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Release: Oct. 4, 2000

UI assistant professor is named Spencer Postdoctoral Fellow

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The National Academy of Education has selected Cynthia Lewis, an assistant professor in the University of Iowa College of Education who teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in the Language, Literacy, and Culture Program, to be a 2000-2001 Spencer Postdoctoral Fellow.

The fellowship recognizes Lewis, who has worked at the UI for four years, for her contributions as a teacher and researcher of developing educational practices. Selected from among more than 200 applicants, Lewis was awarded a $45,000 grant to assist her in her current research project, "Critical Engagement: Multicultural Texts in a Rural Context."

The National Academy of Education established the postdoctoral fellowship in 1986 as a means of enhancing the future of research in education by supporting early-career scholars who demonstrate the potential to make significant contributions with their research.

Fellowship applicants are judged based on past research contributions and a research project proposal.

Lewis is currently working on several research projects that she says focus on the social and political dimensions of selecting, interpreting and teaching multicultural literature and on the social practices surrounding the use of Internet communication among early adolescents.

Lewis has published numerous articles featured in educational journals and has written a book, Social Acts: Literary Practices in a Fifth/Sixth-Grade Classroom. She is also a past recipient of the NCTE Promising Researcher Award and a finalist for the International Reading Association's Outstanding Dissertation Award.