Shippensburg University’s joint Educational Leadership, Ed.D. program with Millersville University was brand new when Joe Intrieri applied.

“Other colleagues in the educational field personally knew the professor starting the program and spoke highly of them,” Intrieri said.

Now a graduate of the program, Intrieri had to defend his dissertation virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic. That wasn’t the first time he experienced changes while in the program.

“The program afforded me the flexibility to complete my studies, dedicate time to my work responsibilities and still have time for personal endeavors. During my tenure in this program, I changed jobs, bought my first house, got married and had my first child,” Intrieri said.

Intrieri notes the connections Ship faculty in the program have with practicing administrators and says they are a key component to professional networking. He also found the blended learning model effective in preparing him to complete the program and defend his dissertation.

“As soon as I defended my dissertation, I was promoted within my district to head principal of Spring Grove Area Intermediate School,” Intrieri said. “I feel that completing this program strengthened my candidacy for furthering my career.”

Intrieri’s road to becoming a head principal included time as an assistant high school principal in both the Spring Grove Area and Littlestown Area school districts. Prior to those experiences, he was a teacher in the Blairsville-Saltsburg School District and at the Forbes Road Career and Technology Center.

Before obtaining his doctorate from Shippensburg University, Intrieri received his master’s degree from California University of Pennsylvania and his bachelor’s degree from Clarion University. He is a graduate of Kiski Area High School.

Read more stories from the Class of 2020.