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Thomas College Launches New Master’s Program in Educational Policy and Reform

WATERVILLE, MAINE, June 2024 — Thomas College is excited to announce its new graduate level program in educational policy and reform.
This degree is for those interested in education, but not interested in being a classroom teacher. This degree blends policy, reform, and advocacy for educational stakeholders.
“This program fills a gap we have noticed of those who want to work in the field of education and advocate for the community in a powerful way yet prefer to serve outside of the classroom space,” said Chair of the Lunder School of Education Dr. Katie Rybakova. “This program is comprised of the nexus between education and policy, culminating in a fully customized practicum experience guided by professionals in education and policy reform.”
Students will apply research, showcase policy-analysis skills, and examine political, social, bureaucratic, and economic impacts on schools and educational systems. Students will learn ways in which policy is linked to the practice of schooling within the PK-12 and higher education system and employ advocacy skills to inform reform and promote educational equity. The culminating practicum in this program is fully customizable and is set up as an apprenticeship to ensure the applicability of skills developed over the course of the program of study.
Potential career pathways for this program include data analyst, higher education, non-profit organization, lobbyist, government official, public relations in education, and educational stakeholder.
“My role in the program is to help students learn about policy making from the inside,” said Professor James Libby, Ph.D., a Maine State Senator and member of the Joint Standing Committee on Education and Cultural Affairs. “Students will be expected to work in real-time on contemporary topics, employing best-practice research methodology and data management techniques to uncover inadequate educational outcomes and drive efficient and effective change.”
Courses are both asynchronous and synchronous and include project-based practicums customized to your interests as well as grant writing, educational policy and reform, and education and business-based electives.
Classes begin in July 2024. For more information, please visit our website at

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