This page contains past and present messages from Dr. John Meyer, MLC's Director of Graduate Studies and Continuing Education.
People sometimes use the expression “thinking outside the box” to describe the importance of taking on a new or fresh perspective. When teachers seek graduate studies, they are looking for an outside perspective. MLC Graduate Studies makes it a priority to provide its graduate students with perspectives that represent the best and latest ideas in education.
Professional growth is one way many Christian teachers seek to serve their schools and students faithfully. While educators use advanced study to better meet their current duties, these learning experiences are also God’s way of preparing them for future opportunities to serve him, his church, and their neighbors.
Martin Luther College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA). The commission accredits more than 1,000 colleges and universities in 19 states, including the state universities and colleges in Michigan, Minnesota, and Wisconsin. MLC is approved to offer the Master of Science in Education degree. Why is this accreditation important?
“You get what you pay for” can be good advice, but it’s not always true. Better advice is to seek maximum value for minimum cost. Many Lutheran schools are tremendous values. Parents who choose Lutheran schools get more than they pay for because their children receive a quality education together with the gospel of Jesus at a low cost. The tuition at most Lutheran schools reflects the goal to freely share the gospel, not turn a profit. Like Lutheran schools, the MLC graduate studies program is a tremendous value.
When MLC established its master’s program in 2004, teachers told us that one factor was imperative: flexibility. Because their time was limited, they needed a program that fit their schedule. Meaningful learning requires time and energy, and a high-quality accredited graduate program must meet certain expectations. So while we couldn’t reduce the time needed to earn a degree, what we could do was infuse our program with flexibility so that teachers could make it work with their busy schedules.
WELS teachers today have opportunities for professional growth that previous WELS teachers did not. At one time, many WELS teachers longed for a degree program where everything they learned applied directly to what they did. They wanted to learn from and with other WELS teachers who understood their ministry. But until recently, the thought of such a learning community of WELS teachers seemed unattainable.
The road to a graduate degree can involve some unexpected detours. Some of our 2012 master’s graduates shared their detours. One graduate had twins while completing her degree; at least four accepted calls and moved; and another needed to manage a personal issue. Despite the challenges, they all finished their degrees! How did that happen?
One word describes Martin Luther College master’s degree students – leaders. They embody the kind of servant-leadership that Jesus modeled and encouraged (see Matthew 20: 25-28). MLC graduate students serve as leaders by modeling professionalism, by serving their students through continual growth, and by inspiring others to do the same. As I talk with MLC graduate students, they describe how they model, serve, and inspire.
Quality is important to Martin Luther College graduate students. They are busy teachers who work hard for the Lord and for their students. They need their graduate studies to provide maximum ministry benefit. At MLC teachers find the quality they need in graduate studies. Read what our 2012 master’s graduates say about MLC's quality.
The quality of an education hinges upon the strength of its faculty. In their first semester end-of-course surveys, graduate students revealed that they consider their instructors to be a strength of MLC’s graduate program. Graduate students overwhelmingly rated their instructors as knowledgeable, responsive, and able to provide valuable feedback and advice. One reason MLC graduate faculty can provide insight is that they know both their content and the context of Lutheran schools.