ROCK HILL, S.C. - Winthrop University has selected Linda Winter, assistant professor of education, for its Singleton Endowed Professorship in Teacher Education to help increase retention of teacher candidates in the institution’s education program.
In announcing the appointment, Winthrop President Anthony DiGiorgio noted: “As a faculty member for South Carolina’s flagship of teacher preparation, Dr. Winter is eager to prepare our students as the next generation of teachers. This endowed professorship was created with just such professors in mind.”
Those named as the Singleton Endowed Professorship are selected on a basis of a strong record for scholarship of discovery and application of knowledge and teaching.
Winter will be the fifth Winthrop education faculty member to hold the Singleton Professorship. Others have been Margaret Johnson, Jonatha Vare, Susan Green and most recently, Carol Marchel. The professorship will begin this fall and last for up to three years.
The professorship first became available at Winthrop in 1994 through a $100,000 endowment. It was subsequently named the Singleton Endowed Professorship in Teacher Education for the late Elizabeth Singleton ‘46 of Myrtle Beach, S.C., a Winthrop alumna and member of Winthrop’s Board of Trustees who passed away in 2000.
Winter joined the Winthrop faculty in 2005 after working 25 years in public education. She also has experience as an administrator of alternative education programs and director of student affairs, which she draws on to teach courses in educational psychology, at-risk students and human development at Winthrop.
Winter anticipates using her time as a Singleton Endowed Professor for her work on the “BRACE Study: Breaking the Attrition Cycle in Education.” The aim of her research is to increase the retention and success rates of students in Winthrop’s teacher education program, including those from underrepresented groups.
She will identify a major intervention point in the attrition cycle and develop a program to provide early intervention to struggling students when behavioral and social problems hurt their academic performance or professional dispositions. This will help reverse the trend over the last three years of fewer African American students advancing from freshman through senior years and graduation in teacher education.
“Dr. Winter’s extensive background as a school psychologist and her interest in student success makes her the ideal person to tackle this project. She is very student oriented and, I believe, her work as the Singleton Professor will benefit many teacher education majors and enhance their chances of success in becoming a highly qualified teacher,” said Jennie Rakestraw, dean of the Richard W. Riley College of Education.
Winter holds a Ph.D. in educational psychology from the University of Georgia.