From the Dean, Summer 2015

Camilla Benbow (John Russell)

Peabody College is many things.

We are a research powerhouse, a leader among schools of education and a producer of professionals and academic scholars. Yet undergraduate education remains at the heart of the college’s mission. Undergraduates are the primary beneficiaries of the research, discovery and excellent teaching of the Peabody faculty—and of a philosophy of education that puts knowledge to work.

This includes students in our longtime, practice-oriented major of human and organizational development. Students along with parents and alumni appreciate this program’s blend of organizational theory with opportunities to bridge learning to working in real-world settings.

I am often amazed to learn of the internships arranged by HOD majors for their capstone experiences. We are excited to highlight several of these students and their internships in this issue. I hope you will be as impressed as I am!

One of the most important developments at Peabody in the last year was the incorporation of Vanderbilt’s Center for Science Outreach under the Peabody umbrella. For many years, the center has promoted STEM literacy through partnerships with the preK-12 education community.

The center’s concern with pedagogy made it a natural fit for Peabody and the ongoing work of the Department of Teaching and Learning. One of center’s primary initiatives has been the School for Science and Math at Vanderbilt. Our article on the SSMV will help acquaint readers with the remarkable accomplishments of talented high school students occurring on the ground floor of the Wyatt Center.

As we strive to improve the learning of all students, scientific methods are unlocking the mysteries of how children learn and how we can help students who struggle.

In the fall, several of us had the opportunity to talk with members of the Vanderbilt Board of Trust about our trans-institutional program in educational neuroscience. This program would not be possible without Vanderbilt’s investments across the university in neuroimaging technology and faculty who are dedicated to understanding how the brain works in those with reading difficulties.

I hope you enjoy these stories, as well as our roundup of campus news and profiles of fascinating alumni who are making an impact on those around them. Feel free to take this copy with you to the beach—just be sure to send us a photo at!

Camilla Benbow
Patricia and Rodes Hart Dean of Education and Human Development