Scott Strait, a Brunswick Middle School social studies teacher, was named the Frederick County Public Schools 2016-2017 Teacher of the Year.
Why did you choose to pursue a graduate degree?
Not only would a graduate degree enhance my career, it was personally gratifying to reach that level of educational attainment.
Why did you choose Hood College Graduate School?
Hood College was recommended to me by a colleague who was attending classes at Hood at the time. Hood has a very positive reputation regionally and I was aware that the education courses offered at Hood were highly valued within Frederick County Public Schools.
How did your degree help you further your professional or personal life?
I can vividly remember a conversation that I had with a school administrator. She had conducted a formal observation in my classroom and we were debriefing afterwards. She was very impressed with the lesson and the strategies I had used in teaching the class. At one point during our meeting she asked, “Where did you learn those strategies?”. I shared that many of the strategies I had used during the lesson I learned through my graduate program at Hood.
Who is your favorite faculty member and why?
There are two exceptional professors that come to mind. For classes in education, Frank Sweeney was hands down my favorite teacher. His life experience and passion for “getting education right” was inspirational and led many of us to reevaluate the reasons why we entered the field. He was a patient and kind instructor—the type of teacher that we all strive to be and the kind we hope our children have in school. When it came to history courses, my favorite instructor was Rusty Monhollon. He had an intriguing way of making history come alive at the graduate level and I’m thankful for his willingness to help me with initiatives at my school that went above and beyond his responsibilities as a graduate school faculty member.
What would you share with prospective students about your graduate experience at Hood?
I would highly recommend the Hood College graduate school. The faculty and staff truly care about your success and they value your individual contributions as students. Your experiences will be valuable—far more than the cost of tuition. Expect to use what you learn immediately in your field.