DENTON (UNT), Texas — Jenny Wakefield of Plano, a doctoral student at the University of North Texas, has received one of two 2013 Joseph E. Pryor Graduate Fellowships from Alpha Chi National College Honor Society. The organization recognizes academic excellence in juniors, seniors and graduate students at U.S. colleges and universities. Students must be ranked academically among the top 10 percent of their graduating classes to be considered for membership at their institutions’ Alpha Chi chapters.
Wakefield, who is starting her third year in the UNT Department of Learning Technologies’ doctoral degree program, will receive $5,000 for her fellowship. She was inducted into the UNT Eta chapter of Alpha Chi in 2007, when she was an undergraduate majoring in applied technology and performance improvement
Wakefield transferred to UNT from Collin College in Plano, where she earned an associate of applied science degree in e-business media in 2003 and an associate of arts degree in communications in 2005. She received her bachelor’s degree from UNT in applied technology and performance improvement in 2007 and a master’s degree from UNT in instructional design in 2010.
She is a teaching fellow at UNT and a mentor for students in the Department of Learning Technologies’ new online accelerated master’s program, which allows students to take 12 online courses in 14 months toward the master’s degree in learning technologies. She has conducted research on social media, virtual worlds, and games and their use in formal higher education learning with Scott Warren, associate professor of learning technologies. The two have published six book chapters, two journal articles and many conference papers and presentations on these topics.
This fall, Wakefield will begin researching the use of alternative reality games and transmedia storytelling in formal higher education learning for her dissertation. She will receive her doctoral degree in learning technologies in May 2015 and plans to become a professor of instructional design.
Only two national Pryor Fellowships are given each year, and students must be members of their college or university chapters of Alpha Chi to qualify. The chapters may nominate one student for a fellowship. Wakefield was nominated for her fellowship by Jeanne Tunks, associate professor of teacher education and administration and faculty sponsor of the Eta chapter.
One of the Pryor Fellowships provides $5,000 to a student in a doctoral program who has completed at least two years of graduate or professional study beyond a bachelor’s degree. The other provides $3,000 to a student in the first or second year of a graduate or professional degree program.
Note to editors: A photo of Jenny Wakefield may be downloaded here.