Meet Dr. Melanie Fowler

May 18, 2020

by FSC Staff

There’s nothing like entering a program of study and coming out of it with immediate success. At least that’s the case for Dr. Melanie Fowler, who came to Florida Southern as a student of FSC’s Doctor of Education program during the 2017 summer semester. She saw immediate results upon graduation when she received a promotion from adjunct instructor to full-time, tenure-track professor at FSC.

She entered the program having earned her master’s in industrial / organizational psychology from the University of Colorado in Denver and her bachelor’s of arts degree in psychology from Indiana State University. Prior to beginning her doctoral journey, Dr. Fowler worked as a research associate for the United States Air Force Academy and taught for nearly a decade in higher education.

Her teaching experience included adjunct positions at the Pennsylvania State University, Hillsborough Community College, and Florida Southern College. After serving as an adjunct for Florida Southern College’s psychology department for one-and-a-half years, Dr. Fowler accepted a Visiting Instructor position in the same department. Dr. Fowler held this full-time position while completing her doctoral work.

During her time as a doctoral student, Dr. Fowler presented research at the Florida Educational Research Association, National Institute of the Teaching of Psychology, and Southeastern Psychological Association conferences. Furthermore, she published research in the Florida Journal of Educational Research and had several teaching tools based on this research adopted by the American Psychological Association.

Dr. Fowler’s primary research for her dissertation centered on the experiences of first-year college students. Specifically, the title of her dissertation is Social Media and Social Adjustment: A Mixed-Methods Study of College Learning Community Students. Over the span of a semester, she collected quantitative and qualitative data from multiple learning community student cohorts’ use of social media and these students’ adjustment to college. She combined this data in a mixed method research design to increase the understanding of how students’ use of social media may lead to academic success or provide insight into the needs of students.

"My experience with the Ed.D program at FSC has been the greatest challenge and opportunity for personal and professional growth," said Dr. Fowler.

She enrolled in the doctoral program with the intent on improving her teaching and research skills. And, her journey led to a tenure-track Assistant Professor of Education position at Florida Southern College. She credits her supportive faculty and colleagues, collaborative classmates, and her three helpful children with her successful completion of the program.