Education Runs in the Family for Cheyney University's 2013 Lindback Scholar--Professor Shelly Weeks-Channel
October 25, 2013
Cheyney University’s 2013 Lindback Scholar--Professor Shelly Weeks-Channel
Cheyney University’s 2013 Lindback Scholar, a distinguished teaching honor that has gone to outstanding faculty for nearly a decade, is Professor Shelly Weeks-Channel, who is humbled by the honor. She calls it "a confirmation that my work as an educator is highly regarded and contributes to the overall success of the university."
Dr. Weeks-Channel’s upbeat nature and endless energy is an inspiration to many. Her gifts were evident at an early age. While a student at Philadelphia’s Dobbins High School, she was vice president of her class, worked on the school newspaper and performed with the color guard. When she came to Cheyney’s campus as an undergraduate, Dr. Weeks-Channel found outlets for those talents and more. “The campus was a busy place in the late 70’s with over 3000 students,” she recalls. As a member of the Drama Guild, she performed more than a dozen roles, and also worked as a Resident’s Assistant (RA), was a senior class officer and Homecoming Queen. “My sisters, Holly and Joan, attended Cheyney as well. We were Academic Dean’s List students and participated vigorously in campus activities,” she proudly remembers. All three went on to follow in their mother’s footsteps by becoming teachers.
After graduating from Cheyney summa cum laude, Weeks-Channel accepted a teaching position with the Clark County School District in Nevada. “I was interested in relocating to a new area,” she explains. “The district was recruiting minorities, and it offered wonderful opportunities.” Weeks-Channel started at Garside Junior High School teaching special education for students with severe disabilities. She advanced through the system, working as a classroom teacher in specialized classroom environments, followed by stints as dean of students, assistant principal, elementary school principal and eventually, high school principal.
Through the years, Weeks-Channel continued her education, achieving a Master of Education in educational administration, a Specialist in Education in Special Education and a Doctor of Philosophy in sociology, all with honors, from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
After her distinguished career in the Clark County School District, Weeks-Channel, her husband, G.T., and their two adult children, Genaye and Sean, moved to Pennsylvania, but her teaching days were far from over. “In 2006, Dr. Beatrice Johnson and Professor Sonny Harris, professors I studied with as an undergrad, encouraged me to return to Cheyney to teach.”
Looking back, “Cheyney prepared me well,” she insists. “I was determined to succeed. Even now, the student body will succeed. The students have such resilience.”
When it comes to the faculty and staff at CU, Weeks-Channel, the new Chair for the Department of Education and Leadership Studies, acknowledges that she works with some wonderful people. “I have a great deal of respect for my colleagues. They go above and beyond to assist students and ensure their success. It’s admirable.”
The Montgomery County, PA resident is active with Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. and Operation ReachBack, Inc. Her professional affiliations include American Sociological Association, the American Association for Teaching and Curriculum, the Council for Exceptional Children, the National Association of Elementary School Principals, the National Association of Secondary School Principals, and the National Education Foundation.
Dr. Weeks-Channel's research centers on teaching styles related to the development of instructional model innovation. Other areas of focus include critical thinking, empowerment, persistence and resiliency of Black males, entrepreneurship through social networks, healthy lifestyles, millennials, the sociology of education, and staff development. She has received many honors and awards for her work in education.