Dr. Khalid Mumin ’95, Pennsylvania’s Secretary of Education, revisited his alma mater to tour the facilities he once attended and interact with students, faculty and staff. 

He dedicated much of his time to interacting with students and teachers at the Grace B. Luhrs University Elementary School (GBLUES), the only on-campus public elementary lab school in the state, situated within the university’s College of Education and Human Services. GBLUES offers experiential learning, providing students across various majors a unique opportunity to immerse themselves in school activities. 

During his visit to GBLUES, Dr. Khalid interacted with students and educators, actively engaging in meaningful conversations about teaching, and goals for the future of education and shared joyous laughter. 

Dr. Khalid Mumin, Pennsylvania's Secretary of Higher Education returns to Shippensburg University

Moving over to the Career Center, Mumin met with Lorelee Isbell, the executive vice president of Career and Workforce Development. Isbell emphasized the wide range of resources that Ship offers to students, addressing Shippensburg’s partnership with the Department of Labor Industry. A collaboration between the GIANT Company and workforce development organizations, Ship aims to address the emergence of jobs needed within the region. Through this initiative, Ship is working towards equipping individuals with the skills necessary to thrive in everchanging industries such as agribusiness, not only for degree programs but also for those seeking certifications and noncredit courses.

Isbell explained how Ship provides an abundance of opportunities that lead students into regional positions after graduation, which then have the potential to lead to national positions, “creating a pathway across different industries”.

Dr. Khalid, Pennsylvania's Secretary of Higher Education returns to Shippensburg University

Mumin referenced Governor Josh Shapiro’s Blueprint for Higher Education, and how he believes that Ship is doing a great job at contributing to its initiative of concentrating on creating a higher education system that is “focused on competitiveness and workforce development”.

Transitioning into the Milton and Doreen Morgan School of Engineering, Mumin experienced first-hand the innovative projects that are in progress, including the BAJA SAE club’s hard work on their buggy for the upcoming 2024 competition in Michigan, further highlighting the great resources and opportunities that Ship offers students.

His journey continued to Stewart Hall, where he was welcomed at the Teacher Education Programs for the Ever Changing Global Society event. Here, he began by joining a GBLUES fifth-grade class and student teachers in interactive “mirrors and windows” book readings, organized by Dr. Cheryl Ann Slattery. Student teachers read intercultural books to fifth graders, with the purpose of building a sense of diversity and inclusion.

Dr. Khalid Mumin, Pennsylvania's Secretary of Higher Education returns to Shippensburg University

Following thereafter, student teachers at Shippensburg University gave an introduction of themselves to Mumin, in which he movingly addressed them. Mumin reflected on his educational journey and the challenges he faced, urging student teachers to “treasure the moments” and embrace innovation within their teaching practices. 

He provided words of wisdom, sharing that teachers should “accept students at their very best and at some of their low points”. He explained how teachers play a vital role in shaping society and encouraged aspiring educators to build meaningful connections with their classrooms, stating “You are the future of education, have fun with it. Don’t ever fall out of love with teaching.” 

As Dr. Mumin’s visit came to a close, his presence and personal approach served as an example of what a strong leader in education should represent and uphold. His journey back to Ship was met with much appreciation and reaffirmed the importance of educators and administrative leaders across the state of Pennsylvania.