Meet Allan Cook
- B.S. Elementary Education: Eastern Illinois University
- M.S. Education (Reading): Eastern Illinois University
- Ed.D. Teacher Education: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
- I was born in central Illinois, and am the first member of my family to attend college. I’ve wanted to be a teacher ever since I was in fourth grade, so that dream’s about fifty years old now. I’ve taught at about every grade level in public and private schools, and even taught music for about four years. Working with prospective teachers has definitely been the best experience, though.
- I serve as director of the CEHS Council on Professional Education
- I am President-Elect of the Illinois Association of Colleges of Teacher Education
- I am the Co-Chair of the UIS Safe Zone program.
- Learning is a two-way street. As instructors we are not the ultimate authority, the “dispenser of knowledge”. While I have a wealth of experience to draw upon, I believe I also learn a great deal from my students. The majority of my students are not the traditional 18 or 19 year olds, but individuals who’ve gone out into the world and experienced life. Many have families; some have had other careers, and all of them bring a wealth of experience as well. As the instructor it is my function to serve as a facilitator who structures activities that allow them to draw upon the expertise and knowledge they already possess and make connections with any new information I may provide.
- Social Justice, especially issues relative to gay and lesbian students, and children of gay and lesbian parents in the classroom and creating Safe School Environments (anti-bullying)
Major project underway:
- I’m planning to replicate a study I conducted twenty years ago regarding attitudes and beliefs concerning men in early childhood and elementary education. It should be interesting to see if there have been any changes.
Advice to prospective students:
- Take advantage of all the opportunities UIS has to offer you, smaller classes, instructors who know your name, and student life to name a few. Get to know your advisor; never be afraid to ask them about what you don’t understand or need help with, they are your strongest ally. And always, always, schedule some “ME” time in your day, to relax, reflect and recharge. Your time at UIS may be the best time of your life.
Best thing about UIS:
- The people, students, staff, faculty, and administrators. The pride in UIS always shines through.