Profiles in Giving Back: Lauren Woodworth MBA ’15
Lauren Woodworth MBA ’15 prepared to become a school leader, and her eyes are still on the prize—but she also “enjoys the journey of teaching,” and when she saw a chance to step back into the classroom to start a new program, she took it.
“Our school is located in a small, rural community, and we were looking at ways to expand the opportunities that we offer our students,” says Ms. Woodworth, now spearheading a computer science program at Indian Creek High School in Trafalgar, Indiana, about 20 miles south of Indianapolis. “Many of our students did not have any prior experience with computer science, so we are striving to increase participation numbers in our program and are looking to expand the number of courses offered each year.”
Ms. Woodworth also serves as an instructional coach at her school. “Instructional Support is my passion, which was largely developed through the WW MBA Fellowship in Education Leadership, and I love recruiting and supporting teachers,” she says. “I predominantly focus on how to support teachers so they feel that our work is sustainable, while also making sure that students are learning and growing.”
As a WW MBA Fellow, Ms. Woodworth took part in an education leadership MBA program at the University of Indianapolis that focuses specifically on preparing future school leaders to transform schools and districts.
“Receiving the Fellowship was a tremendous opportunity for me to expand my training, network, and education,” says Ms. Woodworth. “The MBA program broadened my [education] philosophy to include strategies and metrics to describe the impact that a school or program has on student achievement.”
The change leadership aspect of the program, she says, has proven vital in the rapidly changing field of K–12 education. The program also gave Ms. Woodworth access to a cohort of talented, like-minded leaders. She hopes others will continue to reap the benefits of the WW MBA and the Foundation’s other programs.
“I gave soon after receiving the Fellowship because I am so grateful for the opportunities that were afforded to me and want to help make this a reality for others,” she says. “I believe in the mission of the Woodrow Wilson Foundation and have met so many wonderful leaders, both in the MBA in Education Leadership program and in the Woodrow Wilson Teaching Fellowship. I know the Woodrow Wilson Foundation chooses the best candidates for our kids and schools.”
This story appeared in the fall/winter 2019 issue of Fellowship, the newsletter of the Woodrow Wilson Foundation. To see the full newsletter, click here.