Dr. Stephanie Applewhite, a first-generation student, completed her Ed.D. in Educational Leadership at Stephen F. Austin State University, Texas, in 2015. Her professional experiences includes K-12 teaching, curriculum design, secondary administration, and teacher preparation. Her passion is creating courses that intentionally address the needs of first-generation learners in their first year of college. Her primary research and passion includes first-year, first-generation academic self-efficacy, transitions into college, and dual credit and Early College High Schools that create sustainable pathways leading to college completion. As a grant writer and manager, she ambitiously seeks funding to support effective programming for marginalized students. Other research includes teacher dispositions and CAEP, delivering engaging online courses, and women in educational leadership.
For fun, Dr. Applewhite plays co-ed softball, kayaks, loves playing games and travels. She looks forward to Origins, a gaming convention in Columbus, Ohio, every summer (a family tradition with her son and his family) where she meets with game makers and explores how to connect learning opportunities to game designs. Her innovations have inspired game makers to consider all the possible connections to learning objectives and standards. It won’t take long to realize how she implements gaming into her classes, regardless of the level or learning content, and she welcomes visitors to class.
“As a teacher, I am always a learner," she says. "When I am with learners, 'we' journey together through learning experiences, adventures and discoveries. I aspire to work with learners so that each one finds within him- or herself a deep passion and purpose for teaching. All learners can achieve success when the expectations are set very high and the proper resources are provided. I could not be more delighted than when I am in this creative space with learners.”