Only two classes into his graduate degree, Matt Stephenson already had gained more focus and purpose in his daily work as a high school math teacher.
Matt worked toward a Master of Education degree at Huntington University while teaching Algebra I and geometry at Huntington North High School.
He said that financial difficulties and numerous educational programs can create distractions in the classroom. His most significant challenge is keeping his focus on what truly matters – helping students learn and reach their goals.
“My work in the master’s program has given me more insight into the everyday instruction I do in my classroom,” he said. “As an undergraduate student, it is difficult to see how much of what you study actually pertains to what you will be doing. Working on this degree has given my teaching more focus and purpose.”
Classes in the graduate school are offered in a hybrid format, in which part of the courses are done online, and part are done on campus in a traditional classroom setting.
Matt chose to further his education through Huntington University because of the convenience of the hybrid classes.
“It allows very busy working professionals to work at home half the time and skip the drive and class-time commitments during the online weeks,” said Director of the Master of Education Program Steve Holtrop.
The smaller class sizes and professor-student interactions are other aspects of the HU graduate program that Matt appreciates.
“Professors are not too busy to meet or talk with you when you need them,” he said.
Matt believes that his degree work is worthwhile and productive, and he encourages others to pursue the Master of Education program at HU to better themselves in their career.
Teachers in the program complete assignments and projects in their particular areas of concentration so that they can directly implement the work they do into their classrooms, said Brenda Knipp, graduate studies admissions and marketing coordinator.
“My experiences have solidified the fact that you don’t need to compromise your beliefs or faith for your career in public education,” Matt said. “People will always see your faith and be encouraged by it through the way you lead your life.”