State Leadership Team

L. Allen Phelps, Ph.D.
METTE Principal Investigator
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L. Allen Phelps is a senior scientist at the Wisconsin Center for Education Research, professor emeritus of the School of Education and director emeritus of the Center on Education and Work at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Over the past four decades, Dr. Phelps' research and teaching has focused on improving policy and leadership in career and technical education, secondary special education, and other education initiatives seeking to integrate high schools, colleges, and the economy. Anchored in inter- and intra-disciplinary perspectives, Dr. Phelps' scholarship has informed questions about the economic and social returns associated with various education policies and programs and led to changes in state and federal legislation for career and technical education. As director of the Center on Education and Work and professor of Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis at UW-Madison from 1990 to 2011, his research has highlighted the efficacy of such innovations as work-based learning, individualization or personalization of instruction, school-to-work transition for students with disabilities, regional community and technical college initiatives, and career and college readiness. In his half-time faculty appointment at UW-Madison, Dr. Phelps led graduate courses and seminars centered on governance and leadership of education for work, two-year college leadership, and high school re-design and innovation. In addition, he has taught research methods and the foundations of higher and postsecondary education. Over the past decade, six of his 25 Ph.D. students have served as presidents at one of the Wisconsin Technical Colleges. Recent publications include:

Phelps, L.A., (2012, Spring) (Ed.) Advancing the regional role of two-year colleges. New Directions in Community Colleges, Jossey-Bass Publishers.

Nathan, M.J, Atwood, A.K., Prevost, A, Phelps, L.A. & Tran, N. (2011). How professional development in Project Lead the Way changes high school STEM teachers' beliefs about engineering education, Journal of Pre-college Engineering Education Research, 1(1), 15-28.

Nathan, M. J., Tran, N. A., Atwood, A. K., Prevost, A., & Phelps, L. A. (2010). Beliefs and expectations about engineering preparation exhibited by high school STEM teachers. Journal ofEngineering Education, 99(4), 409-426.

Xueli Wang, Ph.D.
METTE Co-Principal Investigator
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Dr. Xueli Wang is an assistant professor in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a scholar at the Wisconsin Center for the Advancement of Postsecondary Education (WISCAPE). She holds a Ph.D. in Higher Education and a graduate minor in quantitative research methods from The Ohio State University. Wang's research centers on the secondary-postsecondary nexus and the intersection between motivational beliefs, social disadvantage, and college experience and success, with a particular focus on students beginning at community colleges. Wang's current research deals with several issues pertaining to community colleges and their students, including baccalaureate aspirations, participation in STEM fields of study, educational pathway, as well as the role of community colleges in STEM education. Her work has been published or is forthcoming in Journal of Higher Education, Research in Higher Education, Journal of College Student Development, Community College Journal of Research and Practice, Journal of General Education, and Journal of The First-Year Experience and Students in Transition.

Wang received a 2007-2008 Dissertation Fellowship from AIR/NCES/NSF/NPEC and a 2011-2012 AIR/NSF research grant. In summer 2011, Wang was selected as a Young Academic Fellow by the Institute of Higher Education Policy and the Lumina Foundation.

Janet L. Washbon, Ph.D.
Senior Scientist, Wisconsin Center for Education Research
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A regional economist and public policy analyst by training, for more than 20 years Dr. Washbon was responsible for policy development and evaluation at the Wisconsin Technical College System (WTCS) Board, first as the lead analyst and then as Associate Vice President for Policy and Government Relations. In her work with the WTCS, she staffed and authored the findings of numerous studies, taskforces, and blue-ribbon commissions on the state’s labor force training needs, the school to careers transition, state and regional economic development issues, and improving collegiate transfer for technical college students. While at the WTCS, she also co-led a successful effort to establish a public/private partnership partially funded through the National Institute of Standards and Technology to provide manufacturing extension services for small to medium-sized firms in Wisconsin. Most recently, she is the author of “Learning and the New Workplace: Impacts of Technology Change on Postsecondary Career and Technical Education” in New Directions for Community Colleges (Spring, 2012).

Washbon, J. L. (2012). Learning and the new workplace: Impacts of technology change on postsecondary career and technical education. In Advancing the regional role of two-year colleges (L. A. Phelps, Ed., New Directions for Community Colleges, No. 157, pp. 43-52). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Hsun-yu Chan, Ed.M., M.S.
Project Assistant
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Hsun-yu is now a doctoral student in Human Development Area of the Department of Educational Psychology in UW-Madison. Formerly trained as a middle school guidance counselor, Hsun-yu became interested in human development in adolescence through early adulthood and quantitative methodology in educational research. He has independently conducted a large-scale study on college students’ psychosocial development in Taiwan, which inspired his interest in higher education from the perspective of human development. His research findings have been presented in national and international conferences. In METTE project Hsun-yu is responsible for managing and analyzing quantitative and qualitative data, conducting literature search, providing organizational support, and maintaining Workspace.

Amy Prevost, Ph.D.
Project Manager

National Advisory Board

Barbara Anderegg, Ph.D.
Instructor and Principal Investigator, Consortium for Renewal Energy Technology
Madison Area Technical College, Madison, WI

James Mackey, M.S.
Education Director, Manufacturing Engineering
Wisconsin Technical College System
Madison, WI

Steven Wendel, Ph.D.
Director, National Center for Manufacturing Education
Director, Division of Science, Mathematics, and Engineering
Affiliate Director, Project Lead the Way
Sinclair Community College, Dayton, OH

Michelle Van Noy, Ph.D.
Research Project Manager, Heldrich Center for Workforce Development
Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ