Sherman, Texas – Dr Julia Shahid, associate professor of education at Austin College, will present a talk, “Pandemic Pivot” on Wednesday, September 22 at 5:00 pm in the Mabee Hall of the Wright Campus Centers. A reception will precede the conference at 4:00 p.m. in the adjacent Johnson Gallery. The lecture is part of the Bernice S. Melvin Sabbatical Series hosted by the college’s Robert and Joyce Johnson Center for Faculty Development and Excellence in Teaching. The event is free and open to the public as well as to the campus community. Participants must wear masks for COVID protection inside all buildings at Austin College.
Shahid is a faculty member of the Austin Teacher Program at Austin College, which trains future teachers, culminating in the Master of Arts in Teaching. She has been a faculty member at Austin College since 1999 and previously had over 20 years of experience as a teacher, program director and public school principal.
Preparing for a sabbatical during the spring term of 2020, she had planned to visit 12 ATP teachers in the field for follow-up observations and interviews, adding them to material from a previous sabbatical for a longitudinal study. . ?? Was that the plan, ??? Shahid said. COVID derailed this plan.
His plans, like the plans of individuals around the world, have changed dramatically. No one went to school, so she had no classroom teachers to observe. That’s when the various pivots came into play, she said. ?? I ended up tutoring my two grandchildren every day and got to see how they were adjusting to distance learning, ?? Shahid said. This work informed my second pivot when I taught my graduate students at Austin College in the summer of 2020. Ultimately the third pivot came when I started teaching last fall (2020 ) with the hy-flex model (in-person and remote students). ??
During her presentation, Shahid will share what she saw and learned at each step of the pivot.
Austin College’s Robert and Joyce Johnson Center for Faculty Development and Teaching Excellence is led by Dr. Andrea Overbay, Associate Professor of Mathematics. Within the mission of the center is the encouragement of “the daring exploration of intellectual frontiers”? and ?? foster a lively intellectual dialogue within and between academic disciplines.
The Bernice S. Melvin Sabbatical Series honors the late Emeritus Professor of French Dr. Bernice Melvin, who taught at Austin College from 1980 until his retirement in 2015. As Department Director, Dean of Humanities and Director of the Johnson Center, Bernice was a tireless supporter of faculty autonomy and research, and fostered a collegial environment of scholarly creativity and innovation across all divisions and disciplines of Austin College. She loved hearing her colleagues discuss their research and sabbatical experiences and was a driving force behind “Tuesdays with”? presentations from professors who were a precursor to the Johnson Center Sabbatical Series. She passed away in May 2020.
The Johnson Center programs a number of events throughout the year, with presentations by professors and guest speakers from Austin College.
Austin College, a private national liberal arts college located north of Dallas in Sherman, Texas, has built a reputation for excellence in academic preparation, international studies, pre-professional foundations, leadership development , engaged teachers, and hands-on, adventurous learning opportunities. . One of the 40 schools described in Loren Pope’s influential book Colleges that change lives, Austin College has a welcoming community that embraces diversity and individuality, with over 50 percent of students identifying as people of color. The residential student body of approximately 1,300 students and over 100 expert faculty members enables a 13: 1 student-faculty ratio and personalized attention. Covenanted with the Presbyterian Church (USA), Austin College cultivates an inclusive atmosphere that supports students ?? journeys of faith regardless of religious tradition. The College, founded in 1849, is the oldest institution of higher education in Texas operating under its original name and charter.