Extraordinary Faculty Award recipients answer front-of-mind questions.

January 2011

1. What is the most exciting advancement in your field right now?

“With healthcare reform, patients will seek care in a variety of settings. So we will see an increase in demand for nursing care outside of such traditional settings as a hospital or clinic.”
—Dr. Mary Tilbury, College of Health Sciences

“We’re seeing a more holistic approach. The courses in our new Ed.D. specialization in Higher Education Leadership will allow students to synthesize, integrate, and better appreciate the whole universe that constitutes contemporary post-secondary education.”
Dr. Edward GartenThe Richard W. Riley College of Education and Leadership
 
“Interpersonal neurobiology. What excites me is the potential for the integration of nonverbal media in the counseling sessions. For example, art, clay, and sand tray interventions complement neural integration by providing a vehicle for accessing and expressing right-brain experiences.”
Dr. Rhonda Neswald-Potter, College of Social and Behavioral Sciences

2. What are the benefits of an advanced degree in your profession or field?

“Advanced degrees open so many doors for nurses. You can be a direct care provider, you can teach, or you can be a manager or an executive. One of the other fields growing significantly is nursing informatics. Walden can prepare nurses to meet this opportunity.”
—Dr. Mary Tilbury, College of Health Sciences
 
“The challenges in American higher education are daunting, and the political and economic environment is unstable at the state and national levels. Administrators and staff, with the skills they can gain by earning a solid terminal degree in higher education leadership, can overcome these challenges.”
—Dr. Edward Garten, The Richard W. Riley College of Education and Leadership

“The Ph.D. in Counselor Education and Supervision is essential for someone aspiring to teach graduate-level counseling courses. A terminal degree also offers opportunities for research not easily attainable for someone who stops at the master’s level.”
—Dr. Rhonda Neswald-Potter, College of Social and Behavioral Sciences

3. What’s the greatest lesson your Walden students have taught you?

“I am amazed at how many balls my students have in the air. The majority of nurses are parents. Many are caring for aging parents. Others occupy leadership roles in community initiatives. And all while working full time.”
—Dr. Mary Tilbury, College of Health Sciences
 
“Many of my Walden students have taught me it’s not my experiences that are brought to the instructional table; rather, it’s their rich career experiences and insights that I appreciate and honor. “One must help students appreciate the values, talents, and experiences they bring to our common learning for much lives in them already.”
—Dr. Edward Garten, The Richard W. Riley College of Education and Leadership

“Teaching at Walden has increased my own levels of compassion and deepened my understanding of the challenges our students overcome every day.”
—Dr. Rhonda Neswald-Potter, College of Social and Behavioral Sciences

4. How do you make sure students are gaining knowledge they can immediately apply?

“Students provide me with a current view of what’s going on in the practice arena by describing and analyzing their roles and responsibilities in classroom activities and assignments. It’s important to me that students truly feel that they are growing and developing and learning information that’s meaningful to them in their job settings.”
—Dr. Mary Tilbury, College of Health Sciences

“Facts and data, while important, are often fleeting. Theory that successfully informs and enlightens practice, however, is almost timeless. I strive to find balance between theory and practice, knowing full well that my students will encounter different circumstances, people, and levels of resources tomorrow, next year, and 10 years from now. I strive to educate for the long haul.”
—Dr. Edward Garten, The Richard W. Riley College of Education and Leadership

“My goal is to help students engage in more progressively complex ways of understanding and create narratives of how that knowledge applies in a professional setting. I look to see whether students are interacting and taking responsibility for their learning and developing coherent debates about both course material and personal meaning.”
—Dr. Rhonda Neswald-Potter, College of Social and Behavioral Sciences