Georgia State University’s College of Education increased the number of minority students graduating from its Ph.D. programs, according to a set of national rankings released this year.
The College of Education is the eighth producer of African-American Ph.D. graduates and the 13th producer of minority Ph.D. graduates in education nationally, according to “Diverse: Issues in Higher Education” magazine.
These rankings place GSU’s College of Education among other leading universities, such as the University of North Carolina, Yale University, Columbia University and Texas A&M University.
“This recent increase in our rankings has really set the stage for us to join those aspirant universities,” said Gwen Benson, College of Education associate dean of school and community partnerships. “We’re serving a very diverse population of students, both graduate and undergraduate, and I think the doctoral level candidates are seeing Georgia State as the place to continue their education.”
The college’s strategic action plan places an emphasis on diversifying its faculty, staff and students – a goal that may have contributed to the college’s increase in Ph.D. graduates.
“Because our college’s new educator preparation mission is centered on equity and diversity, we appeal to individuals from diverse cultures,” said Joyce Many, the College of Education’s associate dean of academic affairs.
The Alonzo A. Crim Center for Urban Educational Excellence, which is housed in the college and offers leadership training through its Urban Teacher Leadership Master’s Program, also plays a part in bringing minority students to the college. The center recruits from the diverse population of teachers in Georgia and provides mentoring for each cohort that goes through the program.
“Most students have such a good experience in receiving their master’s in urban teacher leadership that many return to further their graduate studies,” said Benson, who is also the director of the Crim Center.
By offering this program and focusing on recruiting underrepresented populations, the college is helping to diversify the teaching population in Georgia, Benson added.
“As the diversity of our P-12 student population in Georgia grows, the diversity of our teaching force and leadership personnel is not keeping pace, so we’re trying to do our part to help address this issue,” she said.
In 2009, the college was the 11th producer of African-American doctorates and the 16th producer of minority doctorates in education.
For more information on the rankings, visit www.diverseeducation.com/top100.