Seven students set to receive Doctor of Education degrees, highest in school history

By GSU Media Bureau

Grambling State University’s School of Graduate Studies and Research will make history at the 2017 fall commencement on Friday (Dec. 15) as seven students earn doctorates in developmental education (Ed.D.). GSUSlyHoodingPracticeDec132017.DSC_7098 copy

The ceremony begins at 10 a.m. at the Fredrick C. Hobdy Assembly Center, 100 North Stadium Drive, Grambling State University, Grambling, LA. The Ed.D. graduates are among the 350 graduates who head out into the world where they will join thousands of GSU alumni.

One of the doctoral candidates, Kevin Sly, a GSU business college faculty member, said he is blessed to have had such success.

“I still remember my humble beginnings and where I came from,” he said. “Though I grew up in Kansas City, Missouri, in the St. Rest and Chatham communities. I’m just a country boy trying to be the best he can be.”

Sly said he is thankful that his family and friends have stuck with him throughout his matriculation while taking graduate courses and teaching. “My wife, children, grandchildren and family members have been my greatest inspiration.  Because of them, I pushed myself,” he added. “I didn’t want to let them down.”

“All my professors from my undergraduate Computer Science program, to my major professor in the doctoral program, have been more than I can ask for!
There’s no place like GSU!”
2017 Ed.D. doctoral candidates, dissertation titles and major professors

Rosemary Agbor, Austell, GA

Dissertation Title: The Impact of Prison-Based Education Programs on Recidivism

Major Professor: Vernon L. Farmer, Ph.D.


Mary Jane Cahee, Ruston, LA

Dissertation Title: Perceptions of African American Male Students Utilizing Learning Assistance Centers at Predominantly White Institutions

Major Professor: Andolyn B. Harrison, Ph.D.


Christine Crowder, St. Louis, MO

Dissertation Title: An Analysis of Selected Demographic Factors on the Counseling Needs of At-Risk High School Students in an Urban School District

Major Professor: Andolyn B. Harrison, Ph.D.


Rudolph Ellis, Belize City, Belize

Dissertation Title: Student Narratives in Experiential Learning: Exploring Students’ Perceptions on Personal Growth, Academic Performance and Career Readiness Based on Internship and Practicum Courses

Major Professor: Vernon L. Farmer, Ph.D.


Cynthia Hester, Shreveport, LA

Dissertation Title: An Exploratory Study of Money Goals and Personal Finance: Knowledge of Traditional and Non-Traditional Developmental Students at Two Historically Black Colleges and Universities

Major Professor: Andolyn B. Harrison, Ph.D.


Robin Ozz, Phoenix, AZ

M.S. – Arizona State University, 1980

B.A. – Arizona State University, 1975

Dissertation Title: Student Perceptions of Necessary Elements for Success in an Online Developmental English Course

Major Professor: Andolyn B. Harrison, Ph.D.


Kevin Sly, Ruston, LA

M.A. – Webster University, 1994

B.A. – Grambling State University, 1983

Dissertation Title: A Phenomenological Qualitative Study of the Lived Experiences of First Year African-American Students Majoring in Business at Grambling State University

Major Professor: Vernon L. Farmer, Ph.D.