A Doctorate: A Teacher’s Ultimate Level-Up

Ryan Cassel‘23
Journalism Student


Everyone knows a teacher’s job is one of much dedication. They set whole generations up for the lives they have ahead of them. So why do some put in even more work to get the title of Doctor?
Bethel High School proudly has three teachers on its staff that can help answer that.
Dr. Fox is currently a science teacher at Bethel High School. He went back to Western Connecticut State University and graduated with his doctorate in 2022. Dr. Galbraith, currently the Chairperson of the Social Studies Department and Dr. Issa, currently a math teacher, both obtained their doctorate degrees from Western Connecticut State University in 2014.
“I felt strongly that I wanted to work on projects related to improving teaching and learning for all students at Bethel High School and pursuing this degree allowed me to have the opportunity and qualifications to pursue this goal,” said Dr. Galbraith.
The journey to get a degree like this is not easy. Along with timely classes, the workload is not light. There are large assignments and lots of research to be done. Balancing this with a full-time job and a family is a skill within itself, but pulling it off is certainly worth it.
“This took work. Trying to find balance in my life has always been a challenge for me. However, once I committed to the doctoral program, I did my best to manage my coursework and research while prioritizing my work as an educator,” said Dr. Fox.
Dr. Galbraith also had a similar experience in achieving her degree.
“To earn this degree, I took three years of classes and then spent two years conducting a research study and writing my dissertation to share the conclusions and results,” said Dr. Galbraith.
A Doctorate is normally pursued by teachers who are the most dedicated to their job. They strive to understand and better the education system. Fox described schools as the foundation of our democracy because in schools students learn to interact with one another and are taught essential skills.
“Education, and educational research, is intrinsically fascinating to me. I am passionate about discovering what works for our schools and most importantly, our students. The many confounding variables within the school setting make educational research exceptionally interesting,” exclaimed Dr. Fox.
So should a teacher go for the title of Doctor? Dr. Fox surely thinks so.
“Do it! Contributing to educational literature has been one of the most rewarding experiences in my life. To be able to partake in authentic research has helped me to appreciate the nuances and complexities that exist within and across disciplines,” said Dr. Fox.