Carolyn Hughes

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Carolyn Hughes is a professor in the Department of Special Education at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN and a research investigator in the John F. Kennedy Center at Vanderbilt. Prior to joining the faculty at Vanderbilt, Dr. Hughes taught at Arizona State University. At Vanderbilt, Dr. Hughes teaches classes in high poverty youth, secondary transition, and classroom management and advises students on the undergraduate, Masters, and doctoral level. Her research interests are in the areas of transition to adult life for high poverty youth, self-determination and mentoring strategies for at-risk students and students with disabilities, and social interaction among general education high school students and their peers with disabilities. Dr. Hughes developed the Vanderbilt Mentoring Model, in which Vanderbilt students mentor youth from high poverty high schools in Nashville, TN. The model currently is being implemented in her service-learning course, High Poverty Youth: Improving Outcomes. Dr. Hughes also has managed several secondary transition federally-funded projects, including the Metropolitan Nashville Peer Buddy Program, a service-learning program for general education students and their peers with disabilities, in addition to Promoting Inclusion through Self-Directed Learning, and Project OUTCOME, a program for high school students with disabilities from high poverty backgrounds. The Transition Handbook, co-authored by Dr. Hughes and published by Paul H. Brookes, provides over 300 strategies high school teachers can use to support students in the transition to adulthood. Success for All Students: Promoting Inclusion in Secondary Schools Through Peer Buddy Programs, also co-authored by Dr. Hughes and published by Allyn and Bacon, provides the research knowledge and practical strategies needed to start up and implement a peer buddy service-learning program in any school district. In addition, Dr. Hughes has published numerous studies designed to promote the self-directed learning skills of high school students. Finally, she also taught elementary and secondary public school for 10 years before joining higher education as a faculty member. Dr. Hughes returned to the classroom during the 2001-2002 academic year to teach inner city youth in New York City.