College of Education celebrates 50 years of shaping educators
May 8, 2013
By Deborah Snow Humiston
When the College of Education began 50 years ago, it only offered one degree — in elementary education. Today, the college prepares counselors, special education teachers, principals and education policymakers for jobs in today’s academic world through its six undergraduate and 33 graduate degree offerings.
“Our 50th anniversary is an opportunity to pause and look back at our origins,” said Dean Paul Zionts. “As we continue to expand and refine our offerings, our anniversary reminds us that we have a legacy of half a century to grow from and build upon.”
To celebrate its anniversary, the college will host the inaugural Celebrating Teachers event to honor exceptional teachers nominated by DePaul seniors. The college will honor finalists at its Honors Convocation ceremony June 6.
“We know deeply the value of teaching and teachers at the College of Education as we work to prepare the best educators each day,” Zionts said. “Each of us is likely to have been inspired by a teacher who has positively impacted our lives and is due a ‘thank you.’”
Live and online events scheduled
A web page on Celebrating Teachers and a timeline of the college’s history are now available online.
In addition, the college has hosted a number of events throughout the year to celebrate its anniversary, including several symposiums on current education topics of interest to local educators and the DePaul community. More than 200 people attended the February symposium on standardized testing.
The college’s collaboration with Facing History and Ourselves also will include events in honor of the college’s mission and anniversary. The collaboration gives historical perspective to current dialogue in schools about racism, anti-Semitism, intolerance and bullying. College of Education graduates also have ongoing access to Facing History resources, workshops and seminars as they move through their professional careers in education.
“Our collaborations with Facing History and Ourselves exemplify how the college is committed to improving the quality of instruction for our students through initiatives with Chicago schools, ultimately broadening opportunities for the success of K-12 students,” Zionts said. “It is critical for us to work with external partners in deep, meaningful partnerships. These relationships positively impact and inform our classroom teaching and research while simultaneously improving the experiences of the public school students.”
Looking to the past and future
The College of Education’s 50th anniversary is a good opportunity to reflect not only on the college’s humble beginnings but to look forward to an exciting future full of growth and innovation.
“Over the years, the college has earned and maintained a strong reputation as a leader in the field of education,” Zionts said. “We are clearly no longer ‘your parents’ version of a college of education. To me, the most important goal for the next 50 years is to maintain our reputation by continuing our efforts to provide relevant, innovative, high-quality programs and services that prepare our students to be successful in their profession.”