Nelly Hecker, a faculty member at Furman University since the fall of 1979, has served as Chair of the Department of Education and Director of Teacher Education since 1999. With a Bachelor of Science (1963) and Masters (1964) degrees from Springfield College and Ed. S. (1974) and Ph.D. (1978) degrees from The University of Georgia, her area of specialty is Literacy Education. In 1962, as part of an exchange between the United States and Uruguay, she received a two-year Fulbright Scholarship to study in Massachusetts. Throughout her teaching career, Dr. Hecker has been interested in student and teacher development and in supporting the consistent use of effective teaching practices. Her presentations at state and national conferences highlight curriculum innovations, the use of children's literature in the classroom, and content area reading strategies. Dr. Hecker has had a broad range of teaching experiences in bilingual schools, elementary grades, and higher education. She has participated in curriculum development institutes on the use of case study methodology to facilitate reflection and decision-making and has authored or co-authored children's literature articles. As Co-Director of the Library of Congress Adventure of the American Mind Grant at Furman (2000-2007), she worked with in-service teachers (K-12) interested in developing effective skills to use online resources from the Library of Congress in their classrooms. Recipient of the 2013 Alester G. Furman, Hr. and Janie Earle Furman Award for Meritorious Advising, she remains committed to offer encouragement and support to teacher candidates as they embrace their preparation as educators.