Niagara's Ph.D. Program: Empowering Excellence

by Shellonnee' Chinn on November 29, 2021
Niagara's Ph.D. Program: Empowering Excellence

Shellonnee' is a student in the Ph.D. in Leadership and Policy program. While obtaining her Ph.D., she is also working as a departmental scholarship student in the College of Education. 

At the outset, I would like to express my excitement about being a doctoral candidate at Niagara University.

My philosophy of education is governed by my experiences in education, training, mentoring, parenting, management, consulting, coaching, and my pro se litigation in federal court. These life experiences have all solidified my desire to pursue my journey in higher education. I know my education at Niagara will enhance my growth as a leader, by being equipped with the experiences that will forge a trajectory of growth for myself, my future endeavors, and that of my community. The educational mission of the university, its’ long history and my program of study, intersects with many of my longstanding educational and professional aspirations. Niagara University’s mission is consistent with my own beliefs, my leadership and my desire to change the lives and impact those who will benefit from me acquiring my Ph.D. from Niagara University.

The program’s flexibility, the faculty leadership and personal connections have delivered in numerous capacities. The continued support at Niagara has helped me tap into my existing skill set, while further improving my capacity to improve organizations across many working communities. The relationships within these communities, particularly on issues that fall at the intersection of race, equity, cultural diversity, and leadership and policy are exemplified in the classroom through teaching and the coaching of future educators and leaders. It is also my intent to positively increase the outcomes of organizations through the training and development of teachers, school leaders, boards, the governing body, as well as the employees of organizations.  I will endeavor to continue the work in improving the cultural climate in various capacities upon the completion of the program.

It is also my belief that there is a strong need for people who are qualified to have equitable opportunities, where they are empowered by creating their own table or having a welcomed seat at the table of organizations committed to this work. This table should include an equitable opportunity to be successful, regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation or socioeconomic status.  An educator should probe and observe to find a student's true motivation, their driving force, the "What", their "Why", the spark that holds their attention, that keeps them invested when their faith is wavering, and they are faced with challenges. Niagara University continues to do this for me as a student and allows me the platform to ignite this spark in those I collaborate with and educate.

For more information on the Ph.D. in Leadership and Policy program please contact us or call 716.286.8475.