Lutrill and Pearl Payne School of Education Well-represented at 2022 Mid-South Educational Research Association Conference: Doctoral Candidate and Recent Graduate Recognized for His Dissertation Research

January 17, 2023

BATON ROUGE, LA - The Lutrill and Pearl Payne School of Education doctoral candidate, Dr. Nathan (Nate) Hite, was recently recognized for the caliber of his dissertation research at the annual Mid-South Educational Research Association (MSERA) Conference. Hite was in the final data analysis phase of his dissertation study when he was being considered for the award, the MSERA Research-in-Progress Award. Hite, who graduated December 16, 2022, with his PhD, was investigating the essential components of field experiences and internships provided by principal preparation programs that contribute most to principal effectiveness, increasing the likelihood of public school districts hiring principal candidates who are equipped with the skills necessary to step into the position with minimal on-the-job training. His research illuminates the importance of principal preparation as learning more about these experiences will assist districts and preparation programs with future programming decisions. Dr. Hite is an assistant principal at Scotlandville Middle in the East Baton Rouge Parish School System. The MSERA is a nonprofit incorporated educational organization whose purposes are to encourage quality educational research in the Mid-South and to promote the application of the results of quality educational research in the schools, representing Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Tennessee.
At the MSERA Conference, held in Little Rock, Arkansas in November, 2022, Hite presented his then on-going work in a session titled, “Experience That Works: An Investigation Uncovering Essential Elements of Field Experiences and Internships within Principal Preparation Programs that Significantly Impact and Contribute to Principal Effectiveness.” Hite stated, “The internship and field experiences are an inherent aspects of traditional leader preparation programs; however, the rigor and purpose of this experience varies based on programs. Leadership internships and field experiences have emerged as crucial activities because once in a leadership position, very little on-the-job training exists.” Given the state’s recent shortage of teachers and consider that principals typically come from the teaching ranks, Hite’s work is fresh and cutting edge. Dr. Margaret-Mary Sulentic Dowell, Hite’s major professor commented, “A significant piece of what is missing from the discussion on principal preparation are both the quality and extent of internship and field experiences prior to being appointed as a campus principal. Nate’s mixed-methods investigation is truly significant as it explores this phenomenon in three different sites, Louisiana, North Carolina, and West Virginia.”
Dr. Laura Hensley Choate, Interim Director of the LSU Lutrill and Pearl Payne School of Education stated, "The Lutrill and Pearl Payne School of Education is proud of Dr. Nate Hite for his outstanding dissertation research which garnered special attention at the recent Mid-South Educational Research Association Conference in Little Rock. His research is critical to our understanding of what works in the School's educational leadership preparation programs.  Congratulations to Dr. Hite and his major dissertation professor, Dr. Margaret-Mary Sulentic Dowell, for this recognition. Kudos to all the School of Education students, alums, and faculty who expertly represented the Lutrill and Pearl Payne School of Education at this conference". 
LSU’s Lutrill and Pearl Payne School of Education was well-represented at the conference as Hite and three additional School of Education doctoral students, two alums, and faculty also presented original research. Those students included Dr. Denise Shillingsburg Rueter (December 2022 graduate) who presented “Are Teachers Prepared for Writing? Insight on the Training and Development of Teachers for Writing Instruction in K-2 Classrooms” and Mr. Constant Mucika, who presented on “The Effect of English-Medium-of Instruction Policy on Primary and Secondary School Pupils in Rwanda.” Two recent School of Education graduates also presented: Dr. Franklin Soares, “Does My Mind Matter Here? Black Male Student's Mental Health at PWIs: A Literature Review” and Dr. Kimberly Davis who presented two sessions, “White Fraternity Members’ Conceptualization of Hazing Severity and Prevalence” with her major professor, Yu Chen, and “Messier Than What You Might Expect: Graduate Student Reflections on Conducting Course-based Mixed Methods Research,” with LSU Librarian and current School of Education doctoral candidate, Ms. Gina Costello.

About Lutrill and Pearl Payne LSU School of Education (SOE) 
A school of the College of Human Sciences & Education, the SOE offers undergraduate programs for students who want to pursue a career as a pre-kindergarten through 12th grade teacher or acquire dual certification in both traditional elementary and special education classrooms. Besides providing graduate certification in Instructional Coaching, educational technology, and urban & community education, the SOE offers a writing pedagogy minor, and a master’s degree in arts, arts in teaching, education (MEd), education in counseling (MEd), certificate of education specialist (EdS) and PhD. The School’s mission is to prepare educational professionals to be leaders, practitioners, and scholars knowledgeable in contemporary educational issues.  
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About LSU College of Human Sciences & Education (CHSE)
The College of Human Sciences & Education (CHSE) is a nationally accredited division of Louisiana State University. The college is comprised of the School of Education, the School of Kinesiology, the School of Leadership & Human Resource Development, the School of Library & Information Science, the School of Social Work, and the University Laboratory School. These combined schools offer 8 undergraduate degree programs, 18 graduate programs, and 7 online graduate degree and/or certificate programs, enrolling more than 1,900 undergraduate and 1,120 graduate students. The College is committed to achieving the highest standards in teaching, research, and service and is committed to improving quality of life across the lifespan. 
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