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I was born on October 10, 1953 at Fort Campbell, Ky.  I have been married for 39 plus years and have one 36 year old son.  I have lived all over the world and am currently calling La Junta, Colorado as my home base until I move again.  I have a long educational background, which you can find on the My Education Page.  I have worked in the education fields, construction, manufacturing, mechanical, food service, military, and religious positions since I was 14 years of age.

My hobbies and other interests include camping, fishing, hunting, canoeing, woodworking, leather craft, music (vocal and instrumental), cooking, and exploring new things.

Some of my extracurricular activities include mission trips to Waveland, Mississippi, and White Mountain, Arizona, Casas Por Cristo, various Vacation Bible Schools programs at least once every summer, and other church activities.  One of my other activities was being a Boy Scout where I received the Medal of Merit for performing life saving first aid for car wreck victims in June 1969.

I have belonged to many secular and non-secular organizations and clubs, dependent on my time and interests.  Some of these are, Association for Career and Technical Education of Alaska (ACTE) for the last fours years, Skills USA, Vocational Industrial Clubs of America (VICA), Texas Student Education Association (TSEA), National Education Association Student Program (NEA), Texas Student Teachers Association (TSTA), North Texas Industrial Technology Association (NTITA), Industrial Technology Educators Association (ITEA), and Texas College Industrial Arts Association (TCIAA).

I have been on the National Honor Society for my AAS, BS, MS in Education, and my MS in Educational Leadership degrees.

Steve Abbott

Western Governors University
Master of Science in Educational Leadership

Essay

This paper will cover how my teaching and leadership experiences have prepared me for the role of School Building Principal and/or Assistant Principal.  I will also cover why I have chosen to become a School Principal and/or Assistant Principal and what I hope to accomplish professionally and personally.  I will also identify my School site for this study and practicum and the reasons behind selecting this School.

To begin with, I have had 16 years of teaching experience in Public Education and 20 plus years in Private Education.  The fields that I have taught in are Vocational which included Computer Science, Technology Education 2000, Synergistic Labs, Business Administration, Aviation Maintenance Technician, General Wood Working, and Trades and Industry.  I am licensed and Credentialed in and currently hold a Teacher’s license in these fields and I believe that they have prepared me for a variety of things in life.  This allows me to not only teach in many different aspects of industry but helps me to talk to a variety of people who work in Industry.  I am more able to understand the mind set of these different people and have gained a better schema of where they are at in their particular fields of expertise. 

I have also worked with three different troubled youth programs.  The last one at CBR Youth Connect (aka) Colorado Boys Ranch of  La Junta, Colorado was where  I picked up a new understanding of youth based on my work with the Neuro-Science field.  I worked here as the Vocational Administrator for 3 years.  Because of my work in the field of Industrial Vocational/Technology, I have learned how this enhances the academics of the youth and better prepares them for the real world of work.

In almost every job that I have held, I have been in some form of management level.  I have also been a teacher of teachers and have learned to put their differences into perspective in order for all of us to reach a common goal.  With all of this background I believe that I have most of the requirements to become a School Principal and/or Assistant Principal, but mostly I know enough to know that I have much more to learn and this comes from on the job practical day by day learning. 
I have chosen to become a School principal because it seems to be the next logical step on the ladder for me in education and in my educational career, plus the extra money would not hurt either.  I truly expect to learn so much more about myself and others by becoming a building principal and/or Assistant Principal. 

Professionally I hope to show others in my field how they too can create a winning program in their respective schools using the same program that I am using.  With all of my background and the diversity of others in my building, together we will help each other build a strong educational environment for the youth and to create a great working environment for the staff as well.  One thing I know for sure is that unless the other staff  allow me to lead and show my trust and respect I will never be allowed to be their leader until this happens.  Also leadership is by example!  I would never ask anyone to do anything that I have never done, would not do, or could not do.  I believe in a show and tell philosophy.  I also realize that we want most people to be at an abstract level of thinking, but most are usually still at a comfort level of concrete thinking.

One of my school sites was Las Animas High School.  The reason for this selection for my program of studies is that I specialize in working with at-risk kids.  This school is 80% free and reduced meals and most of the kids are from a single parent family or multi-parent family.  I use my field of Vocation to work in tangent with Academic studies to help the youth help themselves.  I currently teach these youth how to survive in the real world and show them how to put everything together so that they can face reality and have a skill set to use to help them help their family and maybe their own future family as well.  Most of these kids are in a struggle with academics and society and just need to learn that there is hope for them and there is a school out there some where that really cares about them and plans to be there for them and to help them become a winner not just a survivor.

I believe in using both aspects of Academics and Vocational Studies to help these youth become winners and to maybe even break the chain of failure in their world and to create great societal members.  I truly believe that you can give someone a fish and fill their belly, but if you teach them how to fish they will be self supporting for life!

Everyone is a totally different learner and must be addressed as such!  No two learners or teachers are the same and this must be met head on and flexibility must be maintained all the time to have the most successful program possible.  There are no Failures only problems to be solved!