February 8, 2022

My Story, My Voice: Dr. Carmen Wilson, Academic Success Coach

Black History Month

Dr. Carmen Wilson, Academic Success Coach

Dr. Carmen Wilson joined Schoolcraft College in 2016, specializing in the disciplines of reading, study skills, and developmental education. She provides individual coaching for students and facilitates group sessions for class visits, TEAS Test Prep, and the Detroit Promise Cohort. Dr. Wilson is the Coordinator for the STARS DEI Leadership Program. Her mantra is, “I am your champion, cheerleader, and accountability partner, helping students soar academically.”

To help celebrate Black History Month, we’re pleased to share “My Story, My Voice,” a series of essays written by Schoolcraft College students, faculty, staff and alumni. Please go to schoolcraft.edu/BHM to read the complete collection.

Dr. Carmen Wilson

By Dr. Carmen Wilson, Academic Success Coach

My passion for teaching began at age 6, when, after returning from a day at school I would retreat to my bedroom and line up my dolls across the bed to play teacher, mimicking the instructional style seen earlier in the day. This anecdote, constantly told by my mother, who delighted in relating these events, was her way of showing the pride she felt in my academic accomplishments.

I was raised in a strong, faith-based, Christian family. Our family’s weekly attendance at the Historic Second Baptist Church of Detroit was not negotiable! My father worked two jobs, and my mother stayed at home with my younger brother and I. Their combined support was there for all activities and classes in which we were involved. Fostering my love for reading was done by a weekly walk to the Detroit Public Library Mobile Unit.

A graduate of Michigan State University, my first job was as a Social Studies teacher. I have subsequently filled the professional roles in K12 including teacher, coordinator, academic dean, assistant principal, and principal. My Doctorate in Leadership and Policy Studies provided the segue into higher education. First in my family to attend college, I was blessed to have my parents, son, and closest friends witness me cross the stage at Wayne State University.

My passion has always been to help students achieve academic excellence. My path led me to the field of developmental reading, writing, composition, and academic support. On February 22, 2016, I became a Faculty Facilitator (now Academic Success Coach) at Schoolcraft College. Initially the only African-American female in the Learning Support Services department, I readily identified with the obstacles that beset underrepresented, first-generation populations and worked to create a mentorship program, specifically aimed at helping first-year college students. With the support of Associate Dean Melissa Schultz, the Scholars Taking Off & Rising To Success (STARS) Program was launched during the fall of 2019.

The success of the pilot STARS Program is shown by the anonymous donor, renewing it for the 2021-2022 academic school year. The STARS Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Leadership Program is based on four pillars: Academic, Leadership, Service-Learning, and Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Social Justice. This initiative is designed to provide a wealth of knowledge, a plethora of diverse experiences, promote a catalyst for change at Schoolcraft and the community at-large for two scholars, two mentors, and ten mentees. Indeed, it has been my pleasure and honor to serve as the Coordinator of STARS DEI Leadership Program, a very viable value-added entity at Schoolcraft College. I am excited by the prospect of expanding the program as well as seeing the creative and innovative campus-wide events our STARS scholars will implement.

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