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Melody Russell, Alumni Professor and professor of science education in Auburn’s College of Education, was recently appointed to be a visiting scholar at Teachers College, Columbia University in New York City this fall as part of her professional improvement leave.

“It is an honor to visit and collaborate with top scholars in science education relative to strategies that promote equity in science teaching and broadening participation in STEM for traditionally underrepresented groups,” Russell said.

Her current and future work to develop and expand existing resources for teaching from a lens of equity and multicultural education across diverse settings will have significant impact well beyond Auburn’s campus.

“Dr. Russell is an outstanding faculty member and campus leader,” said Jeffrey T. Fairbrother, dean of the College of Education and Wayne T. Smith Distinguished Professor. “Her work in science education has established her as a leader in teacher preparation. We are excited to see her recognized with a visiting scholar appointment at Teachers College.”

Russell’s international reputation in her field, research and work to advance STEM education access for traditionally underrepresented groups in science education laid the groundwork for her appointment.

“Teachers College is one of the most prestigious colleges of education in the world,” said Paul Fitchett, professor and head of the College of Education’s Department of Curriculum and Teaching. “Dr. Russell’s visiting scholar appointment is a massive honor for her and a boon for Auburn’s College of Education.”

During her professional improvement leave, she also will serve as a guest speaker at the University of Georgia in Athens and collaborate with her mentor, Mary Atwater, an eminent top scholar in the field of science education and a professor in the Department of Mathematics, Science and Social Studies Education at the University of Georgia. Russell will also collaborate with top scholars at Lehman College in the Bronx, New York, Howard University and American University, both in Washington D.C.