With over 25 years of teaching experience in an elementary school classroom under her belt, Julie Ann McCoy Percevecz was under zero pressure to add to her professional credentials. A second grade teacher and a gifted and talented program coordinator at her school, she already held a Bachelor’s degree in elementary education and a Master’s in counseling. Yet, at the age of 50, this Schertz, TX resident has expanded her academic arsenal even further by graduating from Ashford University with a Master of Arts in Teaching and Learning with Technology (MATLT).
Along with the eventual goal of transitioning to becoming an online instructor, Julie cites her desire to improve and enhance her teaching ability in the classroom as a major driving force in pursuing this unique degree. “Technology is the future in education. My classroom kiddos benefit from this degree every day. The tools and knowledge I have gained from the program are priceless, and I share them with my coworkers on a day-to-day basis as well.”
The degree’s positive impact on her ability to shine professionally is clear. Recently, while developing a program for her gifted students, Julie drew from her Ashford coursework to develop a training presentation that her whole district then used. Additionally, many projects that have to do with technology now often fall to her, a position she relishes being in. “I have led the way with my team several times on developing lessons that have been used throughout the school.”
The impact has been no less profound on her students. “There were several activities I pulled directly from my MATLT course activities, including the ability to convert a typical lecture lesson into an online activity that was 100% completed at home with parents and presented in class. Everyone was excited about the whole process.”
This latest step in Julie’s life-long quest for learning is one that has benefitted so many areas of her life. “Ashford pushed me intellectually. Going to Ashford has been a confidence booster for me to pursue inquiries regarding technologies used in our classrooms today. I now see that without knowledge of what there is to be offered, one would never know to push for cutting-edge technologies.”
She follows that up with advice to others in a similar stage in their career: “Your education is something that's never too late to receive and will never be regretted.”