Michael Albright, Ph.D. graduated from Millersville University in 2006. Read more about his professional journey after his undergraduate experience below!
When I began my undergraduate career at Millersville, I had intended to graduate with a BSE in English to become a high school teacher. Four years later in 2006, I graduated with my BSE, a BA in English, and a minor in French.
Millersville occupies a special place for me professionally and personally. Not only did I learn the craft of teaching, but also I benefited from the wisdom and dedication of dedicated scholars in literature, English education, and linguistics. I thrived in the classroom as a student and knew that in order to be a successful teacher, I had much more to learn in my discipline.
In 2006, I began my graduate career at Lehigh University in Bethlehem where I obtained both my MA and Ph.D. My dissertation focused on the dramatic representation of schoolmasters in Early Modern English drama, and I considered how their staging reflected or shaped emergent conceptions of professionalization.
Throughout my seven years at Lehigh, I was able to remain in the classroom as a teacher of composition, and I also began tutoring in the Writing Center. I knew that teaching would always be a priority for me professionally, so I actively sought opportunities to work with students during the academic year and in the summers.
Because the job market in higher education took a hit during my time at Lehigh, I made it a point to keep my PA certification in secondary education current. I also applied widely to public and independent schools, eventually securing a position as a teacher of concurrent enrollment English in rural Virginia. This opportunity led to a two-year stint as a concurrent enrollment teacher at a public residential STEM school in South Carolina.
In 2016, I made the move to higher education. I am now in my fourth year of a tenure-track assistant professorship at Southwest Minnesota State University. I am primarily responsible for working within our University’s concurrent enrollment program called College Now, and I support about twenty different high school teachers per semester. In addition, I serve on various committees, teach on campus and online when asked, and engage in research.
I would not find myself where I am today had I not kept an open mind about teaching in different settings or roles. As an undergrad, I had no idea about concurrent enrollment, yet I always knew that I wanted to occupy a place in secondary or higher education. Now, I enjoy the best of both worlds.
Millersville’s dedication to teacher training and its commitment to staffing classes with professors provided me a strong professional and scholarly background that has supported a host of exciting career moves.
-Michael Albright, Ph.D.