09:30 AM

Alum named Principal of the Year, continues to aim high

Krystal Hawks became an educator because she wanted to have a positive impact on the lives of children. After completing her Master of Science in Educational Management from University of Houston-Clear Lake in 2010, she knew she was well prepared for the next level.

Now in her seventh year as principal in Alvin Independent School district, Hawks has been recognized as the Region IV Elementary School Principal of the Year for Alvin ISD 2020-21.

Hawks, who began her teaching career in special education 17 years ago, opened a then-brand-new Shirley Dill Brothers Elementary School in 2017.

"I've been principal at Brothers Elementary for four years, and I'm enrolled again at UH-Clear Lake to receive my doctorate in Educational Leadership in May 2022," she said.

Hawks returned for her doctorate after going through her master's program at UHCL because she felt confident with the preparation she had received as she stepped into her new role as school administrator back in 2012.

"I often draw back to what I learned in my master's program," she said. "I learned so many things pertinent to being an administrator. I had a great experience in the master's program, I passed my principal certification exam and felt I had such a good quality education, I decided to return."

She said she had recently passed her superintendent's certification test.

"The doctoral program has been wonderful and I'm being well trained for my next steps as a superintendent," she continued. "I was very nervous about passing the test. Thinking about it can become overwhelming because it's a five-hour test and I was worried about failing and having to do it again, but I was well prepared with everything I learned in my classes. I passed it."

What they've been learning in class, she said, has been spot-on for the expectations in the environment into which they'll be entering. "It's my career aspiration to become a superintendent because I know I have made a difference as a teacher and principal," she said, noting as a superintendent, she could impact student learning and achievement even more. "With all of the education, growth and experience I'm gaining in the field of education, this is a goal I look forward to pursuing."

For more information about UHCL's Educational Leadership doctorate, go online.