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The Grad Post Double Eagle Spotlight for Fall 2018

Memory Littles, M.Ed.

Office of Student Activities
Georgia Southern University

Q:Tell us what being a Georgia Southern Double Eagles means to you?

A: Being a Georgia Southern Double Eagle means being so committed to and confident in the institution that prides herself in the holistic development of students, that you return for a double dose of quality, higher education.

Q:How has becoming a Georgia Southern Double Eagle helped you professionally?

A: Becoming a Georgia Southern Double Eagle has helped me to gain a more well-rounded understanding of the inner workings of an institution of higher learning, while in a familiar environment. Choosing to obtain a second, advanced degree from the same institution allows you to bypass the initial steps of getting acclimated to a new environment and allows you to fully immerse yourself into the campus community.

Q: Why would you tell someone to join you as a Double Eagle?

A: I would tell them, join me as a Georgia Southern Double Eagle and reinvest in the institution that helped shape your future.

Q: What have been some benefits for you, or what do you feel are the benefits of becoming a Double Eagle?

A: The benefits of being a Georgia Southern Double Eagle are not only being better positioned for advancement in my professional career, but also the opportunities to connect with other Alumni that are equally committed to the institution. More often than not, Double Eagles tend to be included and more actively engaged in conversations that have a direct impact on the campus and Statesboro communities.

The Grad Post Student Spotlights for Fall 2018

Courtney Smith

Graduate Program: Ed.S. School Psychology
Undergraduate Degree: Bachelor of Science in Education – Early Childhood Education
Undergraduate University: Georgia Southern University
Length of program: 3 years

Q: What drew you to Georgia Southern University?

A: The most influential experience in my deciding to become a school psychologist was my experience teaching Kindergarten. During my years teaching, I quickly saw the importance and benefit of early intervention in mediating academic, social, emotional, behavioral, and other developmental concerns in young students. I saw many of my students thrive and overcome great obstacles when they were afforded interventions, services, and supports early in life. In advocating for some of my students, I had the opportunity to work with school psychologists and learn more about this field. I quickly knew that this was my best path to further improving educational experiences and life outcomes for a variety of students.

When I settled on pursuing a career in School Psychology, Georgia Southern was the obvious choice. Between the excellent reputation of the College of Education and the NASP (National Association of School Psychologists) approved status of the School Psychology program, I felt confident this would be the best program to prepare me for furthering my career in education. I began communicating with Dr. Dawn Tysinger about my interest in the program and her responsive nature sealed my decision. Her pride in the program was evident and it only increased my excitement for pursuing this field of study at Georgia Southern.

Q: What are your Georgia Southern “points of pride”?

A: Georgia Southern has the only NASP approved Ed.S. program for School Psychology in our state. Our program’s alignment and connection with both NASP and GASP (Georgia Association of School Psychologists) has been extremely beneficial in providing me opportunities beyond our coursework and field experiences. Since August 2017, I have served as the Georgia Southern student representative on GASP’s executive board. In May 2018, I received the “Advocacy in Action” scholarship from NASP to support my attendance at their annual Public Policy Institute in Washington, D.C. GASP provided financial support for my travel and I spent three days learning about advocacy and relevant legislation at George Washington University and putting newly attained advocacy skills in practice on Capitol Hill. Learning from and with professionals and experts in our field at the institute is my most memorable graduate experience.

Q: Tell us about your research.

A: I am currently in the process of obtaining approval for and conducting my Action Research project. My research focuses on the effectiveness of bibliotherapy as an intervention for childhood anxiety in the school-based setting. I utilize bibliotherapy in many of my counseling groups within the school. School psychologists are required to implement research-based interventions throughout their practice, so I thought researching an intervention in which I see much promise and potentially adding to its research base would be beneficial to my future practice and our field.

Q: How is Georgia Southern preparing you for your future career?

A: Georgia Southern has prepared me for my future career in many ways. First and foremost, I personally believe my training has been second to none. I feel confident in entering the field and beginning comprehensive practice immediately upon graduation. Another vital way in which Georgia Southern has prepared me is through networking and building connections. My cohort is very close. Though we are now scattered across the Southeast, we remain in touch and the bond we formed during our time in the program cannot be quantified in its benefit to each of us in our practice. Our program also has an excellent mentoring program that has allowed me to build connections across cohorts. School Psychology can often be an isolating field. A single school psychologist may serve an entire school system and this can lead to burn out and lack of available support from professional peers. Having these relationships with my peers from the program and faculty members as well will be an invaluable resource as I begin practice.

Vaughnette Goode-Walker

Graduate Program: Master of Arts, History
Undergraduate Degree: Political Science – History
Undergraduate University: Morris Brown College
Length of program: 2 years

Vaughnette Goode-Walker established the Footprints of Savannah Walking Tour Company, in 2009, to educate visitors and local residents about the rich and diverse history of Savannah. She is currently the Director at the Ralph Mark Gilbert Civil Rights Museum. In 2014, she conducted the research necessary to re-interpret the King-Tisdell Cottage, a Black History House Museum, in Savannah. Goode-Walker is the former director of Cultural Diversity of the Telfair Museums. She also worked as Assistant Curator of Education at the Telfair’s Owens-Thomas House to introduce the social history of its former inhabitants — white and black; men, women and children; free and enslaved.

Goode-Walker’s research skills are extensive. She is co-author of the book series Civil War Savannah, which includes Brokers, Bankers, and Bay Lane, a history of urban slavery in Savannah. The book received the Georgia Historical Records Advisory Board, 2012 Archives Award for Excellence in Research.

In addition to her experiences with public history, Goode-Walker worked as a broadcast journalist for ABC Radio/TV, CNN, and CNN International. She is a renowned poet whose first poetry collection, Going Home, was published in Spring 2010. Goode – Walker also taught History at, her Alma mater, St. Vincent’s Academy, in Savannah, Georgia.

Her community involvement includes: Visit Savannah, board chair; Savannah Chamber of Commerce Board; Tourism Advisory Committee, chair; Friends of Massie Board;and the Ossabaw Island Foundation.

Q: What drew you to Georgia Southern University?

A: Determined to finish what I started and because of its growing reputation, I returned to Armstrong to complete my Master of Arts in History. Working in local Museums I have encountered recent graduates who are working in the field and spoke highly of it. I also remembered the comfortable learning environment and the classes being the perfect size. It’s been a great experience being in this academic community. The selection of classes have been perfect with the help of my advisor Dr. Christopher Hendricks.

Q: What are your Georgia Southern “points of pride?” 

A: The Architecture class from Dr. Hendricks and really learning to “read a building.”
Thanks to Dr. Knoerl “digital history” is the best!
If I could do another degree, it would Geography! Dr. Amy Potter’s “Introduction to the Geography of Tourism” was a game changer for my work in Tourism.
I now understand how to read “historic letters” because of Dr. Ebel’s class.
The History of Africa since 1800 filled in the history blanks and Dr. Nti brought it all together.

Q:What is one thing you are most proud of during your time here at Georgia Southern?

A: The one thing I am most proud of is being able to read the scholars, do the research and write the History that I am working with in my career.

Q: Tell us about your research.

A: I have continued with other research projects while in school. I completed the research for the Historic Marker for Carver State Bank Founder, Louis B. Toomer and was part of the group of local historians looking at the 1872 history of the Confederate Statue in Forsyth Park.

Q: Tell us about your internship.

A: My Internship is planned for next semester. However, I had the opportunity to work with recent Graduate Matthew Dantzler. He selected to do his internship at the Ralph Mark Gilbert Civil Rights Museum. Mr. Dantzler performed well, doing research for the expanded exhibit being planned at the Museum. By the end of his time there he was greeting guests and giving tours. I would say he is an excellent example of the many success stories in the History Department.

Q: How is Georgia Southern preparing you for your future career?

A: Georgia Southern has really prepared me for the future with its focus on the Digital Age. Working on this degree has been ideal as I continue to advance my work in Public History.

Katie Slusher

Graduate Program: Doctor of Clinical Psychology, Psy.D.
Undergraduate Degree: Psychology, B.S.
Undergraduate University: Mercer University
Length of program: 5 years

 Q: What drew you to Georgia Southern for your graduate studies?

A: I applied to Georgia Southern’s Psy.D. program because it combines the best features of a PhD program (research opportunities, small cohorts) with the benefits of a Psy.D. program (focus on clinical skills and application). I also was drawn to the program’s rural focus as they emphasized training providers for under-served and rural areas. When I arrived at Georgia Southern for program interviews, I immediately fell in love with the campus and felt at home. The faculty were welcoming and I knew I would gain valuable research and clinical opportunities while receiving helpful mentorship.


Q: What are your Georgia Southern “points of pride?” 

A: My Georgia Southern “point of pride” is my dissertation. I conducted multiple six week parent training groups with members of the community in an attempt to reduce child behavior problems and parental stress while increasing resilience in children. I gained valuable experience in research as I was able to write the treatment manual and then implement the interventions on a biweekly basis for 8 months. While I enjoy research, I found the most meaning in providing a valuable resource for the community as many families may have limited access to evidence-based treatments. Watching families grow and learn together has been an immensely rewarding experience and I am hopeful this program will become a recurring group through the Georgia Southern Psychology Clinic which provides services on a sliding scale.

Q: Tell us about your research.

A: In my four years I have been a part of two labs conducting research on various topics including substance abuse and mindfulness as well as childhood trauma and religiosity. For the past two years I have been conducting my dissertation which examined the role of behavioral parent-training on child behavior problems and parental stress. I also wanted to incorporate a positive focus, so I included resilience interventions (e.g., self-esteem, optimistic thinking) to determine if these benefitted children and families. For eight months I ran biweekly groups with community members in six-week rotations to determine if my interventions reduced child behavior problems and parental stress and increased child resilience.


Q: Tell us about your internship.

A: I have spent the previous three years engaged in clinical practicum experiences at various locations including the Georgia Southern Psychology Clinic, the Regents Center for Learning Disorders, a behavioral pediatrics practice, and an elementary school on Fort Stewart. I have provided individual and group therapy to individuals ranging from preschool to older adult. I have learned to effectively implement a wide range of techniques to help clients reach their goals as well as how to work with a team to provide integrated, coordinated care.


Q: How is Georgia Southern preparing you for your future career?

A: After four years of study, students in clinical psychology apply for a fifth-year pre-doctoral internship as the final requirement before graduation. Our program goes above and beyond in preparing us for this internship because we receive a wide variety of clinical experiences as well as thorough formal training. We also have a Professional Development course which is designed to prepare us for everything from internship to licensure and beyond. This course has been so helpful that the majority of students in the last two years have received their first-choice internship. Beyond internship, we have had numerous guest lecturers who have provided valuable insight on various career paths. Overall, our Psy.D. program produces prepared, qualified, and competitive candidates for internship and beyond.

The Grad Post Program Spotlight For Fall 2018

Master of Arts in English

Dr. Dustin Anderson, Program Director

The graduate program in English at Georgia Southern University prepares its students for a variety of careers or for advanced doctoral work. Students who enroll in the Master of Arts program in English enjoy the engaging atmosphere of graduate study and work closely with faculty members. Admitting 10-12 students a year, the program fosters a genuine sense of community while providing students opportunities for professional development unusual for our size.

Graduate English faculty at Georgia Southern are published scholars whose specialties are as diverse as the courses within the program. Faculty members create a stimulating and innovative learning environment for graduate students. The Center for Irish Research and Teaching adds dimension to the graduate English program. The Department also houses two international journals, the Journal of Commonwealth and Postcolonial Studies and Exemplar: The Journal of South Asian Studies, sponsors the annual British Commonwealth and Postcolonial Conference, and coordinates the American Literature Association’s Symposium on American Fiction in Savannah. These programs enable students to become actively involved in editorial work and organizing and participating in conferences and advanced literary research.

Graduate students in the program also have the opportunity to Study Abroad  in Ireland for three weeks. They learn about the country and its role in the Western world’s understanding of myth, memory, and religion on a transnational scale while exploring the countryside outward from the program’s base in Waterford. Students have the opportunity and must be enrolled in at least 4 credit hours to participate.

Dr. Dustin Anderson is Associate Professor & Director of Graduate Studies in the Masters in English Program, and associate faculty for The Center for Irish Research and Teaching at Georgia Southern University.

His scholarship is rooted in the complex nature of memory and forgetting. His research work focuses on the interaction between memory and the body, specifically the failures and slippages of memory, in the works of transnational authors from James Joyce, Samuel Beckett, Ernest Hemingway, to contemporary authors like Cormac McCarthy. These fictive case-studies explore the moment of interaction between the cognitive mind and the corporeal body as memories become actions—or fail to become actions. He examines moments of memory failure or slippage in light of cognitive science developed by neurophilosphers (from Bergson to recent works by Pinker, Kandel, Ramachandran and Damásio) to discuss how these types of memory events work in studies of phantom limbs and bodies, neuro and physical memory mapping, and in neuropathies as they materialize in language.

His scholarly work has most recently appeared in Popular Modernism and Its Legacies; and also in Understanding Bergson, Understanding Modernism; The Plays of Samuel Beckett; and Samuel Beckett Today/Aujourd’hui. He has an upcoming piece on “Cormac McCarthy and Romanticism.”

One of his favorite aspects of his professional work is organizing academic conferences. He has recently directed the 24th annual Cormac McCarthy Society Conference in Austin, and the 13th International F. Scott Fitzgerald Conference in Dublin. He is also a regular organizer for the British Commonwealth and Postcolonial Studies Conference here in Savannah.

He has designed and taught nearly 30 separate courses since 2010.

COE M.Ed. in early childhood education program named No. 12 in national rankings

Georgia Southern has been ranked 12th in the 20 Best Online Master’s in Early Childhood Education list by Top Education Degrees.

“This honor is well-deserved given the hard work that program faculty put into maintaining a high quality, relevant and updated program,” said Tracy Linderholm, Ph.D., professor and associate dean of graduate education and research for COE.

According to Top Education Degrees, rankings are determined using information from the National Center for Education Statistics, a service of the United States government. Criteria includes tuition value, relevance of the curriculum to the current demands of the profession and emphasis on individual contact (represented by student-to-faculty ratio). Additional points are awarded in the categories of national recognition, going above and beyond for student services and reduced hourly rate of tuition for online students.

Out of 30 possible points (prior to additional bonus points), Georgia Southern received a total of 27 points. Comparatively, the top ranking school, Edinboro University of Pennsylvania, received a total of 33 points.

Among the emphasized points of pride for the program presented by Top Education Degrees were the faculty-to-student ratio of 21:1, as well as current and relevant curriculum and coursework for students.

The M.Ed. in Early Childhood Education at Georgia Southern University is a 36-credit hour program offered completely online as a certificate upgrade for teachers who currently hold a level four Georgia certificate for early childhood education or equivalent. The program is an approved program of study by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission (PSC) and meets the PSC’s certificate upgrade requirements.

The curriculum of this master’s degree program is based upon the concept of developmentally appropriate practices and the value of diverse, intensive field experiences working with diverse student populations. It is, according to Chair of the Department of Teaching and Learning Bruce Field, Ph.D., “part of Georgia Southern’s ongoing commitment to enhancing the professional development of the state’s P-12 teaching force.”

For more information about the M.Ed. in Early Childhood Education program, visit

Georgia Southern University, a public Carnegie Doctoral/Research University founded in 1906, offers 118 degree programs serving 20,673 students. Through eight colleges, the University offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs built on more than a century of academic achievement. Georgia Southern is recognized for its student-centered and hands-on approach to education. Visit


This article was orginially posted on August 24, 2017 and can be found here.

Georgia Southern University​ Student Leading on a National Level


The National Black Graduate Student Association (NBGSA) is pleased to announce the election of Counselor Education Ed.S. graduate student John Nwosu as National Immediate Past President at the organization’s 28th National Conference in Houston, TX on March 19, 2016. John will help NBGSA enhance the academic, professional, personal, and social development of Blacks in Higher Education as the organization works to increase effective recruitment, progression, graduation, and achievement for all students who identify as Black at institutions across the nation.

As a student-run and operated, non-profit, interdisciplinary organization we strive to build upon the legacy of our founders who planned and hosted our first national conference in 1989 to provide an opportunity for Black graduate students to develop professionally. The first conference also serve as a forum for future researchers and academic professionals. Today NBGSA still aims to provide current and potential graduate students with critical resources that enrich their academic, personal, professional, and social experience.

This year the National Black Graduate Student Conference (NBGSC) welcomed attendees from around the world. The NBGSC created opportunities for students, advocates, and professionals to connect, engage, develop, and provide support for one another. NBGSA also provided exceptional students with awards and service-based scholarships. In addition, the Graduate School and Career Fair offered attendees opportunities to network with recruiters and employers from across the nation. Attendees also participated in amazing personal, academic, and professional development opportunities in the form of engaging keynote, panel, and workshop presenters.

“As students who have been entrusted with the honor and responsibility of leading our organization, we aim to create spaces where Black students, with shared experiences from different backgrounds, are able to connect, engage, develop, and find support in safe, affirming communities,” said President Nwosu. The 2016-17 Leadership Team is already working to move forward the vision and mission of NBGSA. The Team will be meeting June 23-26 in Washington, D.C. for its Leadership Transition Meeting where Mr. Nwosu will be officially installed as an officer for the organization. Please support your student leader as they endeavor to help current Black graduate and professional students complete their degrees, encourage undergraduates of African descent to pursue graduate studies, and contribute to a network of scholars who are dedicated to serving the larger Black community.