Meet the 2012 UCSB–FAMU Scholars and read what they had to say about their experience in the UCSB–FAMU Educational Evaluation Research Scholars Program.
Pictured from left to right: Darrius Stanley, Adam Bailey, Lois Harmon, and Eugene Bellamy Jr.
Adam Bailey, a native of Southern California, earned two degrees from FAMU, a B.S. in Mathematics and an M.Ed. in Mathematics Education. He is currently a graduate student in the Educational Leadership program at FAMU’s College of Education. While attending the Scholars Program, his research focused on the effectiveness of developmental math education using regression discontinuity design analysis. As an Adjunct Professor at FAMU, his passion for this area of research stems from his desire to see his students succeed. The design of his developed plan of action will allow him to determine whether or not the courses he teaches (Developmental Math II) are effective for the students taking them.
“The summer invested at the University of California, Santa Barbara was probably one of the most life-altering and beneficial investments I could have ever made in a single summer. The UCSB–FAMU Educational Evaluation Research Scholars Program opened my eyes to a new and different standard of graduate school, and my experiences at FAMU are enhanced because of it. As Scholars we were treated like royalty, expected to achieve great things, and, in turn, our performance in this program is one to be remembered.”
Eugene Bellamy Jr. is a native of Bucksport, South Carolina, a small community 24 miles southwest of Myrtle Beach. He has a B.A. in Communication from Coastal Carolina University and he recently graduated with an M.Ed. in Educational Leadership from FAMU. Eugene’s research focuses on at-risk African American males and the impact of community involvement and parental engagement on their academic success. While in the Scholars Program he conducted research on this topic and submitted a final project entitled: “It Takes a Village to Raise a Child: Re-Defining Parental Engagement in a Community’s Involvement in the Academic Success of At-risk African American Males.” He is currently teaching in Marion County, South Carolina.
“While at UCSB this summer, my eyes were opened to many different things. Specifically, I was challenged and faced with a level of rigor that I had never experienced before. This experience helped me accomplish one of my primary goals which was to become a stronger researcher. In order for me to reach this goal, there was a great support network established at UCSB. Dr. Yun, Dr. Marin, Edward, Emilio, Dr. Raley, and Eva were my mentoring committee and they were instrumental in helping me shape and mold my research into the final product. I appreciated my committee because they helped me give voice to my project. Now I am able to effectively engage stakeholders in conversations about the purpose and focus of my research without hesitation. Attending the program also gave me my first experience on the west coast. The greater Los Angeles and Santa Barbara areas were a pleasure to explore.”
Lois Harmon was born and raised in Gainesville, Florida. In April 2012, she graduated from FAMU’s Elementary Education program. As a member of the first cohort of UCSB–FAMU Scholars, Lois developed an individualized research plan and worked alongside her colleagues to develop a logic model for the partnership and program as they engaged in an educational evaluation seminar. In fall 2012, Lois began her graduate program at UCSB. There she will pursue her doctoral degree in Educational Leadership and Organizations. Lois’ commitment to the improvement of elementary education and equitable teaching and learning for all students has sparked her research interests in literacy development at the elementary level. In particular, her research focuses on effective literacy practices for Spanish-speaking English Language Learners in California. As a FAMU pre-service teacher, she aspires to continuously build upon her skill-set with the research that she will conduct at UCSB. As an exemplary professional, Lois aspires to be a teacher-researcher and eventually become an educational administrator.
“Before attending the UCSB–FAMU Educational Evaluation Research Scholars Program, I knew very little about program evaluation and graduate research. This experience exposed me to much more than graduate preparation and program evaluation. Participating in this program allowed me to network with faculty and staff throughout the UC system as well as work and socialize with my FAMU colleagues. Attending the program evaluation seminar and Institute allowed me to learn about the diverse opportunities for research and employment in program evaluation and education. I am now considering program evaluation as a prospective career. My faculty and peer mentors were amazing people who helped me frame my research question and develop my study. Overall, participating in the Scholars Program was a life-changing experience for me. There was no better way for me to prepare for grad school and there is no better graduate school for me to attend. I am forever grateful to FAMU and UCSB for this opportunity of a lifetime!”
Darrius Stanley is a recent graduate of Florida A&M University. He received his B.S. in Social Science Education from the FAMU College of Education. He is very interested in creating an educational environment that focuses on change for students. During the UCSB–FAMU Educational Evaluation Research Scholars Program, Darrius was able to take his first steps into discovering the possibilities that exist for change. He researched the effects of single-sex education on at-risk African American females’ self-perceptions and self-value. This topic was of particular interest to him given the current social climate of schools in the at-risk population, which leaves female students especially vulnerable to the domineering male presence.
“My experience at UCSB this summer was one that I will cherish for a lifetime. Between the continuous collaborations, the bike rides, mountain climbs, theme parks, and learning the ropes of the UC system there was a plethora of activities that have had a permanent impact on my life. The program from the onset was quite rigorous, there were times where I could not see the light at the end of the tunnel, but the continuous positive support from the program facilitators, faculty at UCSB and ultimate support of Mr. Edward Williams, I was able to pull through and reach an accomplishment that will be considered as one of the greatest I have ever achieved. From a professional standpoint, I think that the UC system is the most positive, supportive, and development-driven system/community I have ever had the pleasure to experience. Dr. Marin, Dr. Yun and all of the other faculty and staff were instrumental in building my knowledge base of how to conduct myself in a professional setting. If I had to rename this program I would literally call it, “The Experience” because of its power to transform the mindset of a country boy like myself, from a very old school practical position to a much more critical thinker and analyzer. I thoroughly enjoyed every stitch of California and I encourage any student prepared to start making a difference to do all you can to become a part of it. Get your mind right!”