Graduate Reaches Her Goals in Education And Earns Her Master’s Degree

Ask Donna Patrick, an alumna of UC Online’s Educational Leadership program, about her path to a master’s degree, and she may tell you that it was a long journey—one that took more than ten years.

Her Path to a Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership

Donna’s career in education started while she was a small business owner and cosmetologist when she received the opportunity to teach in Career and TechEd. An opportunity she took. Adding upon her skillset and knowledge, Donna went on to earn her associate’s and bachelor’s degrees in education.

The first time she thought about getting her master’s in educational leadership, she was teaching. During her career, she had a couple of fellow educators tell her she should get her administrator’s license.

After that, Donna jumped all in—having a week break between earning her bachelor’s degree at another institution and starting the master’s program at UC Online.

The Motivation to Earn Her MEd in Educational Leadership

When asked about the motivation behind earning her master’s degree in educational leadership she says that she felt like it was the right time.

“I was seeing opportunities come up that I wasn’t qualified for. And in my field, I had one opportunity and that was to be a teacher in cosmetology, which was very limiting,” says Donna. “The Master’s in Educational Leadership gives me a completely different conversation in the workforce.”

Once she started, she was set on earning her degree. She says the fact that the program was completely online made it accessible for her as a mom but also as a daughter with aging parents.

“There’s no way I could have gone on campus somewhere because of my home responsibilities,” says Donna. “So, for me it was online or no opportunity.”

Why She Chose the University of Cincinnati Online

Donna planned on enrolling at another university for her master’s degree, but she couldn’t get her transcripts fast enough so that university withdrew her acceptance into their program.

Soon after, a Student Success Coordinator from UC Online contacted her. Donna explained what happened to her at the other university, and the Student Success Coordinator helped Donna enroll as a non-matriculating student at UC Online.

Not to be delayed, Donna began at UC Online without being accepted into the educational leadership program. After her transcripts came in, she was accepted into the master’s program without missing a beat.

Student Support from Day One

Donna felt the support from day one. “Any questions I ever had, I could call them,” she says, speaking of her Student Success Coordinator. “Every question I ever had was answered, and they just made the process so much less stressful.”

About the Program and Faculty

After completing her master’s degree, Donna felt prepared to pass the Ohio Assessments for Educators (OAE) exam to get her admin license. She explains how the courses in the master’s program were laid out and designed attributed to her confidence. She says the professors at the University of Cincinnati were outstanding and the courses aligned properly with the exams.

“I’ve talked to some other students who have been in this program, too,” says Donna “And they only always mentioned the classes and the real-world experience and how helpful that was.”

Advice to Those Looking to Pursue a Master’s in Educational Leadership

Donna credits UC Online’s Master’s of Educational Leadership program in making her feel, ‘completely prepared’ for the next step in her career.

“It’s very well-thought-out and planned,” says Donna, speaking about the Master’s of Educational Leadership program at UC Online. “And a graduate of this program should feel confident moving on.”

Take Your Next Step In Education Administration with a Master’s Degree.

To learn more about our Master of Education in Educational Leadership program visit,

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