Whiteboard Wednesdays With the NIU College of Education


Wednesday, Jan 13


Early-Career Teacher Support: Huskie-Style


Most people choose teaching because they want to make a difference in students’ lives. Although the profession has its rewards, new teacher attrition ranges from 40% to 50% in the first five years. This statistic, coupled with daily PreK-12 classroom challenges and the shift to remote learning caused by COVID-19, reveals early-career teachers need a community of support more than ever. 


The NIU College of Education’s next Whiteboard Wednesday offering, “Early-Career Teacher Support: Huskie-Style,” addresses the most common challenges faced by early-career teachers in rural, suburban and urban settings. Words of wisdom will come from seven Huskies who hold different roles as professional educators and represent a small group from the 130 contributing authors to “The New Teachers Guide,” recently released by Routledge. The panelists will share not only curated advice about tackling common challenges but also discuss the guide’s just-in-time downloadable resources, including an online community for new teachers using social media connections to educators willing to help.


All are invited to attend this free presentation, held via Zoom from 5 to 6 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 13.


Questions? Please contact Dana King, ’05, at dking1@niu.edu or 815-753-5421.

Huskie presenters include:


Soyini Chism (B.S.Ed.’94, M.S.Ed.’00, Ed.D.’20) is a physical educator at Joliet Central High School who recently graduated with her doctoral degree in Curriculum Leadership. 


Lydia Gerzel-Short (B.A.’89, M.S.Ed.’92, Ed.D.’13) is an assistant professor of Special Education at Northern Illinois University. Her research interests include family engagement and evidence-based practices for supporting diverse learners.


Amie Livengood (M.S.Ed.’17) is a middle school instructional coach in DeKalb, Illinois. She is also a National Board Certified Teacher and adjunct instructor at Northern Illinois University.


Anna M. Quinzio-Zafran (Ed.D.’15) is a graduate faculty scholar in Curriculum and Instruction at Northern Illinois University.


Rashad Talley (Ed.S.’20) is a Chicago Public Schools veteran. He specializes in the professional development and mentorship of teachers as they pursue leadership. He emphasizes equity through student voice.


Raven Talley (B.A.’00) is a Chicago Public Schools administrator. She specializes in coaching new teachers and collaborating with educational professionals as it relates to the social emotional behaviors of young children.


Elizabeth Wilkins is professor of curriculum and instruction and coordinator of Graduate Career and Professional Development at Northern Illinois University.

Event Information

Cost: Free


5:00PM Wed 13 Jan 2021, Central timezone

Virtual Event Instructions:

Zoom meeting information will be sent after you register for this event.