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2 College of Education Faculty Join the Friday Institute as 2021-2023 Faculty Fellows

RALEIGH, N.C. — NC State College of Education Assistant Professors Adria Shipp Dunbar, Ph.D., and Erin Krupa, Ph.D., have been selected to serve two-year terms as 2021-2023 Friday Institute faculty fellows, beginning in August 2021, at the Friday Institute for Educational Innovation. Friday Institute (FI) faculty fellows, who are nominated and approved by the Friday Institute and their College of Education departments, serve on the Friday Institute leadership team, provide leadership and direction for the Friday Institute and contribute to the overall intellectual life of the Friday Institute.

“We are delighted to welcome two new FI fellows, Drs. Erin Krupa and Adria Dunbar, from the College of Education,” said Hiller Spires, Ph.D., executive director of the Friday Institute and associate dean in the NC State College of Education. “The fellows contribute to the synergistic relationship between the FI and the college in terms of our research and outreach agendas.” 

Each year, College of Education faculty are invited to affiliate with the Friday Institute based on alignment with the Friday Institute mission. Three types of affiliations are available, each with different levels of engagement with the Friday Institute: Friday Institute scholars, Friday Institute faculty fellows and Friday Institute faculty senior fellows. 

Learn more about these two new faculty fellows below:

Adria Shipp Dunbar, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Counselor Education; Department of Educational Leadership, Policy, and Human Development

Adria Shipp Dunbar, Ph.D., focuses her primary research interests on utilizing a STEM School Counselor Collaboration Model to ensure school counselors are prepared to serve the needs of all students and are aware of the potential for implicit bias to impact post-secondary career counseling for students from historically underrepresented populations in STEM careers. Additionally, Dunbar focuses on developing educational technologies for counselor education and supervision, promoting digital health and citizenship for K-12 students, and diffusion of innovations in educational environments.

Her work at the Friday Institute will continue these efforts, including working on four software development projects for counselor education and supervision related to improving suicide assessment training for school counselors using virtual reality and artificial intelligence (AI), increasing STEM access and participation for historically underrepresented groups, promoting 1:1 learning environments for counselor education programs and improving learning outcomes during master’s level counseling field experiences. She has previously worked with the Friday Institute’s Math/Science Education Network (MSEN) Pre-College Program through an NSF ITEST grant as well as through collaborative service learning projects in which school counselors in training have the opportunity to volunteer their time to work with students enrolled in the MSEN program.

“I look forward to further understanding how school counselors can help facilitate middle school and high school STEM access and interest,” said Dunbar. “I also look forward to finding new collaborators who share similar research interests.”

Erin Krupa, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Mathematics and Statistics Education; Department of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Education 

Erin Krupa, Ph.D., strives to make quality mathematics education more equitable to all students by researching the design, dissemination and effectiveness of curricular materials and innovative professional development for mathematics educators and studying teachers’ implementation of instructional materials. Krupa is currently the principal investigator (PI) on three innovative interdisciplinary NSF-sponsored curricular projects, including a Discovery Research PreK-12 program (DRK-12) grant to develop animated digital curricular materials to improve the learning of middle school geometry content, an ITEST grant to develop a set of nine design challenges to engage students in authentic STEM problems (formerly led by fellow College of Education faculty Jere Confrey, Ph.D.), and an EHR Core grant to create a repository that categorizes and describes quantitative instruments used in mathematics education contexts. In addition, she is a co-principal investigator on two NSF-sponsored grants: a five-year Noyce grant that provides professional development for high school teachers working in high-need areas and an interdisciplinary DRK-12 grant with Spires to research materials designed to support students’ science content knowledge through the PBI Global project.

Although she hasn’t confirmed which projects she will work on at the Friday Institute, Krupa is excited about the possibility of contributing to the Friday Institute’s school partnership projects, including those with Centennial Campus Magnet Middle School. Her research projects focus on improving the quality of mathematics learning and engagement through the design and dissemination of innovative curricular materials. 

“When I visit the Friday Institute, I feel a strong sense of community,” said Krupa. “I feel like I could both contribute to the community in meaningful ways and learn from the community in ways that would support my growth as a researcher.”

The Friday Institute for Educational Innovation brings together researchers, practitioners, and policymakers to lead the transition to next-generation education systems that will prepare students for success in the digital-age world. It conducts research, develops educational resources, provides professional development programs for educators, advocates to improve teaching and learning, and helps inform policymaking. The Friday Institute is a part of the NC State College of Education. Visit to learn more.