Temi Bidjerano
Assistant Professor
Research and Statistics
Geneal Cantrell
Clinical Faculty
Lorraine DeJong
Associate Professor

Early Childhood Education
Beth Garrett
Department Assistant
(864) 294-3086
Erikah Haavie
Department Assistant
(864) 294-3083
Harris Heath

School Leadership
Nelly Hecker
Professor and Chair

Literacy Education
Scott Henderson

History/Social Studies Education
George Lipscomb
Social Studies Education
Connie McDowell
Clinical Faculty
School Leadership
Charmaine Moore
Education Analyst
(864) 294-3087

Bobbi Siefert
Visiting Assistant Professor

Katie Stover
Assistant Professor

Judy Stuart
Associate Professor

Special Education

Michael Svec

Science/Math Education
Troy Terry
Director of
Graduate Studies

School Administration
Paul Thomas
English Education

Faculty Information

Dr. Temi Bidjerano joined the Department of Education in the fall of 2007. She has received a Ph.D. and a M.S. degree in Educational Psychology from the University at Albany, State University of New York, and a M.A. in Social Psychology with sub-concentrations in Clinical and Organizational Psychology from the University of Sofia, Bulgaria. Prior to coming to Furman, she worked as a research associate in outcomes assessment at Excelsior College, Albany, NY and an educational program evaluator at the Evaluation Consortium, University at Albany, SUNY . Her areas of expertise include educational research, educational measurement and statistics as well as methodology of cross-cultural research. Temi has published research in nationally and internationally recognized peer reviewed journals such as Learning and Individual Differences and Journal of Early Adolescence. As an active member of several national and regional associations, she has numerous conference presentations in the areas of child development, learning and instruction. Her current research interests include children's after-school activities, self-determination and self-regulated learning.

Geneal Cantrell joined the Education department of Furman University in 1999. At Furman she serves as the Coordinator of the fifth year Teacher to Teacher program. In this capacity she acts as a liaison between the university and partnering schools and school districts. A graduate of Lander University (B.S.), Clemson University (M.A.), with post graduate work at other area institutions, Geneal spent 22 years in the public school system. Geneal is also employed part-time at Spartanburg School District Six where she is the Coordinator of the district's Induction and Mentoring program. She has presented at numerous state and national conferences sharing topics such as teacher retention, mentoring, service learning, building communities in the classroom, motivation, and stress management. Geneal and her husband co-authored a book, Teachers Teaching Teachers: Wit, Wisdom, & Whimsy for Troubled Times with Peter Lang Publishers. She enjoys spending time with her husband, two daughters, and her beagle, Maggie.

Dr. Lorraine DeJong has been a member of the faculty at Furman since 1995. She holds the rank of Associate Professor and is Coordinator for the Department of Education's Early Childhood Program. Lorraine teaches several courses including Human Development, Intergenerational Learning With and About Senior Citizens, and a series of courses in early childhood education including: Teaching and Learning in the Early Primary, Preschool, and Infant-Toddler Years. A native of Cold Springs Harbor, NY, Dr. DeJong received her Ph.D. in Child Development from Florida State University and her BA and MAT from Cornell University in New York. Before coming to Furman, she was a public school teacher throughout Florida where she taught children and adults ages early childhood through college for over 15 years. One of her most memorable teaching positions was to serve as Director of an Early Childhood Infant Program serving teenage parents in Leon County, Florida. Dr. DeJong has written many articles in the fields of early childhood education and teaching pedagogy, including two in the journal of Young Children that relate specifically to the care and education of young children born to teenage parents. She is past president of the South Carolina Association for the Education of Young Children and currently serves as the President of the South Carolina Association of Early Childhood Teacher Educators. She is also a national reviewer of Early Childhood Teacher Education Programs for NAEYC. When not at work, Lorraine enjoys her family which includes her husband of 25 years, her two young adult daughters, a devoted dachshund, and a lively shitzu!

Erikah Haavie is the newest addition to the Education Department at Furman University. She spent the past nine years in New York, working first as an award-winning journalist and then serving as community relations director at The Center for Performing Arts at Rhinebeck. Erikah travels as much as possible (last year, she climbed Aztec pyramids in Mexico and peered down the mouth of a volcano in Costa Rica). As part of her responsibilities as Department Assistant , Erikah works with the Upstate Schools Consortium. She is also a freelance writer and regular contributor to Upstate Parent magazine. She is happy to be back with family and friends in her hometown of Powdersville.

Dr. Harris M. Heath joined the faculty in the Department of Education at Furman University in September 1997. A former principal and school superintendent, he coordinates the school leadership program at Furman. His primary area of interest is the principalship. A graduate of Benedict College (B.A.), New York University (M.A.), and Duke University (Ph.D., 1974), Dr. Heath spent thirty years as a K-12 teacher, administrator, and professor in higher education before coming to Furman. He frequently conducts sessions on team building, leadership, and conflict management for schools, local school boards, and community boards and organizations. He has worked closely with several Upstate school districts in South Carolina to offer district-sponsored principal preparation programs in collaboration with Furman University.

Dr. Nelly Hecker, a faculty member at Furman University since the fall of 1979, has served as Chair of the Department of Education and Director of Teacher Education since 1999. With a Bachelor of Science (1963) and Masters (1964) degrees from Springfield College and Ed. S. (1974) and Ph.D. (1978) degrees from The University of Georgia, her area of specialty is Literacy Education. In 1962, as part of an exchange between the United States and Uruguay, she received a two-year Fulbright Scholarship to study in Massachusetts. Throughout her teaching career, Dr. Hecker has been interested in student and teacher development and in supporting the consistent use of effective teaching practices. Her presentations at state and national conferences highlight curriculum innovations, the use of children's literature in the classroom, and content area reading strategies. Dr. Hecker has had a broad range of teaching experiences in bilingual schools, elementary grades, and higher education. She has authored or co-authored children's literature articles and, at the request of the International Reading Association, co-authored the Evaluation of Lectura y Vida, the Spanish language literacy journal. She has participated in curriculum development institutes on the use of case study methodology to facilitate reflection and decision-making. As Co-Director of the Library of Congress Adventure of the American Mind Grant at Furman (2000-2007), she worked with in-service teachers (K-12) interested in developing effective skills to use online resources from the Library of Congress in their classrooms. Recipient of the 2013 Alester G. Furman, Hr. and Janie Earle Furman Award for Meritorious Advising, she remains committed to offer encouragement and support to teacher candidates as they embrace their preparation as educators.

Dr. A. Scott Henderson, William R. Kenan Jr. Professor of Education, has been a member of Furman University's Education Department since 1998. He is also the Director of Furman's Community of Scholars, as well as Director of National/International Scholarships. His formal academic training includes a B.A. in history and international affairs from Florida State University (1984); an M.A. in history from the Johns Hopkins University (1985); teacher certification in secondary social studies from the University of Virginia (1986); and a Ph.D. in history from the State University of New York at Buffalo (1996). Prior to his appointment in the Education Department, Dr. Henderson was an American and world history teacher in the Chesapeake City, Virginia schools (1986-1989); an instructor of English and Western culture at Yamagata Women's Junior College in Yamagata, Japan (1989-1990); and an adjunct instructor in Furman's History Department (1996-1998). Dr. Henderson teaches undergraduate and graduate education courses, and also supervises student teachers. He was the founder and coordinator of Furman's Teachers As Scholars program (1999-2004). He was the President of the South Carolina chapter of the American Association of University Professors (2005-2007), and has served on the boards of the National Association of Fellowship Advisers (2007-2011), and the Urban History Association (2005-2008). His published scholarship includes books and articles on the history of American social policy and education. Dr. Henderson was a Baruch Scholar (2004) and Truman Scholar (1982), and has also been the recipient of Furman's Meritorious Teaching Award (2013), Furman's Chiles-Harrill Award (2011); the South Carolina Governor's Distinguished Professor Award (2010); the South Carolina Association of Independent Colleges and Universities Excellence in Teaching Award (2010); Furman's Maiden Invitational Award (2008); Furman's Meritorious Advising Award (2002), and Furman's Teacher of the Year Award (2002).

Dr. George B. Lipscomb,a professor in the Education Department, has been at Furman since 2002. He received his B.A. with Honors in History from Davidson College in 1990, his M.A. from Wake Forest University in 1992, and Ph.D. from the University of Florida in 2003. A former middle and high school social studies teacher, he currently instructs elementary and secondary social studies methods, curriculum and technology, and geography among other courses. He is active in social studies education at the local, state, and national level and is currently chair of the Notable Trade Books Committee of the National Council for the Social Studies and Children's Book Council. Dr. Lipscomb has done work in New Zealand schools and has taken students there as part of EDU-265 (see blog). He enjoys soccer, golf, basketball, technology, music, and spending time with his wife and two sons. Dr. Lipscomb's web site: http://eweb.furman.edu/~glipscomb/frames.htm.

Dr. Connie McDowell devoted twenty-eight years to public education. During this time she taught at the elementary school level and at the middle school level. She was chosen Teacher of the Year in 1990 at Liberty Elementary School and Teacher of the Year in 1995 at Edwards Middle School. She also served as the curriculum specialist for an alternative high school, the Reading Department Head at Tri County TEC, and an adjunct professor at Clemson University. She was an assistant principal and a principal of two elementary schools. While principal at Liberty Elementary, a Title One school and the largest elementary school in Pickens County, the school received numerous prestigious awards, which included four consecutive Palmetto Gold Awards, three consecutive SC School Report Card ratings of Excellent, and, three consecutive EOC Closing the Achievement Gap Awards. Under her leadership, the school was also named as a South Carolina Showcase School, an Exemplary Writing School, and a Red Carpet School. In addition to these awards, the school received the SC State Department of Education Deregulation Status during her tenure. Dr. McDowell received her Ph.D. in 2004 in Educational Leadership from Clemson University. In 2005, she was awarded Pickens County Career Woman of the Year. She joined Furman in 2006 as a clinical faculty member and teaches graduate classes in the School Leadership program.

Charmaine Moore joined the Furman University Education Department in July 2003 as the Education Analyst. In this capacity, she works closely with the students majoring in a field of education in compliance with state, federal, and national accrediting body reporting requirements. Charmaine is responsible for a variety of reports including: Professional Education Data System (PEDS); the joint AACTE/NCATE report; Title II report; Student Teacher Report; and Program Assessment Reports. Prior to joining Furman, she served as the Assistant Director of Georgia's pioneering HOPE Scholarship Program, where she developed the undergraduate PROMISE and HOPE Teacher Scholarship programs currently under the HOPE umbrella. Charmaine graduated from Emory University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology (1984). When not commuting from Greenwood to Travelers Rest, she enjoys her family time, gardening, and a good game of Scrabble.

Dr. Katie Stover joined the Education Department in 2012. She holds a Bachelors in Elementary Education from the State University of New York at Cortland; a Masters in Reading Education from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte; and a Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction in Urban Literacy from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Prior to joining the faculty at Furman University, Dr. Stover worked at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte as a Graduate Assistant and Clinical Lecturer in the Reading and Elementary Education Department. Her experience as an elementary classroom teacher and a literacy coach in North Carolina and her home state of New York, inspired her to pursue a career in higher education where she could make a positive impact on future teachers. Her area of expertise is literacy education. She has authored a number of publications related to literacy instruction and literacy coaching in journals such as The Reading Teacher, The Middle School Journal, and The Journal of Early Childhood Research. Additionally, Dr. Stover presents at national and regional conferences and local schools. She currently serves on the board of directors for the Early Childhood Education Assembly (ECEA) of the National Council for Teachers of English (NCTE) and is a reviewer for the Georgia Journal of Reading. Dr. Stover's research interests include critical literacy, writing for social justice, digital literacy, and teacher education.

Dr. Judy Stuart is an Associate Professor and the Coordinator of Special Education programs for the department. Dr. Stuart also coordinates programs and advises students seeking an Education major without certification as preparation for non-teaching fields. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Special Education from Louisiana Tech University and a Master's and Ph.D. in Special Education from the University of New Orleans. Dr. Stuart has been actively involved in working with professionals in special education and other related service providers with particular interests centered on children with special needs and their families. She shares her passion through involvement in the community and in projects with Furman students.

Dr. Michael Svec was born in Berwyn, Illinois, a near west suburb of Chicago. In 1988, he graduated from the University of Illinois-Urbana with a degree in physics. After graduation he remained in Urbana and taught at University High School and Parkland College resulting in discovering a teaching vocation. Dr. Svec earned a Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction (secondary science) from Indiana University-Bloomington in 1994. After graduation, he was an assistant professor of education at Rockhurst College in Kansas City until joining Furman University in 1998. As a member of Furman's Education Department, Dr. Svec teaches all levels of science methods, perspectives on American education, and supervises field placements. He also teaches graduate courses in astronomy and physics for teachers. His professional activities include professional development of teachers, physics education, developing science curriculum, international science education, and inquiry in the K-12 classroom. He is serving on the board of the Roper Mountain Science Center. During the winter/spring of 2005, Dr. Svec was a Fulbright Scholar in the Czech Republic teaching science education courses at Ostrava and Palacky Universities.

Dr. Troy M. Terry, Director of Graduate Studies in Education, came to Furman in July 2005. His entire career spans a gamut of educational experiences including teaching high school English and Drama, and serving as a middle school assistant principal and an elementary principal. Dr. Terry is a literacy and service-learning advocate and has presented at county, state and regional meetings on integrated literacy programs in the elementary school, creating an exemplary writing school, service learning, curriculum integration, teaming, reading and writing across the curriculum, grant writing, and humanities-based curriculum. Dr. Terry has authored or edited three publications on curriculum integration: ARISE – Integrating Service Learning into the Curriculum 9-12; ARISE: Service Learning at the Middle Level; and REACH: Integrating the Collaborative Humanities. Dr. Terry completed a doctoral dissertation on the 21st Century Learning Grant's after-school programs and how they affect individual student achievement on the SC PACT test in 2004. Dr. Terry's first experience at Furman was serving as an adjunct instructor of service-learning methodology. He has been recognized by a Furman University summa cum laude graduate as a "Master Teacher". Currently, Dr. Terry oversees all phases of the Graduate program and serves as a professor of School Leadership. Continued research interests include Public School Administration and the Law, Literacy, gender differences in learning, and contextual teaching methodology.

Dr. P. L. Thomas, a Professor of Education at Furman University since 2002, taught high school English for 18 years at Woodruff High along with teaching as an adjunct at a number of Upstate colleges. He holds an undergraduate degree in Secondary Education (1983) along with an M. Ed. in Secondary Education (1985) and Ed. D. in Curriculum and Instruction (1998), all from the University of South Carolina. Dr. Thomas has focused throughout his career on writing and the teaching of writing. He has published fiction, poetry, and numerous scholarly works since the early 1980s. Currently, he works closely with the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) as a column editor for English Journal, Challenging Text, and the SC Council of Teachers of English (SCCTE) as co-editor of South Carolina English Teacher. His major publications include a critique of American education, Numbers Games (2004, Peter Lang); a text on the teaching of writing, Teaching Writing Primer (2005, Peter Lang); and books in a series edited by Thomas, Confronting the Text, Confronting the World—his most recent volume being Reading, Learning, Teaching Ralph Ellison (2008, Peter Lang). He has also co-authored a work with Joe Kincheloe (McGill University), Reading, Writing, and Thinking: The Postformal Basics (2006, Sense Publishers), and Renita Schmidt, 21st Century Lieracy: If We Are Scripted Are We Literate? (Springer, 2009). His next books include Parental Choice? (2010, Information Age Publishing) and the first volume in a new series he edits, Challenging Genres: Comics and Graphic Novels (Sense Publishers). His scholarship and teaching deal primarily with critical literacy and social justice.


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