Sherry Pineau Brown: Ph.D. candidate in prevention and intervention, studying how students and teachers understand resilience through childhood adversity

Sherry Pineau Brown has received awards from the Linda N. Lancaster Professional Development Fund three times as a doctoral student in the PreK-12 Education program’s prevention and intervention studies concentration. She has used the funds to travel to state, regional, and national education conferences, where she presented her research on teaching high school students about the concepts of trauma and resilience, as well as how working with students who have experienced trauma can affect educators. Brown also earned her bachelor’s degree and a Certificate of Advanced Studies from University of Maine. She is tentatively set to complete her doctoral studies in 2020 or 2021. Read more about Sherry below.

Waterville, Maine

When not working on my doctoral studies or teaching high school English, I love to read, hike, kayak, and sit on the back deck of our grass-fed beef farm with my husband and daughter.

Bachelor of Science in secondary education (English concentration), University of Maine; Master of Liberal Studies, University of Denver; Certificate of Advanced Studies in literacy education, University of Maine.

What doctoral program are you in at UMaine and when do you expect to graduate?
Ph.D. candidate in prevention and intervention studies, hoping to graduate in the 2020-2021 academic year

In which years were you a Linda N. Lancaster Professional Development Fund awardee?
I applied and received funding in the 2017-2018, 2018-2019, and 2019-2020 academic years.

What were you able to do with the money?
For the first year, I was able to present the Maine Resilience Building Network’s 2nd biennial conference Building Thriving Communities. The second year, I was able to travel to Portsmouth, New Hampshire to present at NEERO (the New England Education Research Organization) on a pilot study that I conducted involving teaching resilience through trauma using Khaled Hosseini’s “The Kite Runner.” Most recently, the funds allowed me to travel to Baltimore to present on teaching resilience through trauma using ELA texts at the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) annual conference.

How has the fund supported and enhanced your research, professional contacts and experiences as a doctoral student?
The Lancaster fund has been a wonderful opportunity to connect with professionals across the country who share my passion for both my area of research interest and research in general.

Describe your doctoral research:
I have two main areas of interest for my research. The first is teaching high school students about the concepts of resilience through trauma using curriculum that they already use in their classrooms. My second area of interest is understanding the impact that working with students who have experienced childhood adversity can have on educators.

Why UMaine?
I am a Mainer through-and-through and a Black Bear for 25 years! I love the natural beauty of the campus and the multitude of opportunities that the school has to offer.

Have you had any mentors or advisors during your time at UMaine who have helped you grow academically and/or personally?
I have had so many faculty that have helped me on my journey thus far. Jim Artesani, Catharine Biddle, Sid Mitchell, Susan Bennett-Armistead and Craig Mason, to name just a few. Each of them have helped me look at my areas of interest in research in a new way, and I am grateful to them.