Student Q+A: Johnny Edwards, Portage Assistant Superintendent

Johnny Edwards, a doctoral student in the educational leadership program and assistant superintendent of operations for Portage Public Schools. 

What is your favorite thing about the program?

The flexibility. My advisors laid out the program for me in terms of the course of study from my introductory courses all the way through my dissertation. What I have found to be quite valuable within the program's flexibility is that some of my courses are exclusively virtual, while another class my be both synchronous and asynchronous that meets only four or five times a semester. Some courses only meet every so often on the weekends. 

Johnny Edwards

What makes this program unique?

Faculty accessibility. My advisor, along with the professors that I have had in all of my courses have been readily accessible. A quick email to them renders an immediate response. They are always available virtually by Webex or Zoom, and I have found that to be a great resource.

What is your current role and how does the program prepare you for what you are doing in your daily work?

It is very difficult to ignore what the research is teaching you in class and not apply that into your daily work or life. I am currently the assistant superintendent of operations for Portage Public Schools and often times reading research and literature on leadership skills and principles and theories as well as studying case studies, I am able to use those skills and the research to support what I am working on. In certain courses, you are given a project to implement something on your job with your colleagues and evolve our district. That was one of the things I found extremely beneficial.