What were the reasons behind not performing well in your previous academic opportunities and what has changed in your life for you to be successful in the requested program?
Although I have always been dedicated to my goal of becoming a leader in the special education field, uncontrollable health problems beginning in late 2010 forestalled my degree progress. I was suffering by what would be later diagnosed as narcolepsy, inhibiting me from meeting deadlines and getting the most out of my education. The severity of my condition forced me to not only discontinue classes but also retire from my position as supervisor of special education for the Wilson School District, Pennsylvania. A year later, I was diagnosed with Lyme’s Disease, further impacting my ability to pursue my special education career and studies.
Luckily, I have recovered from all health issues, having returned to work as a special education supervisor in New Jersey. I have held two positions as a supervisor, currently serving the Trenton Public Schools, one of the largest in the region. I believe this position has allowed me to showcase my leadership skills in analyzing district-wide trends, using this data to improve the curriculum, and thus, the quality of life for students in need of special education.
Prior to my health issues, I was maintaining a GPA of 3.62, having completed my first Masters with Distinction, and my undergraduate program Magna Cum Laude. Aside from my professional positions in the New Jersey and Pennsylvania school systems, since my illness, I have also integrated myself in my local community through extracurricular teaching. These include Faith Formation classes at my local church and after-school seminars for teachers in my school district on subjects such as Structured Teaching, Discrete Trial Training and Picture Exchange Communication (PECS). The combination of an unpredictable illness has, unfortunately, cut my higher education short, but I believe my recent motivation and involvement, combined with an excellent academic performance before my illness, shows that I am ready to continue my professional studies. I hope you will consider my application to return to the program, to perfect my professional skills, and better serve the special education needs of students in the New Jersey area.