Tarleton Well Represented at ISEB Annual Conference

STEPHENVILLE, Texas — Several Tarleton areas collaborated to present at the International Society for Educational Biography’s annual conference last week in San Antonio.

Dr. Lora Helvie-Mason, Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs and Professor of communication, chaired and was a participant in the session “Self in the struggle: Educator self-image, work and value amidst change.” 

Additional Tarleton panelists included Juana Moncada, Assistant Director of Residence Life; Stephanie Sharpe, Assistant Director for Athletic Performance; and Dr. Jim Gentry, Director of Instructional Development and Course Design and Professor of curriculum and instruction. 

Panelists focused on the duality of personal and professional lives while striving to meet students’ needs during the pandemic. Their papers offered insights into the cultural forces that shape the individual and the environment from various educational perspectives. 

Additional Tarleton presenters included Prairie Endres-Parnell, Instructor in communication studies, and Dr. Rebekah Miller-Levy, Associate Professor of curriculum and instruction. Together, they presented works on privilege and innovative approaches to examining privilege in educational spaces and youth-focused literature. 

Endres-Parnell was elected treasurer of the organization. She follows Helvie-Mason, who served over a decade in the position.  

Helvie-Mason said it was challenging to believe that what started as a temporary role transitioned to years of professional service.

“That’s the great thing about academic organizations that align with your areas of research. They begin to feel like a home,” she said. “I first presented at ISEB in 2005 as a doctoral student and feel grateful for the career and scholarly growth experienced year after year with this organization.”  

The International Society for Educational Biography explores the intersection of biography and education with emphasis on life writing, ethnography, autoethnography, biography, memoir, oral history and popular culture. 

This year’s conference theme was “Life Writing in Historic Times.” The 2023 ISEB conference will be in Oklahoma City. 

A founding member of The Texas A&M University System, Tarleton is breaking records — in enrollment, research, scholarship, athletics, philanthropy and engagement — while transforming the lives of more than 15,000 students in Stephenville, Fort Worth, Waco, Midlothian, A&M RELLIS at Bryan and online. True to Tarleton’s values of excellence, integrity, and respect, academic programs emphasize real world learning and address regional, state and national needs.