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|Mary Therese Perez Hattori|
"With an awareness of problems of practice at all levels of an educational system, this program offered a holistic and experiential approach to resolving such problems. It provided opportunities to gain skills and information which I could apply to analyzing, articulating, and addressing challenges in the field."
Mary Therese Perez Hattori earned her degree in Professional Educational Practice in 2014 at the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa. She was originally drawn to this degree/program because it was the next logical step in her career. She wanted a program that aligned with her Chamoru heritage and cultural beliefs regarding the importance of helping others and empowering students. With an awareness of problems of practice at all levels of an educational system, her program offered a holistic and experiential approach to resolving such problems. It provided opportunities to gain skills and information which she could apply to analyzing, articulating, and addressing challenges in the field. Her degree has helped her to more effectively for advocate for culturally appropriate leadership development for Indigenous students.
Advice for prospective EdD students
The decision to enter a doctoral program is a weighty one that will impose demands and impact many aspects of your daily life, especially if it is a full-time cohort program of limited duration. When pondering my decision to pursue this degree, I was led to this Castaneda quote: “Does this path have a heart? All paths are the same: they lead nowhere. They are paths going through the bush, or into the bush. In my own life I could say I have traversed long, long paths, but I am not anywhere. Does this path have a heart? If it does, the path is good; if it doesn't, it is of no use. Both paths lead nowhere; but one has a heart, the other doesn't. One makes for a joyful journey; as long as you follow it, you are one with it. The other will make you curse your life. One makes you strong; the other weakens you.” Having completed the program, this quote is even more apt. This program was as enriching as it was arduous; it is indeed a path with heart, a good path, a joyful journey that made me stronger personally and professionally.