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Before EssayEdge:

My purpose for seeking a Doctorate Degree in Educational Leadership is to expand my


knowledge of theory and research methods as it pertains to education. I especially want
to fine-tune my research skills as I feel that the importance of gaining research skills is
imperative to becoming a lifelong learner and developing intellectual self-actualization
as I prepare myself for a career in Education. I realize the importance of gaining
credibility among my future colleagues and people that I will be serving in the field.
My view of Education is that of a reformist. I have a particular interest in the
improvement of homeless individuals, single mothers and women of color. Because of
my own experience with both homelessness and single motherhood, I know the feeling
of helplessness as you are sinking deeper and deeper in desperation that you feel that
you will never recover from it. I have seen how generations of these people have become
prisoners by being illiterate and /or insufficiently educated around our city with little or
no hope of getting free from their bondage. Although I have struggled hard to get myself
out of this situation I refuse to forget.
I have strove to make a difference wherever I can. As volunteer at Christian Assistance
Ministry I witnessed the overworked conditions that the social workers and volunteers
faced. Worn from these conditions these dedicated workers had no respite from their
daily work of feeding, clothing and providing funds for the homeless and families who
have found themselves in a desperate situation. Although I had many job
responsibilities at Christian Assistance Ministry the most common was that of
interviewer where I assessed the clients situation and offered help either monetary or
that of food and clothing. I soon found that intake and interview forms as well as
information that was distributed to the patrons. I took it upon myself after approval
from the Director to redo and modernize these forms and lists. Also I had initiated lists
of other agencies that would assist clients find additional help that they needed in the
Greater Houston Area. One of theses lists that I have generated has been used by City
Public Service to refer customers that are in need of financial assistance to pay their
utility bills. I had contacted each of the agencies personally to get up to date hours,
addresses and contact names and numbers before adding them to the list. Many patrons
of Christian Assistance Ministry were included in my project as I compiled lists of job
hotlines, shelters and affordable housing options. This inclusion also gave many of the
patrons a sense of community collaboration, as I would discuss information with them.
In my present job at SeaNet I felt that it was necessary to know what our clients, Small
businesses Development Center and Small business administration Counselors felt
about the services we were providing them since in the job we do we don't have personal
contact with them. With my directors approval I sent out surveys asking various
questions about the service we provide and got an overwhelming response. This
information was used in a quarterly report that is submitted to our funding agency in

Washington DC. At SeaNet I am known as an individual that prides herself in thorough


research techniques. I am often being asked to do research for special projects that are
beyond our usual information requests. Most recently I have done research on the
availability of renewable energy sources in South Texas. This research was for a
consortium of various Universities in Texas, The Economic Development Center, Solar
Energy and Brooks Air Force Base investigating who are examining the feasibility using
various energy sources.
I am also an advocate of 21st Century Learning Centers that would provide a safe refuge
for the millions of latch-key children in this country that go home to an empty house on
any given school day. Along with that thought are full service schools that would provide
many of the health and social services so desperately needed in many school districts. I
have and continue to research community programs that are available to school children
and their families. I recently collaborated with three such agencies (Upward Bound,
Peace Center, and Davis....) in Houston to present to my fellow classmates the
importance and impact community collaboration makes on our schools in our city. I also
provided information in the form of brochures and handouts about other such
organizations that could assist in the needs of their own schools. I feel that it is
imperative that every teacher, principle and administrative staff in all schools be aware
of these resources in our community. After the presentation many of my classmates who
are teachers and administrators contacted several of the organizations that I had
introduced them to in that hour presentation and have started programs within their
schools.
Although I have not yet formally been employed in the educational work environment I
have been a mentor for many students attending Davis Middle School as well as a tutor
for several home-schooled children. During the years of my own children attending
school, I was very involved in their schools both private and public and took on many
organizational and leadership roles. I served on many boards and was very active in
assisting instructors and administrators in the schools my children attended. Because of
these 15 years of experience, I am very familiar with the diverse educational system in
Houston.
I have helped develop leadership in others by serving as an example of how far you can
go in education with dedication and hard work. By being a student I have been example
to others who didn't feel they could juggle school with work and raising a family. I have
a very hard working and decisive character that has earned me a 4.0 GPA. I have never
been one to do anything halfway but instead show the dedication and integrity it takes to
finish a project to its fullest.
My short-term goals include: establishing a network of scholars and future
administrators, participating in a rigorous intellectual process.

My short-term goals include taking full advantage of the Doctorate program to fine-tune
and learn more about research and writing skills. I want to use and improve my
knowledge in quantitative research using programs such as SPSS and Microcase, in
tandem with qualitative researching techniques. I want to develop a clear and concise
understanding of leadership and the education profession and how the two mesh as one
while enjoying the opportunity to develop a network of scholars. To experience the
community and closeness that my fellow cohort mates can provide enjoy the
opportunity to brainstorm and discuss pressing issues in our schools today and how
we/I/they plan on changing them for tomorrow. After researching many doctorate
programs in the area I feel that Texas A&M is unique in the standpoint of wanting to
create a bonding collaborative experience among all the Educational Leadership
Students and especially among cohort mates. I feel that the young and innovative
program suits the fresh outlook on Educational Leadership that I am in search of. I have
seen the department of education blossom in the last 4 years that I have been involved
with it. I can appreciate the effort and future seeking work that is going on in the
department, everyone has the attitude of moving forward and evolving with the times.
To me this is the true example of reform, there is no lip service in this program, and it is
practicing what it preaches. I know that in the classes that I have taken there is open
invitation for research and suggestions for improvement solicited. Although I have no
trouble working independently on projects it is reassuring that there will be others to
inspire the creative juices that comes from group interaction that this program invites. I
will look forward to working with professors that I have worked with before and I am
anxious to meet those I have not. There is camaraderie in the Education Department
that I do not feel is quite like any other at Texas A&M.
My long-term goals take what I have learned in my master's courses in combination
with the doctorate courses that will well have prepared me to enter any job in Education.
I intend to prepare much of the research using the foundations for a higher level of
research I have established at Texas A&M and be published and make a difference in
how the underprivileged will be educated. I know that the preparation for that higher
plane of achievement that has been instilled in me will serve me well in any Educational
or Governmental Occupation I will find myself in. Above all I will be secure in my ability
to someway participate in the nation's urgent need to educate moor efficiently and
comprehensively.

After EssayEdge:
As a single mother who has confronted homelessness and poverty, I am committed to
reforming public education. I have a particular interest in improving the accessibility of
schooling to homeless individuals, single mothers, and disadvantaged women of color.
As a result of my own experiences, I am familiar with the despair and frustration
endemic to individuals struggling to survive. I am convinced that increasing individuals'
access to education can make the difference between despondency and hope. I am

applying for my doctorate in educational leadership so that I can pursue my lifemission: to make education accessible to all.
I began preparing for this mission by volunteering as an intake coordinator at the
Christian Assistance Ministry (CAM). Although I had many responsibilities, the role that
consumed most of my time and energy was interviewing clients and assessing their
physical and emotional needs. One of my greatest contributions was streamlining and
updating the paperwork associated with CAM's intake process. I also generated an
updated resource list that included many service agencies in the Houston area. By
personally contacting each agency to acquire contact information and to learn about its
services, I facilitated greater communication between service organizations and ensured
that my clients had access to necessary aid.
In my present position as Research Analyst at SeaNet, my primary role is ascertaining
the needs of client networks. As an umbrella group, SeaNet has only limited contact with
small business development centers, and my job is to ensure that our organization
meets these centers' needs. When I took the initiative to send out surveys asking
agencies to rate our group's effectiveness, I received an overwhelming response. The
information I compiled was so revealing that it was published in the quarterly report
that is sent to our funding agency in Washington, D.C. In addition, I have been involved
in a number of special, innovative projects. Recently, I analyzed the availability of
renewable energy resources in Southern Texas in tandem with The Economic
Development Center, Solar Energy, Brooks Air Force Base, and research universities in
Texas.
As part of my master's thesis, I collaborated with Upward Bound, Peace Center, and the
Davis Education Foundation to underline the importance of community cooperation in
public schools. I also provided informational brochures and handouts detailing other
such organizations that could assist with the individualized needs of schools. I was
gratified when my efforts resulted in teachers and administrators contacting several of
the organizations I had mentioned so that the organizations could start outreach in their
educational districts.
Although I have not yet been employed in the educational sector, my master's work, as
well as my life experiences, has given me a nuanced and sophisticated knowledge of the
educational field. I have acted as a mentor at Davis Middle School for many years and
have tutored a number of home-schooled children. When my own children attended
school, I was involved in their schools' organizations and often took on a leadership role
on educational committees. I served on many boards and was active in assisting both
instructors and administrators. Fifteen years of experience has familiarized me with the
diverse needs of Houston's students, and it has prepared me to act on their behalf.
My short-term goals include advancing my knowledge of quantitative research using
programs such as SPSS and Microcas, and acquiring a sophisticated understanding of

how to become a leader in the educational field. I wish to use these skills to promote
empirical studies in education that can help direct educational reform.
I am attracted to the doctoral program at Texas A&M for precisely this reason. Only
Texas A&M offers the kind of collaborative experience that suits my personal needs and
professional goals. Over the past four years, I have seen the department blossom into a
challenging and innovative program. I am excited about the program's direction and its
emphasis on practical application. I appreciate that every course offers the opportunity
for independent research, and that the faculty is open to student suggestions for
improvement. The flexibility and patience of the faculty and the talent of the students
makes Texas A&M a singular choice for my doctoral degree.
My long-term goal is to use my past experience and Texas A&M training to help make
education accessible to all, particularly the underprivileged. Whether I am working in
the public or private sector, I look forward to addressing the nation's urgent need to
educate its citizens efficiently and comprehensively.