Mark Brandin, Ed.D. ’21 EPOL, is originally from Northbrook, Illinois, which is the geographically closest to campus that he has ever been. His teaching career began as a third-grade teacher in the U.S. Territory of Guam. Living in the Southwest Pacific sparked Mark’s interest in travel, and he soon embarked on an international career. Over the last two decades he has served as a teacher, technology coordinator, school principal, and head of school in Thailand, Myanmar, Japan, Indonesia, the United Arab Emirates, Texas, and now, Peru. Mark recently completed his online doctorate in Global Studies in Education and is now working to create an online middle school with a focus on global issues.
“I currently live in Peru and the chances to work toward a doctorate while also working full time was very limited. I was thrilled when I learned about the GSE program at Illinois, as I had been looking for a quality online program for years. I never for once felt that I was receiving “less” of an education for not attending in-person classes. In fact, I always felt deeply rooted into the Illinois learning community. Our classes were engaging and lively, with productive social interaction. Once I reached the dissertation stage I was supported throughout the entire process. I am proud to be an Illini and feel that I am so, even though I did not step foot on campus!”