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Dr. Fiona McDonnell heads new department in School of Education

Dr. Fiona McDonnell

Dr. Sheila Wright, dean in the Graduate School of Education is pleased to announce the transition of all licensure related programs for teachers to a new Teacher Education Department under the leadership of Dr. Fiona McDonnell as department head. Launched on June 1, 2016, the transition process to the new department will conclude on Monday, June 20th at which time Dr. McDonnell will assume full-time leadership of the new department.

Dr. McDonnell most recently served as associate professor, director of the Center for Science Education and education department chair at Emmanuel College, and director of the Professional Educator Preparation Program and other programs in middle and secondary education (graduate and undergraduate) at Rivier University. She began her career in teacher education at Clark University where, as clinical faculty, she supported the Clark-Worcester Professional Development Collaborative. She has extensive experience designing and facilitating in-service opportunities to support teachers in the K-12 setting, especially those in STEM fields.

Dr. McDonnell has dual interests in teacher policy and teacher education.  Her research articulates pedagogical practices which prepare teacher candidates for professional practice. She currently serves on the Massachusetts Alliance for Socio-Emotional Learning in Teacher Education and the Boston Area Girls STEM Collaborative and completed a six-year term on the NH Professional Standards Board and Council for Teacher Education. Dr. McDonnell holds a doctoral degree from Harvard Graduate School of Education in Teaching, Curriculum and Learning Environments, a masters of arts from Tufts University (education), and a bachelor of arts (zoology) from the University of New Hampshire.

The new department is part of a larger initiative in the School of Education designed to facilitate multi-site leadership and greater consistency and intentionality in licensure programs among approved programs for this purpose.  “We are pleased and delighted to have Dr. McDonnel join us as the inaugural department head of the new Teacher Education Department in the Graduate School of Education at Cambridge College,” said Dean Sheila Wright. “She is an accomplished leader with great insights in this area. Please join me in welcoming her to campus.”