TWU Holmes Scholars establish national footprint

Holmes Scholars at AACTE Conference

March 31, 2022 — DENTON — Texas Woman’s University students have a history of achieving success fast. Maybe that’s why they are called Pioneers.

Kimberly Lawson, a TWU PhD candidate in reading education, is among the latest to serve as a testament to that. In the College of Professional Education’s (COPE) inaugural year of participating in the Holmes Scholars Program, Lawson was voted to national office as the Holmes Scholarship Council Secretary.

“It is an honor to have been chosen by my Holmes Scholarship colleagues from various universities across the U.S.,” Lawson said. “I am so honored they selected me to represent and be a voice for them. I look forward to developing and fostering positive relationships and increasing awareness of the Holmes Scholars and AACTE.”

The scholars program, sponsored by the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE), supports racially and ethnically diverse students pursuing graduate degrees in education by providing mentorship, peer support and professional development opportunities. TWU is the only woman-centric university participating in the program to date.

The program year culminated in the national AACTE Annual Meeting in New Orleans this month. Texas Woman’s students were the stars of the show, according to COPE Associate Dean Gina Anderson, EdD.

Holmes Scholars enjoy time with TWU faculty at AACTE Conference

“Dean Huffman and I received many comments from fellow conference attendees, including AACTE President Lynn Gangone, who remarked how impressed they were by our scholars,” Anderson said. “They stood out in so many ways — by their professionalism, high level of engagement and leadership. Serving as the director of TWU’s Holmes Scholars Program and as one of their mentors has been so rewarding, and I look forward to many more opportunities to share with them.”

All five members of TWU’s inaugural cohort — Phyliciá Anderson, Nicole Hall, Lawson, Kiana Moore and Marilyn Roberts — attended and were impressed with the networking opportunities and tips and motivation on research writing AACTE offered.

Lawson said it was the best conference she has attended while Moore said, “I loved connecting with other scholars who are passionate about the field, and I learned that change impact begins with us as budding researchers and experts.”

Dean Lisa Huffman and Associate Dean Gina Anderson with inaugural Holmes Scholars cohort

In its first year at TWU, the program is already paying dividends. Students mentioned that they would not have the ability or funds to attend conferences that provide so much opportunity for growth, and some even talked about newfound confidence.

“I have gained the confidence to continue in my area of research,” Anderson said. “Being a part of a marginalized group makes it difficult to be the one to stand up and stand out, but the Holmes Scholars program has let me see that I am not alone in my quest for equitable education.”

In addition to national opportunities, Moore talked about how great it is to be a part of TWU’s cohort.

“I have a phenomenal and talented cohort, and I am lucky to work and learn with these women.”

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Page last updated 4:17 PM, March 31, 2022