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(Posted 4-25-02)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Steve Gilliam, 336-334-5371

School of Education Graduate Programs, Counseling Program Move Up
In U.S. News & World Report Rankings

GREENSBORO--The School of Education and its counselor education program at The University of North Carolina at Greensboro have moved up in the rankings of the nation’s best graduate programs, according to new published rankings by U.S. News and World Report magazine for 2002-2003.
Dr. Dale Schunk
Dr. Patricia Sullivan

The Department of Counseling and Educational Development ranked third and the School of Education was ranked 29th among graduate schools of education across the nation. This marks the eighth straight year that UNCG’s School of Education has been ranked in the top 50 graduate schools of education in the U. S. by the magazine. UNCG’s ranking rose to 29th from a tie for 33rd place in last year’s rankings.

Only two schools of education in North Carolina placed in the top 50 in the rankings, with the UNC-Chapel Hill School of Education ranked 24th nationally--a drop from 18th place last year. Overall, the magazine ranked 188 graduate schools of education programs that grant the Ph.D. or Ed.D. degrees.

UNCG officials said that the continued high ranking by the School of Education reflects its leadership role in public education in the state and region. UNCG’s teacher education programs were ranked as the state’s best for the second straight year in the State Department of Public Instruction report on teacher preparation in the state. That leadership in education traces back to 1892 when the institution opened to train teachers as the State Normal and Industrial School.

UNCG Chancellor Patricia Sullivan, said of the rankings, "These rankings re-confirm that we have one of the finest schools of education in the country, and that our counseling program is a national leader in that field. The school and the University are meeting their obligations to inspire and lead improvement in education at the local, regional and national levels. It’s a real distinction to be so highly ranked."

Dr. Dale Schunk, the school’s dean, said, "We are very please that our School of Education is ranked 29th in the country. It is noteworthy that every institution ranked higher than UNCG is either a flagship public institution or an elite private school. This ranking reflects the dedication of our faculty to create the finest School of Education. Last year, we were ranked number 33. I have no doubt that our stature will be increasingly noticed nationwide, which will help us continue to attract high-quality faculty and students.

"The fact that our counseling program ranked number three in the nation similarly reflects extreme faculty dedication and shows that this now is one of the nation's premiere programs. I am very proud of their efforts to create this exemplary program."

Dr. Maureen Grasso, interim dean of the Graduate School, said, "These rankings not only enhance our national reputation for graduate education, but also assist us in recruiting the best qualified students to our programs. The rankings reflect the long-standing commitment of quality graduate education at UNCG.  Furthermore, the rankings reflect the excellent faculty and their dedication to graduate programs at UNCG."

The Department of Counseling and Educational Development has programs in community counseling, marriage and family counseling, gerontological counseling, school counseling, and student development in higher education at the master's level, as well as doctoral study in counseling and counselor education. Its programs all have full national accreditation.  Graduates are employed in a variety of school, community, and university settings, both locally and nationally.

The department has provided leadership to the counseling field in numerous ways.  Five of the 10 current faculty members have served as editors of national journals and seven have been elected to national leadership positions within the counseling profession. Current funded research projects and programs include research on enhancing girls' self-efficacy in math and science careers, violence prevention in the Washington, D.C. schools, treatment programs for sexually abused adolescent girls, and factors affecting the academic success of undergraduate students-of-color. Faculty have received numerous awards for their research, service, student mentoring, and teaching. Three national counseling organizations—the National Board for Certified Counselors, Chi Sigma Iota, and the Educational Resources Information Center/Clearinghouse on Counseling and Student Services—are located in Greensboro and are affiliated with the program.  The department was twice recognized in the 1990s as having the nation’s top counseling program.

The UNCG School of Education offers degrees at the undergraduate, master’s and doctoral levels, and is one of six professional schools at UNCG. During the 2001-2002 year, the school has an overall enrollment of more than 1,600 students, including 750 undergraduate student majors and 900 graduate majors.

The school has approximately 55 full-time faculty members. Its six departments are counseling and educational development, curriculum and instruction, educational leadership and cultural foundations, educational research methodology, library and information studies and specialized education services. In addition, it also has a Teachers Academy and three professional centers: the Center for School Accountability, Center for Educational Studies and Development and Center for Educational Research and Evaluation. The school has a Professional Development Schools program for students majoring in elementary and middle grades education.

The school has been awarded more than $80 million in federal contracts since 1990 to operate the southeastern regional education laboratory at SERVE that assists state and local educators at the K-12 level in a six-state area in the Southeast.

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