The Foundation for Child Development’s inaugural Promising Scholars are Young Scholars Program applicants who demonstrate exceptional potential to conduct rigorous, high-quality implementation research focused on the early care and education workforce. In collaboration with the Urban Institute, our 2020 Promising Scholars will receive resources and supports to assist in further refining their research skills and knowledge.

Announcing the 2020 Promising Scholars

Tia N. Barnes,  Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Human Development and Family Sciences 
University of Delaware

Research Interest Area: Professional development training and coaching in inclusive preschool classrooms to improve teacher-assistant teacher collaboration

“I am excited to be a part of the Foundation’s Promising Scholars Program because it will provide an opportunity to connect with mentors in my interest area and strengthen both my research and grant writing skills as an early career scholar.”

Jayanti Owens,  Ph.D.

Senior Assistant Professor, International and Public Affairs and Sociology 
Brown University

Research Interest Area: Racial/ethnic disparities in elementary school disciplinary practices and professional development methods to reduce bias in teaching and disciplinary practices

“I’m so excited to be part of this incredible group of multidisciplinary, policy-oriented scholars who care deeply about improving the lives of young children. I look forward to learning from and with the talented researchers and practitioners that the Foundation will be bringing together.”

Margaret F. Quinn,  Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Child and Family Studies 
University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Research Interest Area: Supporting preschool teachers in the promotion of children’s early writing skills using an online professional development platform

“I am so honored to be included in the Foundation for Child Development’s new Promising Scholars program. I believe participation in the program will strengthen my research agenda and provide helpful opportunities for professional growth, networking, and mentorship. I look forward to taking part in the program and am greatly appreciative for this opportunity and honor.”

Katherine Zinsser,  Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Community and Prevention Research Program
Department of Psychology
University of Illinois at Chicago

Research Interest Area: Teacher preparation models to better support children’s social-emotional learning and continued validation of a classroom observational measure of emotion-centered teaching practices

“I’m thrilled to be a part of the Foundation’s Promising Scholars Program. At a time when it seems like the rest of our nation is finally realizing how critical our early care and education workforce is, it is exciting to be a part of a community that is already actively working to build capacity, increase diversity, and create effective systems to support these essential members of our society.”