Prophete to lead Cross-Cultural Equity Institute
Dr. Karline Prophete, who has 15 years of teaching and administrative experience in higher education and K-12, has been named interim director of Palm Beach State College’s new Cross-Cultural Equity Institute.
Prophete was picked from a pool of internal PBSC applicants to launch and establish the groundwork for the institute designed to improve retention and close the graduation gap for minority students at the College. She begins her new role April 16.
“I’m definitely honored to be a part of this work at the College. Making sure that our students, particularly students who are marginalized and underrepresented, have access to higher education has always been an essential part of the work that I’ve done,’’ Prophete said. “I see this as legacy work. Palm Beach State has an opportunity to help shape the narrative around equity, specifically with students of color in higher education.”
A native of Haiti, Prophete began her career with the Broward County School District in 2005, where she served for seven years as a dual enrollment/post-secondary advisor and math teacher. She first joined PBSC in 2012 as a testing center manager at the Lake Worth campus and has worked as a professor, summer department chair, and assistant dean of students at the Boca Raton campus. She currently serves as PBSC’s director of the Department of Early Childhood and K-12 Programs, which support current and prospective teachers. She is an adjunct faculty member in the College of Educational Leadership and Methodology at Florida Atlantic University.
Prophete holds doctorate, master’s and specialist degrees in educational leadership from FAU and a bachelor’s degree in public administration from Florida International University. Her passion for equity, retention and student success led to the research for her dissertation titled “How Race, Gender and Pell Status Affect the Persistence and Degree Attainment Rates of Dual Enrollment Students.”
“Dr. Prophete brings an enormous amount of experience as a statistician, a leader, a strategic thinker and equity conscious individual,’’ said Dr. Peter Barbatis, vice president of student services and enrollment management and interim Lake Worth campus provost. “Her experience spans the educational system from K-12 to the university working as a teacher, professor, administrator and practitioner. She is passionate about student success and has the talent to advance the work of the Cross-Cultural Equity Institute.”
The College moved forward with plans for the institute after receiving a generous gift from Dr. Barbara Carey-Shuler, a local philanthropist and former longtime educator and elected official, whose name it will bear. Overall, the graduation rate for PBSC first-time-in-college students is 41.8 percent, which is higher than the 40% rate for their counterparts in the Florida College System. However, the graduation rate is 38.6% for black students at PBSC and 41% for Hispanic students, while it is 43.9% for white students. Greater inequities exist among segments of these populations, and the College wants to change that.
Prophete said the institute will bring together research, resources and programs to help identify the populations that need support, determine what support is most effective and provide a hub for faculty and staff to learn about culturally-relevant pedagogy and how to design high-impact practices to support students and ensure equity.
“I do believe we can eradicate the success gaps. We have to be more intentional in the work that we do,” she said. “I’m excited and grateful to have a chance to lay the foundation of making excellence inclusive at PBSC through the work of the Dr. Barbara Carey-Shuler Cross-Cultural Equity Institute.”