilities.
“The student presentations at the Steele Symposium were impressive and showcased the wide range of scholarly interests across our programs,” said Dean Lynn Okagaki. “Our students truly reflect our vision — working to solve the problems that face our schools and the challenges encountered by children, adults and families, and the communities in which they live.”
Due to the generosity of the Steele family, CEHD has been able to provide a revered event where students can demonstrate their commitment to research. Modeled after a professional research conference, students presented their papers in 20-minute sessions, which ran concurrently.
The conference broke for a mid-morning poster session during which 25 posters were displayed. Faculty, students and benefactors had an opportunity to hear about the students’ work, share feedback and generate discussion about the work presented.
Yueyue Fan, a doctoral student in education, said, “The conference was a great experience for me. I really appreciated the opportunity to present my work to my colleagues and receive feedback from them.”
The Steele Symposium concluded with a luncheon and keynote address from Patrick H. Tolan, the director of the University of Virginia Center to Promote Youth Development. Tolan talked about “Speaking Truth to Policy: The Importance of Quality Educational and Human Development Research.” (See the video on YouTube.)
Celebration of Excellence
In the afternoon, CEHD held its Celebration of Excellence, during which the Department of Human Development and Family Studies (HDFS) and the School of Education each held ceremonies and presented awards. Over 200 family, friends and faculty were on-hand to offer congratulations as the students were recognized for their academic excellence, research, leadership and outstanding potential as professionals in the fields of education and human services.
Award winners were able to meet with benefactors, who said they were delighted to attend the celebration and who included Catherine Bieber and Julie and Michael Wilgen.
Complete lists of awards given for the Department of Human Development and Family Studies and the School of Education are available.
Polly Reinicker, recipient of the Catherine Bieber Scholarship for Academic Achievements and Leadership in HDFS shared how significant the event was to her. “It was truly on honor to meet Dean Bieber, the donor of the Catherine Bieber Award, of which I was the recipient,” she said. “It was inspiring to be surrounded by so many faculty and peers who were passionate about research and the advancement of the human development and family studies field.”
Following the Celebration of Excellence, attendees were welcomed to a reception featuring UDairy Creamery ice cream scooped by faculty members and staff.
This article appeared in UDaily on April 19, 2013.