Flexibility and reputation drew Michael Kromka to Shippensburg University’s Educational Leadership, M.Ed. program.

“The most important thing that interested candidates should know about the educational leadership program is that it is built for your success,” Kromka said. “While very little worthwhile in life comes easy, the faculty that I have worked with in the program are willing to provide support and resources necessary for the development of educational leaders. They encourage you to momentarily abandon the comforts of your role as a teacher and consider situations through the lens of a school leader.”

A Clarion University graduate, Kromka has taught math in both the Williamsport Area and Mechanicsburg Area school districts. For him, taking the next step as a leader in education is about a change in mindset and embracing new experiences.

“The program includes two practicum experiences which require a considerable amount of leadership hours and assignments in the field. These experiences pushed me to work outside my comfort zone in the school setting and consider both every day and long term occurrences from a leadership lens,” Kromka said.

While the flexibility of online course offerings is a plus, Kromka has also appreciated that Ship allowed him to take required courses in person. He calls face-to-face interaction fertile ground for building positive relationships and growth. The educator says he starts each school year with the understanding that positive relationships are the foundation for success, which is an idea he notes his Ship professors have embraced as well.

“It is impossible to grow both personally and in professional practice without sacrificing time and effort. The university made these sacrifices manageable for me and allowed me to grow my professional capacity while keeping my personal and professional obligations top priorities.”

Read more stories from the Class of 2020.