The Beginning of a Beautiful (Peabody) Relationship
Last semester, I applied for the Peabody Scholars program. I pushed myself all semester to qualify for the GPA of 3.6 or above, and I wrote a brief essay of application. In December I was thrilled to be accepted, along with 14 other students in the Peabody College of Education and Human Development.
What is the program?
In the words of Allena Berry, student of HOD and History (Class of 2012):
“Imagine having  individuals, from all over the country, coming together because of their love of knowledge (and the pursuit thereof). Imagine this same group of individuals, growing and learning together, over a four year time span. Imagine professors who partner up with this group and become intimately connected with the group’s growth as scholars, but most importantly, as people. Now stop imagining. Because this is exactly what the Peabody Scholars program encompasses. These past few years as a Peabody Scholar go far beyond those aforementioned imaginings. The experience has been an integral part of my undergraduate career.”
I am so excited to be a part of this. The first step is a seminar on at-risk groups of students, taught by Dr. Joseph Murphy, a.k.a. Murph.
Murph is the Frank W. Mayborn Chair of Education and Associate Dean at Peabody College, and this semester, he was chosen as Peabody College’s February Professor of the Month for caring about his students and their success in the classroom and life. I know this is true, since when I show up late for class he always asks to make sure if there’s anything going on besides general time/sleep management issues. His unique sense of humor expresses itself through the existence of Ernie, our mascot, and statements like, “I’m here to open doors for you, close doors, push you through doors, point you to the windows, etc.”
This class, HOD 1150, has consisted of weekly two-hour seminars, reflections, and a flexible final project on a topic of our choice. I’m not an education major, but that doesn’t matter. I feel that the topics are interesting for anyone who went to school––ie. everyone in Peabody. So, now I have a foundation in compassionately examining the issues surrounding the education of homeless, low-income, African American, and English Learning students, as well as a group of peers who are hard-working, conscientious, and fun-spirited.
And the best part is that it’s far from over! This is the current plan for the next three years:
• In the spring next year (as sophomores), we will participate in a one-credit seminar examining faculty-led research projects across the College.
• Then, in the summer between sophomore and junior year, Peabody Scholars receive a $5,000 stipend to be used for research, overseas study, or community service.
• Throughout our junior year, we will do an independent research project for class credit alongside a Peabody professor.
• Finally, as seniors, we will go out to restaurants and attend monthly speakers’ events and cultural programs on campus.
The program as a whole “offers a rich array of intellectual opportunities and academic experiences.”
Peabody College Class of 2018: Make sure you look into this program next fall!