Women Scholars
Navigating the Doctoral Journey

Editors: Jelane A. Kennedy, EdD
Beverly A. Burnell, PhD

Women Scholars

In production
Pub Date: July 2018
Hardback Price: $139.95 US
Hard ISBN: 9781771886789
E-Book ISBN: 9781351202633
Pages: Approx 275pp + index
Binding Type: hardback

Over and over, studies have concluded that the doctoral experience is a monumental challenge in higher education, particularly for women. This book, Women Scholars: Navigating the Doctoral Journey, provides an enlightening ethnographic look at women and their doctoral developmental experiences. The book’s aim is to empower women to be able to contextualize their experience while also offering support and inspiring readers to consider alternative ways to successfully approach the doctoral process. Women anticipating and entering the life of academia will benefit from the voices and experiences shared by the women scholars in this book.

The essay writers in this volume offer an examination of critical incidents in their doctoral experiences and offer strategies they have found helpful in managing those incidents. The book also addresses challenges presented by the transition from doctoral study to post-doc employment. The volume presents 46 essays from 40 women representing a range of ages, ethnicities, academic disciplines, sexual orientations, family circumstances, and family educational histories. Their stories are told in five stages:
Stage 1: Preadmission to Enrollment
Stage 2: First Year of Program
Stage 3: Second Year Through Candidacy
Stage 4: The Dissertation Stage
Stage 5: Completion and Transition to Employment

These are stories of empowerment, of pitfalls and barriers overcome, of successful negotiations of the graduate school process, of the joys and challenges of scholarly pursuits, of positive help-seeking behaviors and strategies, and of life after the dissertation is completed.

Potential applicants for doctoral studies will walk away with a sense that graduate education is possible and that one can be successful. Higher educators in doctoral programs, as well, will acquire a deeper understanding and appreciation for the idiosyncratic challenges facing their female students and, one hopes, develop policies and/or strategies and behaviors that empower and encourage these students’ completion of their doctoral studies.

Key features:

  • Shares stories of empowerment from other women who have been successful in doctoral programs
  • Provides tips to help to successfully negotiate the graduate school process at the doctoral level
  • Discusses the pitfalls and barriers that women run into while completing doctoral education
  • Includes positive help seeking behaviors and strategies
  • Addresses considerations in preparing for graduate school
  • Explores how to negotiate life after degree completion


1. From the Concrete Walls of Spanish Harlem to the Mosaic Tiles of Academia
Sherlene Ayala

2. Do I Really Want or Need a Doctorate, and How Do I Choose the Right Program for Me?
Delmy M. Lendof

3. You Can’t Do That!
Cherie L. King

4. “Good Moms Don’t Go To Doctoral Programs”
Jody J. Fiorini

5. First Steps
Margaret Leone

6. Making the PhD Happen, Stage 1: Preadmission to Enrollment
Anne Toolan Rowley

7. The Overnight Psychologist
Hillary Hurst Bush

8. Not All Who Wander Are Lost
Beverly A. Burnell

9. The Ticket to the Dance
Emily Phillips

10. The Importance of a Successful Peer Support Group
Anna W. Nolan

11. The Language of the Academy: An English Language Learner in a Doctoral Program
Cinzia Pica-Smith

12. The Doctoral Experience: One Single Woman’s Response to the (Mis)perceptions of Academic Peers and Family
Maureen E. Squires

13. My First Year: Is Work-Life Balance Achievable?
Cherie L. King

14. Ahead of the Curve
Deborah J. Smith

15. “You Can’t Make a Silk Purse Out of a Sow’s Ear,” My Mother Said
Signe M. Kastberg

16. Widening The Circle
Kim R. Harris and Lucille W. Ijoy

17. “My Keepers”: The Power of Mentorship During the First Year Doctoral Experience
Markesha Miller

18. Making the PhD Happen, Stage II: First Year of Program
Anne Toolan Rowley

19. This Was Not the Original Plan
Jamie S. Switzer

20. Who Would Have Thought?
Jelane A. Kennedy

21. Against All Odds: Persevering While Pursuing the PhD
Nadja C. Johnson

22. Mentoring: A Real Relationship
Allison M. Hrovat, Melissa Luke

23. “Lift as We Climb”: Community in Doctoral Education
Liza A. Talusan

24. And This Too Shall Pass
Nancy L. Elwess

25. From ABD to EdD/PhD
Yettieve A. Marquez-Santana

26. Making the PhD Happen: Part 3
Anne Toolan Rowley

27. The Big Push
Cherie L. King

28. Advancing Through Candidacy: Selecting a Dissertation Topic, Chair, and Committee
Maureen E. Squires

29. When Motherhood and PhD Collide: The Power of Positive Messages
Kate Bresonis McKee

30. Promise & Potential: How I Lost and Found My Scholarly Counseling Self
Karen L. Mackie

31. A Greater Purpose
Wanda I. Montañez

32. Monsters
Silvia Mejía

33. The Importance of Social Capital and Internal Determination
Terri Ward

34. Mrs., Mommy, Doctor: The Dissertation Phase
Cherie L. King

35. Making the PhD Happen: Part 4
Anne Toolan Rowley

36. Talking Me Off the Ledge
Wendy Neifeld Wheeler

37. A Place For Me
Aja E. LaDuke

38. My Albatross: Completing the Dissertation at Last
Jennifer A. Brown

39. A Story of Thriving and Arriving: My Online PhD Journey
Patrice Jenkins

40. The Doctoral Study: The Intertwined Professional Transition and Personal Transformation
Ying Tang

41. Dear Miles: Letters From a Grateful PhD Student
Kit Anderson

42. Why Perseverance Was Crucial
Eileen Cecilione

43. “Finish Wisely”
Seema Rivera

44. And For You
Tammy Lynn Garren

45. Finding My Scholarly Voice
Michelle C. Sterk Barrett

46. Finding Your Cape: Discovering the Educator Inside
Susannah C. Coaston


About the Authors / Editors:
Editors: Jelane A. Kennedy, EdD
Associate Professor, Student Development and Higher Education Program, Counselor Education and Family Therapy, Central Connecticut State University, New Britain, Connecticut

Jelane A. Kennedy, EdD, is an Associate Professor in the Student Development and Higher Education Program, Counselor Education and Family Therapy at Central Connecticut State University, New Britain, CT. She was previously Professor in the Counseling and College Student Services Department at The College of Saint Rose, Albany, New York. She teaches graduate students in the both Counseling and College Student Services. At The College of Saint Rose, she had been the Program Coordinator of College Student Services for 20+ years. Some of her areas of professional focus have been career development, cultural competency, and ethical practices. She has worked with numerous students completing their theses and has coached doctoral students from other colleges as they have worked to complete their programs. She has also mentored master’s level students entering doctoral programs. Dr. Kennedy began her career working in student affairs primarily in the area of career services.

Beverly A. Burnell, PhD
Associate Professor in Counselor Education, State University of New York at Plattsburgh, Plattsburgh, New York

Beverly A. Burnell, PhD, is an Associate Professor in Counselor Education at the State University of New York at Plattsburgh, and also serves as the Employee Assistance Coordinator for the campus. She teaches graduate students in the department’s nationally accredited Clinical Mental Health Counseling program and in the program in Student Affairs and Higher Education. Some of her areas of professional focus have been career development, counselor professional roles and identity, ethical practice, cultural competence, and transition processes for students with disabilities. Dr. Burnell has been an active contributor to the design of nationally accredited graduate programs in teacher education and counselor education and has coordinated the accreditation process for the Counselor Education Department. Dr. Burnell began her education career as a secondary mathematics teacher and has been a college career counselor, academic advisor, and personal counselor. Dr. Burnell has co-edited several books, including Best Practices for Education Professionals, The Ethics of Cultural Competence in Higher Education, and Best Practices for Education Professionals: Volume 2.

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