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Dr. Davis-Morris receives honorable mention in AABHE Dissertation of the Year Award Competition

La Raissa Davis-Morris Graduation PictureDr. La Raissa Davis-Morris (02), an admissions counselor at Chattahoochee Technical College in Marietta, Georgia, received an Honorable Mention in the 2020 American Association of Blacks in Higher Education (AABHE) Dissertation of the Year Award Competition. Davis-Morris was awarded complimentary registration to the 2020 AABHE Annual Conference in October, a one-year membership with the association and an invitation to the Dissertation Award Winner Research and Writing Boot Camp to maintain her research agenda.  

Davis-Morris received her degrees through Morehead State University’s College of Education. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education and Special Education in 2002a Master of Arts in Adult and Higher Education in 2005a Master of Arts in Special Education in 2007, Rank 1 in Special Education in 2008 and an Ed.D. in Educational Leadership in Adult and Higher Education in 2018 

Davis-Morris served as an admissions counselor at MSU from 2003 to 2006 and as the multicultural student services coordinator from 2006 to 2008. She later left MSU to serve as the special education teacher and curriculum coach for Fayette County Public Schools in Lexington from 2008 to 2012 before taking her current position at Chattahoochee Technical College.  

The title of the capstone project she submitted for consideration this year was “Strategies for Thriving: A Qualitative Study of Black Teachers Who Participated in Morehead State University’s Teacher Preparation Program.” Davis-Morris also presented at the 2017 AABHE Annual Conference.  

“To have my work acknowledged three years later is a testament to my preparation as an undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral student at Morehead State University,” she said. “As a former teacher education major, I felt compelled to make a small contribution to the extant literature exploring the experiences of African American teacher education majors. One missing aspect that I explored was the lived experiences of rural African American teacher education majors. I hope that my project not only inspires current minority teacher education majors but also compels current and future researchers to explore minority teacher shortages.”  

For information about programs at MSU’s College of Education, visit, email Dr. Chris Miller, Dean of the College of Education, at or call 606-783-2162. 

Photo, from left: Dr. Daryl R. Privott, associate professor of adult and higher education and director of the Faculty Center for Teaching & Learning; Dr. La Raissa Davis-Morris (02), graduating with an Ed.D. in Educational Leadership and Adult and Higher Education at MSU’s Commencement Ceremony in 2018; and Dr. Mike Hensonassociate provost for research and dean of the Graduate School.