Independent Schools Fellowship Program

Graduate & Professional

The Independent Schools Program is a masters degree program created by independent schools faculty for independent schools faculty at our partner schools.

The Independent Schools Fellowship (ISF) is for aspiring and early career educators who would like to build their experience while getting their graduate degree. It is an opportunity for you to get into the world of teaching, with the support of mentors and the coursework to help you: learn how to develop curricula, effectively engage students and manage your classroom, and be a good coach and advisor, and be a leader in your school.

 

Program Overview

Overview

Designed for full-time educators working in independent schools, you will build the skills to enhance your teaching and prepare for leadership roles. Students collaborate with a faculty liaison from their home campus as well as with our outstanding independent schools faculty and colleagues in our independent schools program to expand your professional network.

This customizable program includes courses on pedagogy, leadership, and working in an independent school context to help you build a rich toolbox to draw from for your personal and professional success.

If you are accepted into the Fellowship program, you will receive a $5,000 Emerging Leader Scholarship. You will have access to our special webinars and Independent Schools Professional Learning Community (PLC). Additionally, you will work with mentors throughout your time in the program.

Objective

The Independent Schools Fellowship requires employment in one of our partner schools and the completion of 32 credits minimum over two years. Additionally, fellows complete a Capstone project in their second year. Fellows graduate with a Master of Arts in Teaching.

The M.A.T. in Teacher Leadership program supports educators who want to help build their school’s capacity for success, support professional growth among their peers, or serve in a leadership role at the local, state, or national level.

Meet the faculty and staff >

Schedule & Curriculum

Our program is designed so you can balance the responsibilities of being a full time fellow building your experience at an independent school and earning your masters degree. Most students take 1-2 classes a semester over the course of 2 years. The program that starts in July to prepare you for starting your teaching in the fall. Summer courses are offered using our dynamic hybrid online course model, which allows students to participate live either on-campus or online. In the fall and spring, students attend live online, interactive evening courses.

You will develop not just your teaching skills, but your ability to engage and support students outside the classroom as well as an advisor, coach, and dorm parent. The program starts with mentors helping prepare you for the classroom, and culminates in a capstone project you develop with the support of experts in the field.

Download a sample course timeline

Download an introductory letter for your Head of School or Dean of Faculty

Sample Course Schedule: Independent Schools Fellowship Track

PaGE students in a tiered classroom, with one student talking and others looking on.

Year One

Summer
Fostering a Collaborative Culture | 2 credits
Child & Adolescent Development | 2 credits
Independent Schools: New Teachers' Seminar | 2 credits

Fall
Coaching and Athletics | 2 credits
Independent Schools: Beyond the Classroom | 2 credits

January (J-Term)
Interventions for Behavior and Classroom Management | 1 credit

Spring
Advising and Counseling Students Beyond the Classroom | 2 credits
Leadership in Practice for Educators | 1 credit

Professional and Graduate education students working together to prepare a presentation.

Year Two

Summer
Equity and Social Justice: A Teacher's Role | 2 credits
Outreach & Advocacy for Educational Change | 4 credits

Fall
Owning Data and Assessments for Student Learning | 2 credits
Leading Colleagues Using Research: Bridging the Gap Between Research and Practice | 2 credits

January (J-Term)
Research Design for Educators |  1 credit

Spring
Teaching / Learning Strategies for Prac? | 4 credits
Catapult! Capstone | 1 credit

Summer
Catapult! Capstone | 4 credits

*Note: the programs of study above indicate a total of 34 credits. Students are encouraged to tailor their programs to meet their personal and professional goals and may deviate from this course list. A minimum of 32 credits is required to graduate and typical course plans range from 32-38 credits depending on students’ interests.

Apply

Apply - See short description below.

Step 1. Identify and apply to one of the Fellowship Positions that is a good match for you. Consider the partner school’s mission, approach, setting, and openings.

Step 2. Secure an offer from a school that is willing to sponsor you as a fellow.

Step 3. Apply to Mount Holyoke College. The Independent Schools Fellowship program is a program of the MAT, Teacher Leadership program.

Step 4. Once you are admitted to the program, begin preparing to start your coursework in the summer, and your new position at the partner school in the fall.

Happening at Mount Holyoke

Campus News

Mount Holyoke College’s Master of Arts in Teaching program has received a $125,000 state grant to develop a new program to support teachers on emergency licenses in the Holyoke Public Schools district as they pursue initial licensure and their master’s degrees.

Mount Holyoke’s Professional and Graduate Education division awarded $250,000 to help local teachers and students with post-pandemic transitions.

The Teacher Leadership program has teamed up with independent schools across the nation to provide on-the-job training and support for teachers through the Independent Schools Fellowship. Many schools provide generous tuition benefits for the fellows.

Contact Us

Mount Holyoke College has been on the forefront of providing a rigorous education to passionate changemakers who have gone on to break new ground in education, the sciences, the arts, public service and social justice movements for over 180 years.

Amy Asadoorian
  • Admissions and Communications Coordinator

Next Steps

Apply to Mount Holyoke

Mount Holyoke seeks intellectually curious applicants who understand the value of education and are driven by a love of learning. As a college that is gender diverse, the graduate programs are coed and we welcome applications from female, male, trans and non-binary students.

Funding your graduate education

Everyone’s financial situation is unique and we offer scholarships, fellowships and partnership programs to help make an exceptional education accessible for everyone.