Meet Educational Leadership Graduate Couple | Cory and Liz Matheny
"The Educational Leadership Master's program has helped us network with a variety of educators and professionals within WCPS and FCPS."
Corey and Liz Matheny
- Educational Leadership (M.S., C)
Married couple Cory and Liz Matheny, graduate students in the Hood College Master of Science in Educational Leadership Program, are Frederick County Public School educators.
Tell us a little bit about your educational and career background
Cory: Liz and I were raised on opposite sides of the Antietam Battlefield, less than ten miles apart. Because of district lines, we attended different schools and did not meet until we both worked as teachers for Washington County Public Schools.
We both graduated from Salisbury University, me in 2003 and she in 2007. After graduating, we both returned to Washington County as teachers. Liz has always taught English but I originally taught history. Following my graduation from Loyola University with a Master of Liberal Arts in English, I transitioned from social studies to English.
Liz and I individually moved to Frederick after graduating from Salisbury, and have remained here since getting married in 2010. We have increasingly put down roots in the Frederick community. We were married here and enrolled in Hood’s Masters of Educational Leadership Program.
Following the birth of our son we moved on from our positions within Washington County Public Schools to accept roles at Frederick County Public Schools. We both now teach English at Frederick High School.
Why did you choose Hood College and the Masters of Educational Leadership Program?
Liz: Early in my career I was named English Department Leader. In that new role, I quickly realized that I needed to expand my understanding of instructional leadership. At the time, Cory planned to apply to Hood’s Educational Leadership Program and he convinced me to apply with him.
It was important to both of us that the program was rigorous and had a positive reputation in our school system. In the beginning, we had to establish clear boundaries. In fact, it wasn't until the end of our very first class that the instructor and classmates realized we were even married!
Now that we are a few months from graduation, we often reflect that working through the program together has been incredibly enriching because we can extend classroom conversations to the dinner table.
What do you enjoy most about being at Hood College? How do you think it is/will help you in your career and life?
Cory: The Educational Leadership Master's program has helped us network with a variety of educators and professionals within WCPS and FCPS. As students, we feel the experience and expertise of these men and women is invaluable.
For example, Liz was inspired by Sue Ann Nogle’s leadership in EDUC 581 Research-Based Teaching, Learning, & Assessment and I felt a kinship with Dr. George Seaton in EDUC 586 Principles of Educational Supervision.
Working with these two instructional leaders as well as Dr. Linda Chambers and Dr. Eric Louérs-Phillips helped us gain a deeper sense of the FCPS philosophy and prepared us well for our internship experience.
Tell us about your experience with Hood’s Educational Leadership Program and the FCPS professionals at Frederick High School
Liz: Dr. David Franceschina, Frederick High School Principal, has been an outstanding mentor! His willingness to give us formal responsibilities has made it easier for Cory and me to gain real, professional experience, more than might otherwise be the case.
We work together to co-facilitate the School Improvement Team, but also have been completing individual projects. I have been focusing much of my time helping our colleagues transition to Competency-Based Education in addition to working with a cohort of English Learner students who are eligible for graduation this spring.
Prior to this school year, Cory received permission to begin his internship with the New Horizons Summer Academy. In partnership with SHIP, the Summer Academy serves homeless youth in Frederick County. Cory has continued to engage with issues regarding homeless youth in Frederick County in his action research project.
I’m sure your free time pretty limited, but what do the two of you like to do to relax?
Liz: We spend a lot of our weekend time hiking, camping, visiting friends, and stopping in at our favorite local bookstores, or taking our son to the library.