Reflecting on February is both fantastic and terrifying. On February 23, I received my acceptance into the doctoral program at Northern Arizona University. After a year of attempting to fit into a program that wasn’t for me, reflecting, and asking for help, I know this program is right for me. Not only is Educational Leadership my jam, but Northern Arizona University is my home. It’s where I got my bachelor’s and master’s degrees. The university fits my values, and I cannot contain my excitement to further my education as a Lumberjack.
I will be a Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership- Community College/Higher Education. My goal with this degree is to help bridge the K12 and Post Secondary worlds to better equip practicing teachers. Once teachers are in the classroom, they often have limited opportunities with universities beyond getting a graduate degree. However, in my last two positions, I have been able to bring the experience of a content expert from a university to the pedagogy experts, the educators. It’s absolutely amazing what can happen for students when those two things come together. One only needs to look at Twitter to see scholars and educators collaborating and cheering each other on.
My program starts in mid-May with residency weekends in Flagstaff. Summer brings 9 credit hours with my cohort. The thing I love about this program is in-person classes (which I thrive in) and online classes.
Now, in case you are wondering, here is where our family is at this moment:
- My amazing husband, Chris, is in his second semester of an online doctoral program in Leadership and Innovation at Arizona State.
- Our child is starting junior high next year and is becoming a stellar bassist. I love that she loves music and is dedicated to practicing so much that she made the honors orchestra for the district.
- Our puppy, Sir Oliver Cromwell Evans, is still a puppy (even at over 60 pounds) and is still learning to be a dog. He is currently in intermediate training classes.
While we are bursting with pride at our family, Chris and I realize that what is coming down the pipe will make life a little more… less simple. We have had many conversations and always come back to one thing.
Focusing on our WHY.
If we finish our dissertations in the scheduled time, we will both finish our degrees while our child is a freshman in high school. We are setting ourselves up for life when she goes off to college and hopefully can help her finance her education. We also want to have careers that allow us to continue to make a difference in education as a whole.
We will hit many roadblocks, but we’ve dedicated ourselves to removing them for each other and our family.
Welcome to the journey!