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Spring 2008 | Volume 31, Number 1 | Campus

The “Oscar” for Educators

Model of Excellence Award

SPU School of Education wins AILACTE award
From left: SOE Dean William Rowley, Debby Espinor, and SOE Associate Dean Frank Kline with the AILACTE award.
When it comes to forming partnerships, Seattle Pacific University’s School of Education (SOE) is in a class by itself.

At least that was the conclusion of the Association of Independent Liberal Arts Colleges for Teacher Education (AILACTE), which awarded SOE the 2008 Model of Excellence Award for Partnerships at its annual conference in February. Only one Model of Excellence Award is given nationally each year.

“It’s like winning an Oscar for work you believe in,” says Debby Espinor, director of placement and partnerships.

Over the past six years, thanks to initial support from the Lilly Endowment, SOE has focused on developing new partnerships to help prepare the next generation of educators.

“We collaborate every day with school districts around the state,” notes Espinor. “Our students are in classrooms working with teachers.” But SOE’s more than 30 external partners now include two ethnically diverse schools in Seattle — Dearborn Park Elementary and Zion Prep Academy — and America Latina School in Guatemala and World Vision Appalachia in West Virginia. “These relationships combine our desire to partner with others and our commitment to diversity and reconciliation,” says SOE Dean William Rowley.

The award committee cited these collaborations as well as SOE’s work with the SPU College of Arts and Sciences, an internal partnership that is highly unusual. Unlike at many institutions, SOE students major in an academic discipline, not just education. This means they learn what to teach as well as how to teach.

“This award is recognition of a long history of excellent teaching, scholarship, and outreach by the School of Education,” says Vice President for Academic Affairs Les Steele. “Partnerships are at the heart of SOE’s work.”

—Photo by Luke Rutan

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Department Highlights

New Leadership
SPU welcomes new theology dean, Doug Strong, Ph.D.

The “Oscar” for Educators
School of Education wins national “Model of Excellence” award.

Faculty, Students Offer Hope in Rural West Virginia
Faculty and graduate students helped local educators.

A New Day for SPU Chapel Program
Students receive a chance to distribute $37,500.

Reconciled Concert Welcomes John Perkins
SPU’s Gospel Choir and Wind Symphony joined for an exciting concert.

Challenge Your Mind in April
SPU is the place to be in April 2008 — with three major lectures.

Palmer’s Secrets for Preaching Great Sermons
Rev. Earl Palmer speaks to area church leaders.