Melissa Bohrer '20
Melissa Bohrer ’20 was looking for a program that would allow her to complete her degree while balancing life as a full-time kindergarten teacher, mother, and wife. She found the online library media program at Fisher met all her needs as an adult learner.
“I was very nervous as an older student coming back to school for another degree, but the professors, faculty, and staff have worked really hard to get to know me and meet me where I am as a learner and an educator,” she shared.
Bohrer emphasized the online format was a critical component to her success as a student and shares that the bulk of her graduate work takes place at the end of her already full workday after her family has eaten dinner.
The program has already helped her grow as a professional and advance her career. While in the program, Bohrer was able to apply for and obtain a position as a librarian in her school district. She said the experience allowed her to apply her coursework directly to her daily work as a teacher and librarian.
“I can't say enough about how relevant the learning was to actual teaching practices and current trends in education.”
She looks forward to continued growth as a library media professional after completing her degree.
Bohrer advises incoming graduate students to “jump in with both feet and make connections with other students and professors. These connections will allow you to not only be more invested in the program but will also create great professional bridges.”
Jennifer Costello '20
Library Media Specialist, Laurelton-Pardee Intermediate School
Jennifer Costello '20 was drawn to Fisher's Online Library Media program because of its flexibility. A full-time teacher, she wanted a program that allowed her to work on her own schedule around her family and work responsibilities. She found the program challenging, but manageable despite her busy life. She shares, "At first it is very overwhelming – it is a ton of rigorous work in a really short period of time. But it is doable and worth it. The year will fly by and at the end, you'll have your graduate degree and be ready to start a new journey."
The program faculty helped her to grow as a professional and provided her with the skills she needed to gain employment in her field while still completing her degree. My first four spring and summer courses really prepared me for my interview, and I was able to speak about my goals and philosophy as a library media specialist," she observed. Costello describes the faculty as both understanding and flexible and praised their support, advice, and encouragement.
She is grateful for the supportive connections she was able to make in the program and advises future program participants to reach out to their cohort colleagues. "Set up a group chat or meet in person – you are all going through it together and it's nice to have others to talk to. Don't be afraid to ask questions and ask for help!"
As a full-time library media specialist in a middle school setting, Costello looks forward to growing in her role and learning from colleagues. She credits the program for equipping her with the skills she needs to be successful in the long-term. "I really love the flexibility of the program and the fact that it still felt personal from behind a desk. I found the program to be affordable, flexible to my schedule, and meaningful."