Pamela Felder -- Author and Educator

Abbreviated Biography

Present position: Associate Professor, University of Maryland Eastern Shore

Dr. Felder’s research focuses on the racial and cultural experiences associated with doctoral degree attainment. She is committed to enhancing models of doctoral student socialization. She believes that an understanding of the doctorate has tremendous implications for learning and/or addressing many areas of higher education that have been viewed historically as problematic. The foremost concern in her research is the discussion of inequity in access in postsecondary education. Thus, her work not only examines the statistical trends of doctoral degree attainment, it also explores predoctoral and postdoctoral degree experiences to shed light on the socialization aspects of students who enter doctoral study and the disciplinary identities of doctoral degree holders as they begin to engage in their professions.

Currently, Felder is an Associate Professor in the Department of Education at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore (UMES), a historically Black institution in the University of Maryland System, where she also works on special projects for the Dean of the School of Arts and Professions.  From 2014-2016 she served as an Associate Professor in Organizational Leadership (ORLD) Ph.D. program where she chaired and served on dissertation committees, as well as, program, departmental, school, and university committees.  Additionally, she worked to enhance and develop programmatic initiatives; this includes launching the very first ORLD faculty/student writing collaborative designed to support the writing productivity of doctoral students.  She is also Founder of Black Doctorates Matter, a research-based and evidence-based social media community-building initiative developed to provide psycho-social support for historically marginalized students interested in pursuing doctoral studies. 

Felder joined the faculty of the Higher Education Program in the Graduate School of Education at the University of Pennsylvania in 2010 as Lecturer and Program Manager. In this role she advised graduate students, taught courses, published articles with colleagues, and served on the school’s Faculty Diversity committee.  Additionally, her professional background includes a three-year teaching appointment (2006-2009) in the Higher and Postsecondary Education Program at Teachers College, Columbia University in New York. Additionally, she served as Lecturer in the Community College Leadership Doctoral Program at Morgan State University in Maryland (2010) where she has developed and taught courses in mixed methods research and community college leadership.  She’s also designed and taught courses focused on: diversity in higher education, college student retention, professional development in higher education, college student development, leadership theories, and qualitative methods.

Felder’s research explores the relationship between the belief systems and behaviors of doctoral students and their impact on academic socialization, success, and degree completion. Her work is comprised of an examination of the historical societal factors that have shaped barriers to degree completion and students’ approach to negotiating these barriers. Prior socialization experiences serve to shed light on the socialization aspects of students who enter doctoral study and the disciplinary identities of doctoral degree holders as they begin to engage in their professions.

Felder received her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Maryland Eastern Shore, a Master’s Degree in Educational Policy and Leadership from Temple University, and a Ph.D. in Education from the University of Pennsylvania.  She is a proud mother of her daughter, Justina Patrice; both are Philadelphia natives residing in The City of Brotherly Love.

Higher Education

Research Interests
Doctoral Education, Doctoral Student Socialization, Racial and Cultural Awareness, Diversity in Higher Education, and Prior Socialization