Winthrop University: College of Education -

Dr. Jennie Rakestraw

College of Education

Message from the Dean

The Richard W. Riley College of Education enjoys a long and successful history of preparing teachers and leaders for work in and beyond schools, and today that tradition continues. Our faculty partner with nine South Carolina school districts to improve high-needs schools, enhance teacher quality, and increase student learning. Through initiatives supported by several large federal grants, our reputation as a leader in educator preparation continues to expand. Our programs continue to be innovative and responsive to the challenges of today's schools. We prepare teachers and school leaders using a clinical approach, providing opportunities for students to develop strong content knowledge and skills in the areas of teaching diverse learners, assessment, literacy, and technology. Recently we renovated the Withers/W.T.S. building and created model 21st century teaching and learning spaces. State-of-the-art technology is available to support collaborative, personalized, and project-based learning. Winthrop is definitely the place to be for those who want to teach!

We are a college that prepares other types of professionals as well. We offer excellent programs in athletic training, exercise science, human development & family studies, and sport management. Our students benefit from state-of-the-art facilities and faculty members who are committed to their success in the major and in their careers. We are witnessing dramatic growth in these programs, a testament to the quality of professional preparation that our students receive.

At the graduate level, we offer an array of master's programs that are relevant and responsive. We offer programs in counseling and development (school and agency), teacher leadership, educational leadership, literacy, middle level education, special education, and sport and fitness administration.

In addition to our academic programs, we are committed to working with schools and communities through outreach and research activities. The Jim and Sue Rex Institute for Educational Renewal and Partnerships serves a vital role in the College of Education to facilitate collaboration and innovation as we engage with schools, school districts, and other educational leadership partners.

What is it that contributes to our success? Our commitments.
We are committed to leadership, stewardship, collaboration, and innovation; and these ideals increasingly exemplified in everything that we do. We care about schools and student learning; and we are fully invested in preparing professionals who have the knowledge, skills, and dispositions to meet the challenges faced by educators today. These are exciting times for the Richard W. Riley College of Education.

I encourage you to take a journey through our website and learn more about us.


Jennie F. Rakestraw, Ed.D.
Dean, College of Education


Last Updated: 6/29/21