Strange-Martin tapped as new dean of College of Education


Olaniran Obaloluwa

Dean of College of Ed, Nicole Yvette Strange-Martin

Christine Shelton, Editor-in-Chief

The College of Education, one of Alabama State University’s six respective colleges, welcomes its new dean, Nicole Yvette Strange-Martin, Ed.D. Strange-Martin is new to the Hornet Nation, as she only started working at the university two months ago when the spring semester began.

“It has been a welcoming experience, and it feels like home because I grew up walking on college campuses since I was three years old when my father, the late Dr. Anthony Strange, was serving as Interim Dean and Professor of Educator,” Strange-Martin said, explaining that while she is new to this university’s campus, she is no stranger to college campuses.

The Columbus, Ohio native began her undergraduate studies at the private, historically black college of Spelman College in Atlanta, Ga., where she obtained her Bachelor of Arts in English. From there, she went on to earn her Masters of Science in Middle Grades Education, and eventually, she received her Ed.D. at Temple University in Pennsylvania, Penn.

“I have known I wanted to be an educator since I was three years old. I am a third-generation educator, and I am a second-generation educator of higher education. My sister, Dr. Theo Strange, is also an educator, along with my mom and late father. My parents instilled the value of learning. Even now, I learn something new every single day. I am a dedicated lifelong learner.”

Being an educator is in Strange-Martin’s bloodline. She has worked in higher education and specifically the College of Education for over two decades, starting in 1996. Some of the cities she has taught in include Miami, Fla; Chicago, Ill., Washington, DC; Philadelphia, Penn., and Orangeburg, S.C. Before becoming a Hornet, she also served as the dean in the School of Education at Claflin University.

“I have served in the following capacity as writing center coach, tutor, an independent literacy consultant with The Pleasant Group Reading Specialists, Inc. for the Chicago Public Schools,” Strange-Martin said, explaining a few of her roles during her tenure at schools in Chicago.

At the School of Education in Claflin University, she served in several positions, including assistant professor of reading, associate professor of literacy studies, coordinator of the graduate reading program, director of the reading and tutoring clinic, department chair of reading and literacy studies, and director of international courses.

The College of Education is said to be one of the most hands-on colleges at the university, seeing as students have off-site internships as part of their curriculum. However, COVID-19 has changed a considerable amount of the standard assignments and practices. 

“COVID has impacted us in a way that will change the way we teach, learn, and communicate for years to come. For me, it was a welcomed way of working due to my deep commitment to technology and communicating globally with students and colleagues. I know for some, remote learning was a little terrifying, but we always have to remain focused on the goals of academic achievement  and professionalism.”

While starting out as the dean of a more hands-on college under COVID restrictions has been an adjustment, Strange-Martin sees it as an opportunity for an outbreak of creativity.

“This new welcomed change allowed for my creative side to emerge and stay committed to collaboration. For me, COVID has evoked the birth of more online programs and fast-track (8-week mini-semesters). I think it’s really time to examine our traditional 16 weeks for “some” courses and the length of time that students are online taking a full load each semester. It’s to explore our creativity! The high is the limit! We have to remember, we are a tribe, and all tribes stick together!”