Please describe your current title/position.
I am a teacher at Bonney Lake High School in the Academy of Hope, a program for students with academic and behavior difficulties. Beyond the school day, I continue to work closely with those who provide and advocate for quality professional learning. For the past year and a half, I have served on the Board of Directors for Teachers United, advocating for teacher voice in student-focused policy-making.
How did your MIL degree prepare you for leadership work?
Because the MIL program allowed me to hone my disciplinary learning in literacy while also building a foundational knowledge in leadership and policy, I feel equipped to be a master of my craft while also advocating for improvements within my field. During my studies within UW’s College of Education, I found my teacher stance, my voice. Since then, I have found a platform on which to elevate my voice and those of others who similarly desire to have an impact on the students in front of them and the policies that surround them.
What were some highlights of your experiences in the MIL program?
Everything about the design of the MIL program worked for me, from sharing the experience with a cohort of colleagues to scheduling courses designed to make me a well-rounded practitioner. Six years later, I continue to communicate and to collaborate with professors and classmates. The MIL program prepares teachers for a career lattice rather than a career ladder, recognizing there are many routes in teacher leadership.
What was your Capstone Project about? In what ways was it useful to you as an instructional leader?
My capstone project was on interdisciplinary teaming and literacy. I have used the learning from that action research study regularly to inform my work with secondary teams. A couple of years after it was presented to my program, it was revised—in collaboration with my advisor and friend, Dixie Massey—and published in Washington State Kappan journal.