Student Profiles: Educational Leadership MA Archives

Jay Dowd

By Hannah Michael on November 23, 2015 11:54 AM


Jay Dowd earned his Masters at Sonoma State in Educational Leadership. He is the principal at Spring Creek Elementary School in the Rincon Valley School District. He previously worked in a teaching capacity as well as a principal for fifteen years in the Bay Area. At Spring Creek Elementary School, while developing his cognate project, he worked on issues relating to improving school culture and learning in what ways instructional leaders should develop people within an organization to have the largest positive impact on student learning.

Dowd's cognate project focused on implementing a two part teacher evaluation system focusing on mini-observations and follow up conversations. The mini-observations included a 5-10 minute classroom visit conjoined with a follow up conversation between the evaluator and the teacher shortly after the observation period. Dowd's intention was to determine if cognitive coaching was an effective way to purposefully use the evaluation system while still preserving trust among the staff and maintaining a collaborative school environment. He is passionate about finding was to build a common cause and authentically enhance the performance of individual participants on a team through his work as a leader in education.

Ed Navarro

By Pamela Van Halsema on October 9, 2015 1:22 PM

Ed Navarro is an Educational Leadership Credential candidate with a background in teaching.

Ed is enthusiastic about constantly improving his teaching strategies and challenging himself to rethink how he connects with students. He is interested in building curriculum around student learning and making the education experience far more student centered. He appreciates how the credential program has offered him the opportunity to expand his lens on education.

Kirsten Sanft

By Pamela Van Halsema on October 9, 2015 1:05 PM

Kirsten Sanft is an Educational Leadership Credential candidate at Sonoma State with a background in education as a teacher.

Kirsten expresses how the courses at Sonoma have informed her in regards to the history of education, how it has evolved and how to use these learnings to inform her decisions as an administrator. She discusses the importance of providing a strong base in education to make a difference for the future of society.

Suzanne Tribbey

By Pamela Van Halsema on October 9, 2015 12:56 PM

Suzanne Tribbey is an Educational Leadership Credential candidate at Sonoma State, coming from a background in special education as a school psychologist

Coming from years of experience in the special education field, Suzanne has appreciated being able to look at education with a wider lens, to be able to bring both the special education and general education populations together to reach a common goal. She feels that she is now able to reach more students at the administrative level in order to affect greater change.

Sharon Howell

By Pamela Van Halsema on October 9, 2015 12:49 PM

Sharon Howell is an Educational Leadership Credential candidate who has had several years of experience in education as a teacher, teacher's aid, counselor and volunteer.

Sharon discusses her lifelong passion for learning and how much she appreciates the opportunity to continue her journey in education. She also offers how so much of her learning from the program has not only come from professors but also her fellow students.

Jennifer Hansen

By Pamela Van Halsema on October 9, 2015 12:13 PM

Jennifer Hansen is an Educational Leadership Credential candidate at Sonoma State and came to the program after accepting a job as an assistant principal.

Jennifer is excited to be a part of the program so that she can be better prepared to help students become successful both inside and outside the classroom. She appreciates how applicable the program has been to her job and how she has been able to connect with students and parents in different ways.

Wayne Street Jr.

By Russell Brackett on December 3, 2014 2:44 PM

Wayne Street, Candidate for the Master's Degree in Educational Leadership, received a Bachelor's of Arts degree in History from Sonoma State University as well as 
Multiple and Single Subject Credentials from Chapman University. He has been a 
Social Studies teacher at Petaluma High for the past 13 years. Wayne is also an 
Educational Consultant and conducts on-site training with an emphasis in classroom management.

For his master's cognate project in Curriculum, Teaching and Learning, Wayne made a concerted effort to research and gain a deeper understanding of the Common Core State Standards, as well as to research effective practices in the process of adopting and changing his current classroom curriculum. The project also explored the attributes of leadership and steps that are necessary when implementing curriculum change.

Nicole Sabatier

By Russell Brackett on December 3, 2014 2:29 PM

Nicole Sabatier picture

Nicole Sabatier is married and a mother of two children. She graduated from Humboldt State University with a Bachelor Degree and hoped to work in Elementary Education. Nicole then immediately went for a Multiple Subject teaching credential. After teaching elementary school for seven years she decided to go back to school at Sonoma State University for an Administrative Services Credential.

For her Educational Leadership master's cognate project, she decided to research what factors contribute to making a positive classroom, school, district and community culture. Nicole designed methods to create a more positive school culture through a series of classroom, school and community events. Collaborating with peers in the classroom and community on a variety of projects geared her school and community in a more positive direction.

Technology played a pivotal role in her efforts as she developed methods to impact and grow and nurture a healthy community culture in her district.

Molly Nagel

By Lina Raffaelli on October 23, 2013 3:15 PM

Molly Nagel with posterMolly Nagel was born in San Francisco and raised in Marin County. She attended College of Marin and then Sonoma State in the 1970's where she earned a B.S in Psychology.

Early on Molly had an interest in teaching special education. Her mother was a SPED student who was very well-supported by her teachers growing up; Molly felt passionately about doing for others what they did for her mother, in catering to her special needs.

She worked for a family business for a long time, until the business closed and she was given the opportunity to pursue a new career path. She worked as a resource teacher and later became a full-inclusive SPED teacher at the high school level. She decided to further her education, and completed the SPED and Educational Leadership Master's program in May of this year.

Molly believes that great teachers can make a difference in the lives of children with significant learning disabilities. She wants to better understand how they learn, and believes every student can. She hopes to be able to teach fellow educators about inclusion and supporting students with disabilities. She also hopes to create professional development opportunities to help fellow Special Ed teachers.

She wants to convey that her experience at SSU has been wonderful. She has enjoyed her professors and teachers and feels very well prepared for the job. Specifically the program has bettered her understand of how people learn and how to modify curriculum to fit individual needs.