By Aldon Stiles |Staff Writer|
Associate Professor of psychology at CSUSB Dr. Amanda Wilcox-Herzog was selected along with seven other California State University (CSU) faculty members to participate in the 2015-16 Simms/Mann Think Tank for early childhood education and development.
Each of the 13—five came from other universities—faculty members chosen to attend the Think Tank, held in Beverly Hills on Nov. 8, are considered Faculty Fellows of the Simms/Mann Institute for Education and Community Development.
The Simms/Mann Institute, according to their website, was founded in 2011 to help develop programs that tackle the challenges facing families in the fast-paced world of the twenty-first century.
According to Wilcox-Herzog, “the purpose of this Think Tank was to share the latest neuroscience evidence regarding the development of children from birth through 3 years old and their parents.”
Elizabeth Chapin, public affairs specialist at the CSU Office of the Chancellor, explained why over 60 percent of this year’s Faculty Fellowship were selected from CSU institutions.
“Due to our quality faculty, the CSU is the leading producer of teachers in California,” stated Chapin.
“The CSU is California’s and the nation’s largest producer of teachers, with a yearly average of 6,500 completing the program and earning a California Teaching Credential,” continued Cahpin
Wilcox-Herzog gave a brief description of what the faculty fellows are responsible for.
“Over the next year, Fellows are tasked with bringing this information into their college classrooms as well as infusing neuroscience into a project designed to highlight important issues in working with young children and their families,” Wilcox -Herzog stated.
According to the Simms/Mann Institute, the Fellowship “provides enhanced learning opportunities and advanced study for busy professionals as a means of rekindling their passion.”
Wilcox-Herzog spoke on her passion as well as her more than 30 years of experience in the field.
“I have been involved in policy level initiatives at the state level,” Wilcox-Herzog stated. “I founded and currently supervise the CSUSB Infant/Toddler Lab School and am well regarded as a college instructor who has taught many students interested in working with young children and families.”
Her experience, and subsequently her expertise, in this field is why she was chosen for the Fellowship, according to Wilcox-Herzog.
Wilcox-Herzog stated, “I believe that the Institute was looking for faculty who are involved in the early childhood community and would be able to have wide-range impact at the local and state levels.”
Wilcox-Herzog also shared what she hopes to take from her time as a fellow.
“I am looking forward to expanding on both the information I provide in my college courses as well as my research agenda,” Wilcox-Herzog stated.
“I focus on early childhood teacher beliefs, behaviors, and training, and am excited to try my hand at including biobehavioral measures in my research protocol,” continued Wilcox-Herzog.
Chapin expressed the importance of this Fellowship for CSU institutions.
“The CSU is proud to have so many of our faculty chosen for this prestigious recognition,” Chapin stated. “It is a testament to the CSU’s excellence in teacher education and will also increase the number of teacher education graduates with early childhood expertise.
Wilcox-Herzog expressed the impact her selection will have on the students at CSUSB who are interested in early childhood development and education.
“They will have the opportunity to learn about cutting-edge research in their classes and through my project, which will focus on training of prospective early childhood teachers, they will learn the skills needed to better interact with young children and promote their development,” Wilcox-Herzog stated.