Education Student Awarded Principal of the Year

Crystal BrownCrystal Brown, doctoral student in Educational Administration and Supervision and Principal of Ben Martin Elementary School, was awarded the 2013 Wells Fargo Principal of the Year Award for Cumberland County Schools.

“I felt both honored and humbled to win the award,” Brown said. “There are so many deserving candidates, and I feel blessed to have been nominated by my peers.”

The Wells Fargo Principal of the Year award recognizes principals on a local, regional and state level. Candidates are judged on a variety of characteristics including involvement in the community and school activities, providing opportunities for academic achievement to a diverse student population, and meriting respect from students, teachers, parents, community members, and coworkers.

“I had no ah-ha moment as to why I wanted to become an educator, it was just something I knew I wanted to do,” said Brown. After graduating from college, she decided to return to Fayetteville, her hometown, to become a teacher. Later, upon entering into administration she also decided to stay in Cumberland County, “I love working for Cumberland County Schools and making a difference in my hometown.”

After becoming a principal, Brown realized it was the right time to return to school for her doctoral degree. “Obtaining a doctoral degree has been a personal goal since I was in high school,” Brown explained. “Receiving this advanced degree will afford me opportunities in the field of education. And, I will be the first person in my family to obtain a doctoral degree, and being from a long line of educators, that’s pretty special.”

Brown has been very pleased with her experience and the quality of her program at North Carolina State University so far. “The professors are approachable and have a genuine interest in seeing all students be successful,” Brown stated. “The classes have challenged me to grow professionally.”

One of the strengths of the College’s doctoral program is the opportunity to network with educators all across North Carolina. “My classmates bring a unique perspective on common issues and I enjoy learning from them as much as I learn from professors,” Brown explained.

Brown has completed all of the required courses for her doctoral degree and is currently working on her dissertation. Her dissertation is a mixed methods study, which focuses on perceptions of effective elements of professional development. 

Check out Crystal Brown's nomination video:


Written by Rebecca Hauser, senior, communications 

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