For over 13 years, Dr. Alkins taught educational psychology and research courses to pre-service and in-service teachers at Queens College in Flushing, NY. She has been in her role as Contributing Faculty at Walden University since November 2011, serving as chair, the second member, and URR on numerous doctoral committees.
She has lived most of her life on the east coast. She obtained a BS from Cornell University in Ithaca, NY, in Agricultural Economics, with a minor in applied economics and business management. Incidentally, she started in Animal Science because she wanted to be a veterinarian but changed her mind. She did not use her degree in Agricultural Economics; instead, her first job out of college was in a nonprofit educational organization working with students who were considered at risk of failing out-of-school. The field of education is where she has remained. In 1994 she got an MA from Teachers College, Columbia University in sociology and education, and in 2002 she got a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in urban education.
Initially, her goal in the field of education was to work with students looking at the achievement gap and the relationship between students’ attitudes about schooling and testing and their academic development. Her focus, especially in research, has been on teachers, who are an important component of the academic success equation. How can teachers be the best that they can be so that they can help students be successful in school?