Kevin Giffhorn '10

Why did you choose to pursue a graduate degree?
Since I needed to earn credits for my Advanced Professional Certification, I thought it would make more sense to earn a full graduate degree.

Why did you choose Hood College Graduate School?
Initially I was enrolled in a Curriculum and Instruction program at another university. However, when I saw an advertisement for the Mathematics Education program, I knew this was what I wanted. This program helped me improve as a math teacher and, by taking graduate level math classes, developed my overall math knowledge.

How did your degree help you further your professional or personal life?
By enrolling in a combination of current educational programs and higher-level graduate math classes, it was the best of both worlds. I improved my approach to daily instruction by taking courses that discussed the pedagogy of teaching. I use many of the lessons and techniques we discussed in my Teaching Algebra course on a daily basis. I was able to gain the experience that many math teachers lackā€”an actual answer to the commonly asked question, “When are we ever going to use this in real life?”

Who is your favorite faculty member and why?
I had Professor Christy Graybeal for many of my math education classes as well as an adviser for my capstone project. Her in-depth knowledge of the current trends in math education along with her calm demeanor made for classes rich with open dialogue and sharing of ideas.

What would you share with prospective students about your graduate experience at Hood?
If you want to be a teacher who earns a graduate degree, there are many places with adequate programs. However, if you want to be an informed and introspective math teacher who can truly help students fully grasp and understand mathematics based on current research, educational trends and higher -evel mathematics, pursue a graduate degree in the Mathematics Education program at Hood College.